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The Lot Valley : so many opportunities for bicycle lovers !

From the high plateaux of the Aubrac to the gracious river bends of the Lot, taking in along the way proud medieval cities and perched villages, a host of paths and roads, drown in the perfumes of wild flowers and liberty… The Lot Valley is a paradise for bicycle lovers!

Each département offers several itineraries, from simple family rides to discover the countryside to more experienced cyclists, who want to follow the steps of the “Tour de France” ; everyone will find an itinerary to suit them.

Find below some of the itineraries :

 In Aveyron :

  • Verlac pass

For all those who love climbing here’s a beautiful 80 km circuit with a climb to the Verlac pass and a finish on the Aubrac plateau. Best ridden in the spring when the flowers are out or in the autumn when the colours are magnificent. Superb descent after Aubrac, but watch out for the slow climb up to Lassouts!

  • The Conques circuit

Circuit of about 130 km with 2 variants possible of 50 and 90 km allowing you to see several remarkable sites: the Trou de Bozouls geological site, the Villecomtal Rougier, the abbey-church and the exceptional mediaeval village of Conques, famous stop on the St James Way.

  • Espalion circuit

A very pretty 63 kms circuit that combines the discovery of different natural landscapes and architectural heritage (St Côme d’Olt, village classed amongst the most beautiful in France and the Perse chappel in Espalion, both in the Lot Valley). 

 

  • Tour of the Aubrac

A circuit of 117 km and 3 passes of between 1000 and 1300 metres (Verlac, Trébatut and Bonnecombe for the more courageous) proof that the Aveyron isn’t a flat area! You will alternate from plateaux (Causse de Séverac, Aubrac) to valleys (Lot valley at St Géniez d'Olt and at St Laurent d'Olt). The occasion to admire the great expanses of the mountainous north Aveyron, land of pastures, peat bogs and Burons mountain shelters and the beautiful Aubrac cows, with some parts in the Lozere département too.

  • Circular Tour of the 10 "plus beaux villages de France" (most beautiful villages in France) in Aveyron 

Between causses and valleys, mountains and gorges, this itinerary will take you in 7 days to the 10 most beautiful villages of the Aveyron including Estaing in the magnificent and verdant Lot valley as well as Conques and its treasure… From the high Aubrac plateau passing via the Gorges du Tarn, this tour covers the whole of the département. Of an average level of difficulty, this tour alternates difficulties throughout the circuit.

With 3 of the 7 stages in the Lot Valley, discover the heritage and culinary specialties of the area.  Details of each stages on http://www.tourisme-aveyron.com/en/circuits/cycling/circuit-beautiful-villages.php

In Cantal

In the South of Cantal, the Chataigneraie is a protected conservation area, interrupt only by bucolic villages : Marcolès, Montsalvy, and gentle glens.  For a week on the bike, following the little hidden roads with accommodation. Visit Cantal Destination website

Cantal Destination offers 9 loops in the Lot Valley area. Contact FFCT (Confédération Francaise de Cyclotourisme) for more information www.ffct.org

In Lot-et-Garonne

 

  • Follow the river on the véloroute

Imagine little roads very well signposted with just a few ups and downs, along the river Lot.  From the confluence with the Garonne  right up to the castle of Bonaguil, and which continues as far as Cahors, in the Lot département ; in total,160 km of country road that everyone can use. Leaflets with all the trails are available in the Tourist Offices along the route.

More information on Lot tourisme website and the Lot-et-Garonne website

  • Around the castle of Bonaguil :

This 32.3 kms loop  will pass the castle, one of the main site in Lot-et-Garonne ans Fumel on the banks of the Lot.

  • Sainte-Livrade loop :

Easy ride in the middle of the orchards of one of the most prolific département (plums, kiwi, apple, hazelnuts trees) as well as one vineyard.

In the Lot

  • Parnac : follow the vineyards

Come and explore the vineyards which extend to the banks of the Lot. Through the vines, you can see the Château St. Didier, surrounded by its vineyard. Further on, is the Côtes d'Olt Cooperative Winery which has its headquarters in Parnac.

  • Around Cahors :

A pleasant ride taking you past some fine examples of local architecture: 3 villages, 3 castles or fine houses, and 2 churches to see. No great altitude difference over the route; the length of the ride constitutes its difficulty, and the use of main roads (D roads) requires caution.

  • On the way of the “Pescadores”

A perfect way of exploring the meanders of the Lot...This ride will take you through 3 villages, Pescadoires, Lagardelle and Grézels, following the banks of the Lot. This is a family ride, which will introduce you to the "pescatores" or anglers.

