Feel our top 5 sensory experiences in Montpellier…

See art at the Musée Fabre, close to the city’s main square, Place de la Comédie. There’s a large representation of ‘Luminist’ Impressionist paintings, which devote particular attention to light effects.

Hear concerts at the Radio France and Montpellier Festival. Every July Montpellier opens its doors and gardens for a programme of over 100 concerts, ranging from operas, symphonic concerts and chamber music to recitals by young virtuosos and jazz musicians.

Smell platters of olive tapenade, sun-dried aubergines, paté, garlicky charcuterie and goats cheese. Food in Montpellier is all about sunshine, sharing and simplicity.

Taste wine from the Coteaux du Languedoc. The area’s most distinctive are Picpoul de Pinet, Clairette du Languedoc and sweet and dry Muscats; there are even some sparkling reds.

Touch the old stone of the ‘mikveh’ Jewish ritual bath. It dates back to the 13th century and is one of Europe’s best preserved, fed by an underground water source.

Mid-way between Spain and Italy and just 7km from the Mediterranean, graceful Montpellier (External link) is the capital of Hérault and one of France’s best-loved cities – a tangle of narrow streets and sunny squares somehow supporting a calendar of international festivals (External link) and vibrant student festivities. It was founded by the counts of Toulouse in the 10th century and was formerly a wealthy trading port, as well as housing Europe’s first medical school. Beach and nature lovers can base themselves in Montpellier for white sandy beaches (External link) and, further east, the marshlands of the Camargue (External link) .

Getting to MontpellierBy air: Montpellier-Méditerranée AirportBy train: 3h15m from Paris by TGVBy road: A9, A75 (750km from Paris, 345km from Barcelona)

Further information:Montpellier Tourist OfficePlace de la Comédie34000 MontpellierTel. +33 (0)4 67 60 60 60 (External link)