In the footsteps of the pioneers of the Toulouse Aeropostale

In the district of Toulouse Aerospace, along the old Montaudran trail from which the pioneers of civil aviation sprang at the beginning of the 20th century, La Piste des Géants invites you to relive their fabulous epic in three stages. Let’s head to La Halle de La Machine, L’Envol des Pionniers and Les Jardins de la Ligne for a spectacular, poetic journey.

The Hall of the Machine

With its roof made out of an aeroplane wing, it’s impossible to miss the Hall. In this vast, 6,000m² space are all manner of quirky machines designed by poets and handymen. A 14-metre-tall minotaur, a giant spider named Ariane, a nightingale like no other, a wine-serving machine, a cocotte à flutes or a bread catapult…

There are around 100 crazy creations here, from huge specimens to those you can hold in the palm of your hand, telling stories in perpetual motion. The actor-machinists of company La Machine give them life, pulling cables and bits of string. They even invite visitors to board these wonderful machines.

On the former runway of Toulouse-Montaudran, two kilometers long and reconverted into an urban artery, the minotaur carries up to 50 people on his flank. The spider spreads its legs to accompany him with a dozen passengers on its back (suitable for children too). Buckle up and let’s go!

La Halle de la Machine (External link)

The Flight of the Pioneers

They were called Latécoère, Mermoz and Saint-Exupéry ... In the heart of the Piste des Géants, The Flight of the Pioneers – which opened on 20 December 2018 – brings to life the extraordinary adventure of the pioneers of Aéropostale, founded in Toulouse a century ago.

In the historic buildings, where the first flying machines were designed and maintained to cross the oceans and deserts to deliver the mail faster, a 1,000-m² permanent exhibition traces the beginnings of aviation and pays tribute to the heroes of the sky. It’s an epic, lifesize reincarnation of the route of the Aéropostale, the French airline based in Montaudran.

L’Envol des Pionniers (External link)

The Gardens of the Line

Three continents, eight countries: the Jardins de la Ligne is a 15,000-km journey along the former Aeropostale runway. Conceived as a walk through the different atmospheres of countries overflown by the line, from Toulouse to Valparaiso in Chile, they cross Spain, Morocco, Mauritania, Senegal, Brazil and Argentina. Children’s games, rest areas and interactive kiosks punctuate the visit, which is also highly visual and sensory: 227 trees of 30 different species were planted here.

La Piste des Géants, Toulouse