  •  On the banks of the Lot :

During this short ride through the countryside close to Cahors, you follow the Lot river to start with, and then come back to the old village of Pradines, where the ride finishes. A family ride, providing the opportunity to explore this village in the vicinity of Cahors.

  • Through the Cahors vineyards :

Family ride through the vineyards which brings you to the Experimental Farm and the Romanesque church of St. Laurent. The Anglars Juillac château is privately-owned; but you can get a view of it from the outside to admire the building. Don't forget to keep an eye on the road, though!

And finally in Lozere

After 1995, 2005 and 2010, Mende is once again part of the Tour de France! Saturday 18th July 2015, the contestants will cycle from Rodez to Mende, passing the famous « Jalabert » climb.

On the 19th of July, the « Tour de France » will leave Mende to reach Valence for the next stage.

Several itineraries for bike lovers in Lozere, amongst them :

  • The Mount Lozere :

One day on the bike from Le Mas De La Barque to Mount Lozere resort. This 42kms itinerary crosses various sceneries. Possibility to rent bicycle or electric one on site.

 

"Sur les Traces du Fromage" hike - discovery of the Aubrac plateau and its culinary traditions

On your cross country skis or snow-shoes, depending on the amount of snow, get ready for the 29th edition of the “Traces du Fromage” which will take place on the 8th of March 2015.  

The two itineraries of this cross-country skiing hike will lead you to the discovery of the Aubrac mountains.  The well signposted itineraries will take you from one buron* to the next one, where you will meet with local producers and try their specialties : Laguiole cheese, mulled wine, gentiane drink, ...   

At lunch time, the famous Aligot dish will be served with Aubrac beef at the meeting point between the two itineraries. 

While walking, you can also answer the quizz about the Aubrac plateau and maybe win a prize?

Two departures :

  • Bouyssou ski resort in Laguiole (18 to 20 kms loop)
  • Brameloup ski resort (17 to 19 kms loop)

Teams of 1 to 6 persons (minimum age : 12 years old)

  • Adult : 27 €
  • Child : 19 €

Price includes food and drinks tasting as well as the lunch in Aubrac

* A buron is a traditional shepherd’s hut made with stones.

 

Plan your next holidays in the Lot Valley

The beautiful Lot Valley spans five French départments - Lozère, Cantal, Aveyron, Lot and Lot-et-Garonne.

The Lot river, whose source is 1,200 metres up Mont Lozere, winds its way through the valley, a backdrop of unspoilt natural beauty filled with medieval bastides, abbeys and castles and a living culture that allows visitors to step back in time and discover a corner of France as it was and as it is.

Why visiting the Lot Valley ?

o        Taste the outdoors - stunning landscapes (none more so than the dramatic landscapes of the Aubrac Peninsula at the eastern end of the valley), picturesque villages, a region that has been a favourite muse of French artists for centuries, home to a remarkable diversity of wildlife of butterflies, birds, insects and flowers.

 

o        Outdoor activities – messing about on the river – boating, windsurfing, sailing, swimming, fishing, canoeing, canyoning, tubing and white water rafting.  Stick to dry land – horse riding, hiking, climbing, skiing,  cycling and fishing . Take to the air – handgliding or head underground – caving

 

o        Relax and rejuvenate – there are several thermal springs in the Upper Lot Valley and the spring in the village of Chaude Aigues in the Cantal, has the hottest thermal spring in Europe at 82˚C.  The spa La Chaldette in Lozère, at 1000 metres altitude, is also a must.

 

o        Take a journey through time - home to some of Europe’s most impressive pre-historic cave art, centuries-old castles, abbeys, bastides and Medieval villages survive as they were, the Roman abbey at Conques, (Aveyron), the castle Château de Cénevières, St Cirq Lapopie in the Lot and the beautiful Bastide of Montflanquin in Lot-et-Garonne.   

 

o   Traditional food and drink.  The Lot Valley is most famous for its duck produce), its cheeses -  Roquefort and Cantal, and its wines – Cahors, Marcillac, Le Fel et Estaing amongst others.

 

The Lot Valley inhabitants, conscious of their treasure, try to keep the nature intact and offer numerous sustainable accommodations, restaurants and activities.  You will find here a list  of some of them.

 

Visit Cantal Département

Beautiful presentations from Cantal Destination about the northern part of the Lot Valley and its fishing activity :

 

Happy New Year !

