Imagine yourself in medieval France in this ancient trade and university town. Then take advantage of the easy access to the Mediterranean Sea.

Montpellier is home to France’s oldest botanical garden and one of its oldest universities. Due to its southern location, Montpellier is not a typical medieval French city. Note the influence of Spain on the city’s architecture, sample fish caught fresh from the Mediterranean Sea and take a daytrip south to sunbathe in a Mediterranean resort town.

Begin in the Place de la Comédie, an open central square abutted by the grand Opera House. Watch a world-class performance here or simply observe the 19th-century building at night when its giant windows are illuminated with purple neon lights.

Walk just a few blocks east of Montpellier’s historic center to one of its newest developments: the Antigone neighborhood. Between 1979 and 2000, this area was entirely redeveloped by famed architect Ricardo Bofill, who is from the nearby Spanish region of Catalonia. The massive neoclassical buildings culminate in the grassy amphitheater of the Esplanade de l’Europe, which curves along the Lez River. Come to the esplanade on Friday evenings during the summer for wine tasting.

Montpellier’s history of prosperity and its rich artistic tradition have given it exciting and influential cultural attractions. The Botanical Garden, founded in 1593, is France’s oldest; it inspired the design of the Jardin des Plantes in Paris. Visit the Fabre Museum to see a collection of classical European art, including an extensive collection of drawings by French masters. Inside the Montpellier Cathedral you will find a canvas by Sébastien Bourdon, one of the city’s most famous native artists.

Take advantage of Montpellier’s Mediterranean location by visiting Palavas les Flots, which is a 20-minute drive south of the city. This resort town is located on a long and extremely narrow island off the French coastline. While there, try succulent shrimp or cod from local waters.

An international airport lies 5 miles (8 kilometers) east of the Montpellier city center. Once in the city, get around via the extensive tramway network and on foot. You will find that a pleasant Mediterranean breeze blows through its narrow medieval streets.

Where to stay in Montpellier

Croix-d'Argent
Croix-d'Argent, Montpellier, France

Croix-d'Argent

Known for Skyscraper, Budget, Walking

This district is ideal for a family adventure, with its woodland trails, bowling alleys and wall-climbing theme park, where you can mix fitness with video games.

Beaux Arts-Boutonnet
Beaux Arts-Boutonnet, Montpellier, France

Beaux Arts-Boutonnet

Known for Garden, Walking, Family-friendly

Just north of the Place de la Comédie, gardens and student residences provide youthful and serene settings where markets and festivals thrive.

Pres d'Arenes
Pres d'Arenes, Montpellier, France

Pres d'Arenes

Known for Golf, Budget, Entertainment

3.5/5(2 reviews)

This lively zone has a 19th-century locomotive and a picturesque park with multisport amenities. Attend concerts in the theaters, go bowling or play mini-golf.

Boutonnet
Boutonnet, Montpellier, France

Boutonnet

Known for Garden, Walking, Family-friendly

Filled with university students and families, this northern Montpellier neighborhood erupts with excitement for its lively annual jazz band festival. 

Top Hotels in Montpellier

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
 Hôtel Golden Tulip Montpellier Centre St Roch
Hôtel Golden Tulip Montpellier Centre St Roch
4 out of 5
CA $136
per night
Dec 15 - Dec 16

Located in Montpellier City-Centre, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Babotte's Tower, Comedy Square and Place de la Comedie. Fabre Museum and La Promenade ...

4/5Very Good! (17 reviews)

"Hotel is brand new and everything still looks perfect. Good breakfast. Like the furniture and the way employees are dressed. Location opposite train station is practical."…"

Reviewed on Oct. 23, 2019

Hôtel Golden Tulip Montpellier Centre St Roch
Citadines Antigone Montpellier
Citadines Antigone Montpellier
3 out of 5
588 Boulevard d'Antigone, Montpellier, Herault
CA $78
per night
Dec 20 - Dec 21

Located in Antigone, this residence is within a 10-minute walk of FNAC Montpellier and Place de la Comedie. Comedy Square and Fabre Museum are also within 15 ...

