One of France’s great provincial art galleries occupies the splendid former Hôtel de Massilian. The collection has over 800 works from the Renaissance to the 20th century and includes works by Rubens and Reynolds, Delacroix and Dufy. It began when Napoleon sent Montpellier an exhibition from the Académie Royale in 1803 then expanded with a donation of its most important works from François Fabre, a Montpellier painter, in 1828. Other donated works have made the collection strong on French art including Poussin’s Venus and Adonis and works by Delacroix, David, and Dufy. An entire wing is devoted to abstract expressionist Pierre Soulages. For a glimpse at aristocratic 18th and 19th century living, visit the Hôtel Cabrières opposite with its ornate furniture and luxurious textiles with the same ticket.