 

Winter activities in the Lot Valley

If you are looking for quiet famly oriented ski resorts, traditional markets, unusual winter activities (dog-sledding, snow-shoeing, Nordic Sauna, ...) and want to discover this part of France in a different atmosphere, visit the Lot Valley in winter.

The Lot Valley in winter still offers many opportunities and whether you are more of a foody person or like active breaks, you'll find something for you.  

 

Gastronomy :

Throughout winter, markets in Lot and Lot-et-Garonne specialise in capon (corn-fattened chicken), duck, goose and "foie gras" liver, ready for the festive season.
These “fat” markets are in Villeneuve sur Lot (Lot et Garonne) every Saturday morning, from October to March or in Cahors (Lot) every Saturday morning, mi-November to end of December. To learn more about foie gras, visit the Foie Gras museum in Lot et Garonne (www.souleilles-foiegras.com)

Meanwhile, the market town of Lalbenque (Lot), headquarters of the French truffle industry, is getting busy. This is where the nationwide price of truffles is set, and where during the winter months there's the largest weekly truffle market in France which attracts both restaurateurs and tourists alike. It started last Tuesday and continues every Tuesday until mid-March (2pm onwards).

Many hotels and restaurants offer truffle-themed breaks that include cookery classes, menus, and even truffle-hunting expeditions with pigs or dogs. The truffles begin life underground in May or June, growing during the summer months thanks to the heavy showers and maturing at the start of Autumn. They're ready to be unearthed by winter, usually sniffed out with the help of a specially trained dog or a pig thanks to their characteristic perfume.

The favourite winter dish in Aveyron is estofinado or ‘stockfish’, made from dried North Atlantic cod that traditionally arrived by boat to Bordeaux.  Simmered in water and mixed with mashed potatoes, beaten egg and parsley, it was once a staple winter food but today is served in many gastronomic restaurants, especially near Decazeville.

If you’ve room for dessert, try tourtière – layers of wafer thin pastry topped with slice apples soaked in Armagnac, specialty of Lot et Garonne or chestnut dishes in the Chataigneraie (chestnut trees protected area) in Cantal.

Winter activities :   

Nordic skiing, downhill skiing, snowshoeing, dog-sledding, geocatching, the Lot Valley in winter offers “alternative living” stays. With more than 500km of signposted slopes, the ski resorts of Le Mas de la Barque, Les Bouviers, Mont Lozère and the Massif de L’Aubrac in Lozere, as well as Saint-Urcize and Pailherols in Cantal, and Laguiole in Aveyron which is particularly good for families offer you the chance to practice your favourite winter sport in exceptionally beautiful and preserved countryside, across wooded expanses or on the crests along the peaks.

New this winterBaby Traineau Park : in Lozere, at la Baraque des Bouviers, the park offers the opportunity for children 3 – 7 years old to discover the dog-sledding and spend time with the dogs and learn how to drive the sleigh. http://www.aubracmushing.com

Snowkite : similar to kite surf, the snow kite consists of sliding on the snow, carried away by a sail. The Col de Bonnecombe on the Aubrac plateau is one of the best spot in France for snowkite. Beginners can practise in a natural protected basin whereas experienced surfers can slide up to 100 kms/h on 18kms long spots.

More information on : http://snowkiteaucoldebonnecombe.blogspot.fr/  

And also unique opportunity to meet bisons and wolves in a natural environment :

European Bisons : naturally found in the wild only in the north of Europe, the European Bison has been reintroduced in La Margeride. Here they live in semi-captivity on over 200 hectares. Visits are made mainly by horse-drawn carriage or by sledge in winter. The trip (around 1 hour) allows the discovery of bisons in their natural habitat. An information space reveals the history of their survival since prehistoric times.  http://www.bisoneurope.com

The Wolves of Le Gévaudan  : more than a hundred wolves (from Canada, Siberia, Mongolia or Poland) live in semi-captivity. On the legendary lands of Gévaudan, these wolves have found safe haven in many wooded hectares of space where you can discover them by taking a guided tour of the park.  http://www.loupsdugevaudan. com

Finally why not ending up your trip with a relaxing break :

Come and discover the benefits of rest, relaxation, well-being, of soothing and cocooning in calming surroundings.  Far from the stresses and strains of daily life, the Lot Valley is the dream destination for unwinding and indulging yourself. Countryside spas were born out of the confluence of an exceptionally well-preserved environment and thermal springs whose benefits have always been enjoyed. La Chaldette resort on the high plateaux of Aubrac offers fitness holidays with or without hiking trips, as well as thermal spa treatments.

