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The city of Auch expands on either side of the river Gers. On the left bank, around the cathedral lays the medieval part, whereas on the right bank, 19th and 20th century buildings stand in the plain, on the side of large avenues opened to the exterior.
Auch (Gers) mini guide
From whichever direction you arrive in to the capital of Gers, especially coming from Toulouse, 'Auch' presents you with a prestigious architectural ensemble made up of St Mary’s Cathedral, the monumental Staircase, the Prefecture (previously an archiepiscopal palace) and the Tower of Armagnac.
Auch is built on and around a hill on the west bank of the Gers River, west of Toulouse. It is a farm market and commercial centre with a variety of manufactures and an important trade in Armagnac brandy, poultry, wine and grain.
The interesting old town stands on a bluff overlooking the tree lined river, with the Cathedral Ste-Marie prominent at its edge. Although not finished until the latter part of the seventeenth century, the cathedral was built in basically late Gothic style, with a classical facade. The choir and the stained glass, both were begun in the early 1500s are of particular interest. The stalls show extraordinary virtuosity and detail. The eighteen windows, unusual in being a complete set, are equally rich in detail. They are the work of a Gascon painter, Arnaud de Moles.
Immediately south of the cathedral, in the tree filled place Salinis, is the forty-metre-high Tour d'Armagnac, which served as an ecclesiastical court and prison in the fourteenth century. Descending from here to the river is a monumental stairway of 234 steps, with a statue of d'Artagnan gracing one of the terraces.
From place de la République, in front of the cathedral's main west door, rue d'Espagne connects with rue de la Convention and what is left of the narrow medieval stairways known as the pousterles, which give access to the lower town. On the north side of place de la République, the tourist office inhabits a splendid half-timbered fifteenth-century house on the corner with rue Dessoles, a pedestrianised street boasting an array of fine buildings.
Just down the steps to the east of rue Dessoles, on place Louis-Blanc, the former convent, now the Musée des Jacobins houses one of the best collections of pre-Columbian and later South American art in France, left to the town by an adventurous son, M. Pujos, who had lived in Chile in the last years of the nineteenth century. Also of interest is its small collection of traditional Gascon furniture, religious artefacts and Gallo-Roman remains.
|Department:||South West France > Midi Pyrenees > Gers >|
|Tourist information website:||http://www.auch-tourisme.com|
|Tourist information contact email:||email@example.com|
|Tourist information switch board number:||+ 33 (0)5 62 05 22 89|
|Tourist information address:||1, rue Dessoles - BP 174 - 32003 Auch Cedex France|
|Quick links to accommodation:||Accommodation near Auch (Gers) - Hotels in Auch (Gers)|
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