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Saturday late lunch in Toulouse or on the road.

We are flying into Toulouse airport at 1:30 pm and need time to pick up our rental car.

We are driving to Beynac et Cazenac from there.
We need to eat a late lunch, probably around 2:30pm by the time everything is said and done.
Because I have no idea how long getting into the rental car and driving, finding parking will take.

I'm trying to find a place that is open later in the afternoon for lunch AND has parking available close. It could be on the way out of town or possibly in Toulouse ?
If we have to park in a parking garage and walk a little, that is fine.
Because my 12 year old is very picky I'm hoping to find a simple pizza or burger place.
But not a fast food chain ( because I don't want to fly to France to eat American fast food, other days we will eat at nicer French restaurants, this stop is just a matter of needing acceptable food from a place still serving lunch that late. And a long travel day means needing simple food my son will actually eat. )
It looks like many restaurants in this region of France are only open from 12 to 2:30 for lunch.
I am worried about the time crunch.

And eating after our flight and before the three hour drive.
I've looked online but the time frame seems to be a difficulty and PERHAPS someone knows a great little place between Toulouse and
Beynac et Cazenac to eat, because stopping somewhere along the way would seem even better.
Especially if there is parking available for the rental car.
Thank you !

Posted by
3575 posts

I have not been to the Toulouse airport, but the thought occurs to me that you might possibly find a lunch there.before you pick up your car.

Posted by
10046 posts

Having driven that route, it’s a very traditional and economically depressed part of the country, so it’s highly unlikely any restaurants in towns will be open between 2:30 and 7:00 pm. The easiest is to leave the rental car in the parking structure and eat at the airport if they have food in the public area. Second is to find a shopping center nearby as you drive out. They’ll have a large grocery and cafes or a Flunch—an economical chain restaurant or other chain restaurants that serves all day.

Posted by
375 posts

I just checked Toulouse on google maps, searching for the airport and then "nearby" restaurants. Looks like there's a complex just 10 minutesnorth - in the Centre Commercial Blagnac - that has a Flunch. And a McDonalds right around there, too.

I wouldn't necessarily write off McD. While we don't eat there, the French seem to love McD, as they are always packed when we have stopped in for coffee. The menu seems to have a French flair, so it's an experience...

We've eaten at Flunch before while traveling the French highways. It's kinda like a fast food cafe...traditional sandwiches (ham and cheese baguette, croissants, etc) but not with the small town/Parisian finesse/quality. There's also E leClerc in that same complex...a grocery store where you could pick up something.

Posted by
20 posts

Thank you so much for your reply and research .
We don't even eat McDonald's here ( yuck) so ....unless it tastes better there or they have better quality beef for some reason. I don't see that happening. I suppose if we are desperate ....
Do you think it would be better for us to find some food in Orly airport and eat on the plane between Paris and Toulouse ?
Although it looks like food options in Orly airport are fairly limited as well.
I don't know why I didn't think about it until now, but perhaps that would be less hassle and we can get on the road to Beynac et Cazenac earlier.
I wasn't sure if Toulouse was worth spending an hour sightseeing in before we drive to our destination or not ? And perhaps parking in Toulouse somewhere and going to a pizza place or cafe might be more enjoyable ?
But also I don't want to wander around aimlessly for an hour looking for a place still serving lunch. Considering we need to get on the road to meet our host at our VRBO rental house.
Thanks again.

Posted by
189 posts

We had lunch and wandered around Toulouse a few weeks ago. It was a nice place to walk around but you will be heading south from the airport which is opposite from the way to Baynac. I wouldn't recommend it.

We flew into and out of Toulouse about a month ago. I looked around for restaurants near the airport for dinner and didn't find any that I wanted to try. Flying in I thought we would be too tired to enjoy anything expensive. Flying out after we had enjoyed great food for a month I didn't want to leave with a meal that we might not enjoy. So coming in we ate at a bakery near our hotel. Flying out we brought pastries etc from our favorite shop in St Cyprien.
On the drive to Cenac, near Baynac, I thought we might pass a place for lunch but other than the divided highway rest stops I found nothing. You might have better luck but I wouldn't count on it.

We were near Cenac for a month. I'm sure you will enjoy the area and the food!

Posted by
7894 posts

On our last trip we ended up in a small town hoping for a late lunch and could literally not find anyplace to get food -- not even a bakery with sandwiches. The lunch hours are observed more in smaller places where otherwise the properietor would be working a 14 hour day than in Paris or other big cities. I'd plan to acquire a sandwich before boarding the flight or hope to find a bakery. I always carry an apple and granola bars when in route places in case I get stranded without food.

Posted by
20 posts

Thank you. I am so glad I asked. Because it looks like I will need to pack some food for us to eat on the plane.
Has anyone had experience with bringing food through security at Orly airport ?
I know we will have to get water on the other side of security, but is food okay ?
Someone told me their entire suitcase was rifled through because of a couple of granola bars she packed. Maybe if I carry the food separately ?

If I were traveling solo, I seriously wouldn't worry about it. But keeping my husband and 12 year old son and their appetites in mind.
If we have to eat fast food once, oh well.
C'est la vie, n'est pas?
I did see some hotel chain that may serve a late lunch outside of the airport near Toulouse, I might look into that ....
Thanks so much fellow travelers !
If anyone has MUST do stops or restaurants in the area. ( Besides the obvious like canoeing the Dordogne and Castles) Let me know , thanks.

Posted by
10046 posts

We ate very well at Orly, some sort of modern quinoa salad with citrus, vegies, whole wheat rolls, cold get the idea. There are also Paul stands where your son should be able to find something acceptable. You could eat at Orly after security rather than pack a picnic.

Posted by
20 posts

Thank you so much, I couldn't figure out if there were restaurants in that airport after security.
Great !

Posted by
6742 posts

The Exki chain has several branches after security in Orly and has some very good slads, quiches, sandwiches... Almost sure there's one where the AF flights leave for Toulouse.