In Lot et Garonne, a Nordic sauna, oriental hammam, Japanese bath… at Les Thermes de Casteljaloux Take a veritable Aquatic world tour and try out all the sensations from this new spa complex built on the spring sources for just a few hours and more if you really enjoy it.

 

Did you know that the hottest spring in  Europe is at Chaudes-Aigues (Cantal) where the water comes out at 82°. Caleden, the hot spring and thermal therapy Centre has relaxing therapeutic breaks for everyone! 

And at Cransac-Les-Thermes (Aveyron), they offer therapeutic treatment using hot natural gases, drawn from "la Montagne qui brûle" (burning mountain).

Visit the Lot Valley in winter !

 

The Cahors wines stand out

For the past few years, the AOC* Cahors has been classifying amongst the 100 best wines in the world.

The two specialist American magazines Wine Spectator and Wine Enthusiast just rated 3 vineyards from the Lot Valley (in Soturac and Vire-sur-Lot) amongst the 100 best wines in the world.

Wine Enthusiast chose 2 vineyards from the Lot Valley :

Le Château de Gaudou, cuvée le Sang de la Vigne 2012, is now amongst the 100 best wines in the world.  The owner of the 50 hectares , Fabrice Durou, 7th generation of wine-grower, is delighted. They export 70% of their production to Europe and worldwide.

The Château du Cèdre, cuvée le Cèdre 2010, 100% Malbec, produced in Vire-sur-Lot, is also rewarded.  The production is organic, 80% for the export market (60% to Canada, USA and Japan) so the classification is important for them, mentions the owner, 4th generation of wine-grower.

As for the Wine Spectator, it classified the Château Lamartine 2011 from Soturac. The family run vineyard of 33 hectares exports 60 % of its production. They produce 88 % red Malbec. The  Château Lamartine selected for the classification is 90 % Malbec, 10% Merlot.

 

*AOC (Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée) indicates the geographical origin, quality and (generally) the style of a wine

 

 

Only in the Lot Valley : the Estofinado

It is more than a dish, it is the whole story of the Lot river you will find in your plate. Based on stockfish (dried unsalted cod) that the Nordic boatmen brought with them when they used to transport goods along the Lot two centuries ago.

The name Estofinado comes from the “estofi”, literally “fish stick”, in reference to the fish which is as hard as wood once dried.

To make a good ‘estofinado’, you definitely need Lofoten Isles stockfish, of premium quality. Cods are caught during the winter when they migrate to Norway to spawn. The fish is not salted but it is set to dry on racks in the open air, in the sunshine and the icy cold. The polar weather gives the stockfish its special flavour then! With such a special drying process the fish contains more calories, proteins, phosphorus and calcium than any fresh or salted cod.

In the 18th century, Bordeaux was a big market place for the cod trade and the fishmen used to take the dry fish back to the Lot Valley, hanging it at the front of the gabarre, bathing in the river, it was then arriving rehydrated and perfectly tender for consumption! Cheese, wood, coal, wheat, etc. were conveyed by boat on the river Lot that had been navigable since the Middle Ages. Boatmen then brought back salt, spices and stockfish from the harbour of Bordeaux.

This is why you can only find the Estofinado in the Lot Valley, near the river, in the Aveyron département. You can’t find it in other parts of the département. In Decazeville, during the prosperous mining period, the Estofinado was the miners’ emblematic dish.  

Today, if you want to try this very local specialty, go to Almont les Junies, the capital of Estofinado, in the only remaining restaurant of the village.

In his restaurant in Laguiole, Michel Bras, the 3 Michelin star chef, offers a subtle variation of the recipe with wild herbs.

The recipe :

For 4 persons

  • 800 g of stockfish, or salted dried cod fish
  • 600 g potatoes for mash
  • 150 ml walnut oil
  • 150 ml crème fraîche
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 garlic gloves
  • bunch of parsley
  • salt and pepper

Soak the stockfish during 4 to 5 days, or the cod fish for 1 day (you need to change the water regularly).

Boil 2 eggs (keep the other 2 for later in the recipe)

Mince the parsley and the garlic (keep aside)

The rest of the recipe should be done last minute to guarantee the creaminess of the recipe.

Put the fish in a big pan full of water and cook it during one hour in simmering water and cook the potatoes in the same water.

Once cooked, drain separately the fish and the potatoes.

Crumble the stockfish with a fork, mash the potatoes, slice the boiled eggs.

Then mix the fish, mashed potatoes, boiled eggs and cream.

Add salt and pepper.

