The region of Carladez: Aveyron & Cantal
The region of Carladez, located between Aubrac and the Monts du Cantal, is home to the “Sentiers de l’imaginaire” discovery trails.
Carladez, which owes much of its heritage to Aveyron and, to a lesser extent, Cantal, has two distinct characters that can be traced way back.
The region is renowned for its two breeds of cattle, Salers and Aubrac, as well as its two local dishes, truffade and aligot. It’s also a great place for a family hike, exploring the Sentiers de l’Imaginaire discovery trails, along the banks of the Truyère and the foothills of the Monts du Cantal.
Two worlds to discover…Both guaranteed to delight!
The sentiers de l’imaginaire discovery trails
These short, fun, family-friendly, educational trails will delight adults and children alike.
Residents from local villages have brought the trails to life by installing lighting, cabins, sculptures and other surprises, focusing on 6 different themes: water, stone, history, fire, wood and flora.
Stories from history: during the 19th century, Mur-de-Barrez was a prosperous town with a château, houses nestled into the rocks, craftsmen and beautiful shops! Enter the village via the “Carrièra Granda” (Grande Rue) and walk through the Tour de Monaco tower. The “Tower of Monaco” in Mur-de-Barrez, I hear you ask? Yes, it’s a long story. Here’s 148 years of history condensed into just a few lines: in 1643 Louis XIII decided to cede the region of Carladez to Prince Honoré II of Monaco to compensate for land he’d lost in Italy. Between 1643 and 1791, Carladez was a stronghold belonging to the Principality of Monaco. Take time to explore its small streets and alleyways and keep an eye out for the coats of arms that adorn many of its buildings.
Mur-de-Barrez is a small, traditional village, steeped in history, characterised by its uniquely constructed roofs which are built from local, natural resources including basalt and flagstone.
The Château de Valon
The imposing and unique Château de Valon offers a splendid view of the Gorges de la Truyère. Guided tours, a range of entertainment and tales about King Titus bring the château and village to life throughout the year.
Visit the waterfalls of Saut de la Truite and Capat: enjoy a relaxing and refreshing break on the river banks. Admire the beautiful, well-preserved setting, fashioned by the rivers as they carved out paths through the volcanic rock, characteristic of the Cantal and Auvergne regions.
Conques, in Aveyron, is classified as one of the “most beautiful villages in France” and is a major stopping off point on the Santiago de Compostela route. It boasts some impressive Romanesque architecture and Medieval gold and silver metalwork.
Rouergue, Rodez and the Lot Valley
Visit the Gothic bridge in Entraygues, at the confluence of the Lot and Truyère rivers. Also worth exploring: the picturesque Medieval town of Estaing, Bozouls an amazing, geological site and the Cathedral of Notre Dame de Rodez.
The Aubrac region
Aubrac is a region of endless, enchanting landscapes, providing perfect summer pasture for grazing Aubrac cattle. It’s an area of water and moorland with fabulous flora and fauna. And, of course, it’s also where the famous Laguiole knives are made.
The Cantal Mountain Range
Climb, cycle or take a cable car up the Plomb du Cantal, the 2nd highest point in the Massif Central; also worth visiting is the Puy Mary, with its legendary pyramid shape peak surrounded by 12 glacial valleys arranged in star formation.
The Garabit Viaduct
This exceptional structure, built by Gustave Eiffel in 1880, was the culmination of 4 years of human endeavour and considerable technical expertise. The bridge, with its vast arch, was, at the time, the largest metal structure in the world. It was also a great opportunity to experiment with some of the techniques later used in the construction of the Eiffel Tower.
Chaudes Aigues spa resort is home to Europe’s hottest natural thermal springs, dating back to ancient times. The Par spring, which reaches a temperature of 82° C, flows at a rate of 5L/sec. Visit the geothermal museum to learn about the mystery of the hot springs and history of the thermal water.