4.1/5Very Good! (846 reviews)

"Staff friendly and helpful, apartment perfect for our family."…"

Reviewed on Oct. 2, 2019

Citadines Antigone Montpellier
Crowne Plaza Montpellier - Corum
Crowne Plaza Montpellier - Corum
4 out of 5
CA $117
per night
Dec 16 - Dec 17

Located in Antigone, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Corum Convention Center, Fabre Museum and Place de la Comedie. Comedy Square and La Promenade du ...

4.2/5Excellent! (422 reviews)
Great pool, walk to city centre

"Pool and area around is great for relaxing. Friendly receptionist allowed us to leave our bags and use pool until our room was ready. Room good but minimal supplies."…"

Reviewed on Jul. 25, 2019

Crowne Plaza Montpellier - Corum

Popular things to do in Montpellier

Comedy Square
Image for Comedy Square

Comedy Square

5/5(8 reviews)

One of the largest pedestrianized squares in Europe is a great place to come for coffee, to see some opera and shop for food and fashion.

Mare Nostrum Aquarium
Image for Mare Nostrum Aquarium

Mare Nostrum Aquarium

3/5(1 review)

With thousands of exotic fish, a storm simulator, sharks and a tropical rainforest, this aquarium provides fascinating insights into marine life.

Fabre Museum
Image for Fabre Museum

Fabre Museum

5/5(4 reviews)

Step inside an 18th-century mansion to explore hundreds of years’ worth of art from some of the world's leading painters and artistic movements.

Botanical Garden
Image for Botanical Garden

Botanical Garden

4.5/5(8 reviews)

The oldest botanical garden in France contains thousands of plant species and trees that are hundreds of years old.

La Promenade du Peyrou
Image for La Promenade du Peyrou

La Promenade du Peyrou

5/5(1 review)

Walk between the arches of the vast aqueduct near the moated water tower in this dazzling park celebrating the glory of a monarch. 

Montpellier Cathedral
Image for Montpellier Cathedral

Montpellier Cathedral

4.5/5(4 reviews)

Behind the fortress-like façade of this medieval church is a collection of biblical artworks and a striking-looking organ from the 18th century.

Top activities in Montpellier

2H - SEGWAY TOUR NEW & OLD CITY - Montpellier
Image for 2H - SEGWAY TOUR NEW & OLD CITY - Montpellier

2H - SEGWAY TOUR NEW & OLD CITY - Montpellier

CA $73

Journey through the history of Montpellier by Gyropode Segway on a tour of the city's new and old districts. Benefit from a training session to master the art of an electric personal transporter! Discover landmark monuments, such as the Esplanade.

Day Trip:Nature Sites and medieval Villages From Montpellier
Image for Day Trip:Nature Sites and medieval Villages From Montpellier

Day Trip:Nature Sites and medieval Villages From Montpellier

CA $73

On board our air-conditioned minibus, David, a local guide will drive you to the small village of Moureze. Discover the streets of this medieval village and its incredible rock circus with strange shapes.

Transfer from Nimes Airport or Nimes city to Ales
Image for Transfer from Nimes Airport or Nimes city to Ales

Transfer from Nimes Airport or Nimes city to Ales

CA $45

You end up your stress when you are waiting for your taxi Private transport service only for your group. Travel direct to your destination without additional stops or waiting.

Visit Navacelles circus and Foux's mill
Image for Visit Navacelles circus and Foux's mill

Visit Navacelles circus and Foux's mill

CA $73

During this day trip you will be able to admire beautiful panoramas, discover a small medieval village, a river, a waterfall, a resurgence and even a mill. But the most surprising is probably the famous circus of Navacelles and its impressive cliffs

Half-Day Secret Camargue Tour
Image for Half-Day Secret Camargue Tour

Half-Day Secret Camargue Tour

CA $117

Delve into the wilderness of the Camargue, a coastal wetland populated by pink flamingoes, white horses, and black bulls. Visit the Pont de Gau Ornithological Park for up-close looks at the region’s winged residents, and take in the views from the church bell tower in historic Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer.

Seaquarium Admission Ticket
Image for Seaquarium Admission Ticket

Seaquarium Admission Ticket

CA $22

Visit: Seaquarium, Avenue du Palais de la Mer, 30240, Le Grau-du-Roi France Unique in Europe : Seaquarium invites you to plunge into it’s new shark centre, “Le Requarium”, entirely dedicated to one of the planet’s fiercest predators.

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