In a bowl, beat the remaining 2 eggs, pour the walnut oil. Add this mix to the mash, put back on low fire for one minute and serve immediately.

Decorate with minced parsley.

PS: in some recipes, no cream is added. The Estofinado is served as a main dish but can also be served as appetizer, on top of toasted bread, dipped into walnut oil.

 

Follow the St James Way in the Lot Valley

The Lot Valley opens its byways to pilgrims following the Way of St. James (Santiago de Compostela) from all over Europe. From Lozère to Lot, natural beauty of all kinds will speed you on your pilgrimage.

 

UNESCO world heritage listed

The Way of Saint James crosses France by four different routes which all lead to Compostela in Spain (Galicia), the burial place of St James (Saint-Jacques in French, Santiago in Spanish - all signposts in France referring to St James' Way are marked "Chemin de Saint Jacques").

Each year thousands of pilgrims travel this road, over the different routes, on foot, horseback, mountain bike or bicycle.


The most celebrated of the four French paths is the one beginning at Le Puy en Velay, the "via podiensis", which crosses the Lot Valley, from Lozère to Lot. It is a UNESCO listed feature and mainly follows the grand hiking route n° GR65.

From Nasbinals and Aumont-Aubrac in Lozère, cross the Aubrac plateau to reach Conques in the Aveyron département.

The Aveyronnaise part of the Saint Jacques de Compostelle (GR® 65) covers 102km between the Aubrac and Livinhac-le-Haut in the Lot valley and represents 5 days’ walking.

http://www.tourisme-aveyron.com/en/circuits/walking/saint-jacques-gr65-footpath.php

In the Lot département, you can choose the Cele Valley variant of the path : expect to be distracted by the magnificence of the landscape. Close to the wildlife, you will find travelling companions such as deer, squirrels, eagles or kites - the ecosystem in this valley is fabulously well-preserved. The Grand Hiking Trail n° GR651, overlooking the river, often reveals almost forgotten but always welcoming little villages.

The Grotte du Pech Merle is one of the artistic cradles of humanity, housing paintings dating from up to 24,000 years ago. it is not far from the track and deserves a visit (especially off season) to see the amazing artwork of our ancestors.


Whichever route you take be sure to make the short detour to St. Cirq Lapopie - it is one of the most beautiful villages in France and will enrich your pilgrimage and add an unforgettable stop to your journey.

The path then leaves the Lot Valley when you reach Cahors, where you discover the beautiful cathedral and the town’s secret gardens.

 

Unusual, visit the Musée du Scaphandre

The town of Espalion, in the heart of the Lot Valley, spread between the Lot river.

The image of the bridge reflects in the clam waters of the Lot. Built in the XIII century, it links the two parts of the town : on the right bank, we can admire the architecture of the numerous old tanneries.

Situated on the Via Podiensis of the Saint James Way, Espalion is overlooked by the impressive castle of Calmont d'Olt, where several medieval festivals take place every year.

 www.tourisme-espalion.fr


For Capitain Némo’s dives in “20,000 leagues under the sea”, Jules Verne took his inspiration from the invention in 1860 of the 1st aqua-lung ever conceived by Benoît Rouquayrol and Auguste Denayrouze, both of them from the Aveyron.
Designed in the beginning as a rescue device during firedamp explosions in the mines. This aqua-lung was awarded the grand gold medal at the Universal Exhibition in 1867. The first trials were carried out in the Lot river. Exhibits which are rare if not unique are on display attract specialists from all over the world.

www.museeduscaphandre.com

 

Enjoy the Indian summer in the Lot Valley

 

The Autumn is coming with its beautiful colors, new activities, chestnut festivals in villages, and of course grape harvest.

 

Important time of the year for many areas in the Lot Valley, the harvests bring together families, friends, neighbours, …

 

Why not taking part in this human experience and participate at the creation of a great wine in Aveyron, Lot-et-Garonne and Lot. Hard work, but also rewarding with the good food of the area and the wine of the previous years. All in an amazing scenery! 

 

Chestnut festival 2014 - 18th / 19th October 2014

 As every year in October, almost 25,000 visitors are coming this week-end to take a bite of rustic France at the annual Mourjou Chestnut Festival.

In  the heart of the Lot Valley,  between the Lot and the Aveyron, discover Mourjou and the chestnut that nourished people of the area for ages.

Symbol of the Châtaigneraie cantalienne (chestnut trees protected area), the chestnut tree was suffering since the 1950s from modernisation. In 1990, a group of young inhabitants from Mourjou decided to create a “Chestnut festival” to revive traditions and promote the area. It was a success from start and now attract almost 25,000 visitors during one week-end. 

Half of the 329 inhabitants of Mourjou are taking part in the organisation of this festival which welcome over 80 stallholders from all over the world for food testing, conferences, technical demonstrations, exhibitions, hiking, storytelling, music and dance. 

2 tons of chestnuts grilled and 5.000 liters of cider will be drank over the week-end in a festive atmosphere. 

Take the chestnut discovery trip with the visit of the chestnut museum and its  traditional architecture like a "secadou" (a traditional farm in which chestnut was dryed),  a backer's oven or also a village shop from the 1950s.

 Or enjoy a gastronomic experience with a 5-course meal all cooked with chestnut at the Auberge de Mourjou ; deliciousm especially the chestnut ice-cream!

 

 

One Day in Lozere

Watch these 3 beautiful videos from Lozere Tourisme and discover the upper part of the Lot Valley : 

 

Read about the Lot Valley

Rachel Johnston from French Property News followed the véloroute between Lot-et-Garonne and Lot and gives us her impressions

Read her article here

 

Driven by the Tour de France? Plan cycling holidays in the Lot Valley

From the high plateaux of the Aubrac to the gracious river bends of the Lot, taking in along the way proud medieval cities and perched villages, a host of paths and roads, drown in the perfumes of wild flowers and liberty… The Lot Valley is a paradise for bicycle lovers!

Pilgrims on their bikes! (Aveyron)

The Saint-James way on a bike : the chance to pedal past the places in the département that you mustn’t miss, from Conques to the Aubrac Plateau. 7 cycling trips for all available.

Follow the river on the véloroute (Lot and Lot-et-Garonne)

Imagine little roads very well signposted with just a few ups and downs, along the river Lot.  From the confluence with the Garonne right up to the castle of Bonaguil, and which continues as far as Cahors, in total,160 km of country road that everyone can use. Leaflets with all the trails are available in the Tourist Offices along the route.

Under the shade of the chestnut trees (Cantal)

In the South of Cantal, the Chataigneraie is a protected conservation area, interrupt only by bucolic villages : Marcolès, Montsalvy, and gentle glens.  For a week on the bike, following the little hidden roads with accommodation.

Mende loves cycling (Lozere) 

For the Tour de France followers, Mende will forever be marked by the stage victory by Laurent Jalabert, on Bastille Day in 1995! And there is now a Mountain Bike Park on the Mende Plateau with packages to suit every age, both little and big, to learn about mountain biking.

Visit our page "cycling"

 

The Lot Valley gives you a LOT this summer

The Lot Valley is full of surprises during the summer months :

From July to September, the Valley resonates with music from classical to jazz and world music, Shakespeare in the text, street theatre (days or nights), religious processions, gastronomic events but also unusual festivals like the Square bowls festival or the the Big Jump in Douelle (Lot) – the river Lot takes part once again in the European project to promote the quality of rivers water, this year on the 13th July at 3pm. Have a look at our festivals

Prefer to relax on the beach ? No problem, for its 6th édition Cahors Plage is bringing sand, beach activities to you with a 90m long beach on Cahors bank and another 2000 m2 sand beach just for you pleasure (10th July until 17th August). The quality of water is carefully monitored  and it is completely safe to swim or enjoy water sports in the river Lot. Other supervised beaches can be found on the banks of the Lot or lakes in Lot-et-Garonne, Lot and Cantal.

So don’t hesitate, book your holidays to the Lot Valley now !

 

Festival

For 4 years, the festival «CéléTé» has been offering activities to start the summer in style!

The manifestation, which started originally to support the “Big Jump” (European event which sees on the same day, at the same time,

hundreds of Europeans jumping in rivers to campaign for clean rivers) received 3700 visitors in 2013.

This year,  the water festival offers dozens of free activities and entertainment (swimming, canoeing, beach tennis, climbing, photo exhibition, ...)

during 4 days : 4th to 7th July 2014.

 

VIlleneuve sur Lot celebrates this summer its 750 years!

Villeneuve-sur-Lot, the largest Bastide in the area, was founded in 1264 by Alphonse de Poitiers, brother of Saint Louis. This year it will celebrate its 750 years. As part of the festivities related to the celebration of this anniversary, the town, in partnership with the nautical centre and the EDPS 47 (Centre d’Etude et de Découverte du Paysage de Lot-et-Garonne) offers a trip on the river Lot, on an electric boat, exploring the landscape and heritage of Villeneuve-sur-Lot.

Destined for a family audience, these guided strolls are an invitation to travel through time to discover or rediscover the bastide through all periods from 1264 to the present day, partly through observation games. These boat trips are planned on July 10, 17 , August 7 (2:30pm to 4:30pm) and also on Sunday, September 21.

Something to do every day of the week during the summer :

Mondays :  organic markets with live bands, circus, raffles. From 21st July to 18th August, quai Alsace-Lorraine.

Tuesdays :  free guided tours with Janouille. 8th and 22nd July, 4th and 19th August. Meeting at the Tower of Paris, at 5pm.


Wednesdays
: free concerts with “Les mercredis de la Cale” (every Wednesday in July and August)

Thursdays : boat trips on the river Lot, 10th and 17th July, 7th and 14th August, 2:30 to 4:30pm. Price: € 8 for adults, € 4 for children under 12 years.

Fridays : traditional music – 4th July : Spanish evening with Vent d’Olt and La Tuna from Pampelune, 11th July - bandas with Batterie-fanfare (special evening for the  750 years anniversary), 18th July - jazz with Guacamole, 25th July -  evening pop-rock with Iona, 1st August, jazz and varieties with Jean-Claude François, 8th August - swing with Camarillo, 15th August - pop-rock-soul with Moon Revolution, 22nd August - evening Creole and New Orleans with The Roger's, 29th August - gypsy music with Romano Dandies.

Saturdays : “Saturdays in music”. 19th July with Soulways soul, 26th July with Hyphone, 2nd August with Soulaya, 9th August with Brand New Blues Factory, 16th August with Wood Stock Trio, 23rd August with Los Cucarayos.

Sundays : from 21st July until 18th August at 11am at Park Hospital Saint-Cyr, introduction to Zumba. Between 12pm and 2:30pm, dance demonstrations by the associations. Free.

 

Romeo & Juliet in the Lot Valley

Acclaimed London-based theatre company Antic Disposition comes to the Lot Valley this summer  with their vivid and passionate production of the world's most famous love story : Romeo & Juliet.

 

Presented in English against the backdrop of some of the region’s most beautiful open-air locations, the show promises to be a magical evening of entertainment for the whole family.

 

In the Lot Valley, enjoy the show in Monflanquin – Lot-et-Garonne (6th August),

Lherm – Lot (7th August) and Puy l’Evêque – Lot (14th August)

 

More information on the production and bookings on Antic Disposition website

 

http://www.ad-tour.com/

 

The sheep on their way to the Cantal pastures

Follow the transhumance in the Lot Valley : 29 May - 15 June 2014

The transhumance of the flocks up to the mountain summer pasture is always a crucial moment for life in the Lot Valley and for the third time, it is happening between the départements of Lot and Cantal.

1000 sheep will progress from the Lot to the Lioran in Cantal where they will stay until mid-September.

The occasion to discover the area, the diversity of the scenery, the local products and the ancient traditions of local shepherds and farmers.

Why join us ?

Unique ! It is the third edition of the transhumance between the two départements of Lot and Cantal. It is taking place from 29th May to 15th June 2014 with 16  stages, over 180 km !

Visits of the most emblematic sites of Lot and Cantal : from the Quercy arid soil to the green Lioran resort, the flock and its guides will take you through amazing sceneries.

Preservation of the environment : one of the main objective of this first Lot-Cantal transhumance is environmental : development of the flock for the Lot department shepherds , stop using trucks to take the flock to the summer pastures, reduction of costs and also labour so they can concentrate on farming. For the Cantal department, owner of the Lioran mountain summer pasture, who has to maintain the pastures, the transhumance allows bio-diversity preservation, the sheep helping growing good quality grass, which is essential in the maintain of the snow in the winter season.

Promotion of shepherds trade and discovery of their work (with shepherds dogs demonstration, sheep shearing and wool weaving, …)

Plus lots of entertainment planned in all the villages visited : food testing , gourmet dinner, dance and traditional bands festivals, …

More information on http://www.transhumance.info/

 

Emptying of the Sarrans lake in 2014

This is it! The Sarrans dam opened its drain valves and the lake is now empty!

In order to control and eventually take actions on the parts which are usually under the water, the French government proceeded at the complete drainage of the Sarrans lake this year (the last drainage was in 1979!)

This drainage allows the different partners (including EDF, the French electricity provider) to control the security of the installations and improve the water drainage by creating a new gallery.  

The lake is now empty and the Truyere river found its place again. To make the most of this exceptional event, more than 150 activities are planned throughout the summer. The list of the activities are available here : http://www.sarrans-vidange2014.com/

The lake is to be filled up again from October 2014.

What is the impact on the fauna and flora?

Actions has been taken to prevent or limit effects on the fauna or flora during this operation.

The main focus is to garanty the quality of the water, take into account the lif in the water. To do that, some species had been recovered during the drainage, follow-up of the water quality, special attention given to some species such as otters, bird of preys, …

Photo : At the Tréboul bridge, you can see the remains of a flooded village.

 

 

A new route to reach the Lot Valley

Ryan just opened a new route this month  : London Stansted to Brive airport.

Located in the Corrèze département, only one hour drive from Cahors, this route is convenient to reach the Lot Valley with two flights per week, on Wednesday and Saturday,

RyanAir should increase the traffic at Brive airport by 10 to 12000 passengers per year.

It will be the second route from Brive to England. City Jet also have 2 flights per week (Friday and Sunday) from Brive to London City airport.

More routes are available from the major airports in Britain to Bergerac, Rodez and airports located near the Lot Valley.  

See airports directory

 

Aveyron, the wine becomes a journey

In the area of Conques and Marcillac, two “relais information service” offices just opened to give travellers information about the local wines and the wine route. The president of the AOP Marcillac wine-growers association has been working on that project for the past 10 years, along with 11 independents and 38 members of the cooperative of Valady.

This wine route will allow the Marcillac vineyards to get a proper signage : 71 signposts as well as posts at the entrance of vineyards have been put in place to inform visitors. 

 

The Aubrac plateau, ideal for snow shoeing

Enjoy the winter in the Lot Valley!

The Aubrac plateau is now covered with a magnificent white snow. Up to 55cms snow at the moment in the ski resort of Laguiole in Aveyron. Very light and soft, due to the recent mild temperatures, the snow is ideal for snow shoeing.

Both Laguiole and Brameloup ski resorts have snow shoeing itineraries (see maps below)

From Laguiole, you can now reach Saint Urcize in Cantal.  Lozere département also offers walks in the snow.

Snowshoeing is an excellent way to exercise and enjoy the outdoors at the same time during the winter months. It is a safe sport and an activity for everybody. Children and grown ups will enjoy walking in an amazing scenery and if you are lucky, you might even encounter deers .

 

Happy New Year

The Entente Vallée du Lot team wishes you a wonderful 2014 and hope to see you in the Lot Valley this year.

 

Dreaming of a white Christmas...

With this winter weather forecasts, having a white Christmas in the Lot Valley is not a dream.

If you are looking for quiet family oriented ski resorts, traditional markets, unusual winter activities (dog-sledding, snow shoeing, Nordic sauna, ...) and want to discover this part of France in a different atmosphere, visit the Lot Valley in winter.

The Lot Valley in winter still offers many opportunities and whether you are more of a foody person or like active breaks, you’ll find something for you.  Throughout autumn and winter, markets in Lot and Lot-et-Garonne specialise in capon (corn-fattened chicken), duck, goose and "foie gras" liver, ready for the festive season.
These “fat” markets are in Villeneuve sur Lot (Lot et Garonne) every Saturday morning, from October to March or in Cahors (Lot) every Saturday morning, mi-November to end of December. To learn more about foie gras, visit the Foie Gras museum in Lot et Garonne (www.souleilles-foiegras.com)

Meanwhile, the market town of Lalbenque (Lot), headquarters of the French truffle industry, is getting busy. This is where the nationwide price of truffles is set, and where during the winter months there's the largest weekly truffle market in France which attracts both restaurateurs and tourists alike. First Tuesday in December through to mid-March (2pm onwards)

Many hotels and restaurants offer truffle-themed breaks that include cookery classes, menus, and even truffle-hunting expeditions with pigs or dogs. The truffles begin life underground in May or June, growing during the summer months thanks to the heavy showers and maturing at the start of Autumn. They're ready to be unearthed by winter, usually sniffed out with the help of a specially trained dog or a pig thanks to their characteristic perfume.

The favourite winter dish in Aveyron is estofinado or ‘stockfish’, made from dried North Atlantic cod that traditionally arrived by boat to Bordeaux.  Simmered in water and mixed with mashed potatoes, beaten egg and parsley, it was once a staple winter food but today is served in many gastronomic restaurants, especially near Decazeville.

If you’ve room for dessert, try tourtière – layers of wafer thin pastry topped with slice apples soaked in Armagnac, specialty of Lot et Garonne or chestnut dishes in the Chataigneraie (chestnut trees protected area) in Cantal . 

Nordic skiing, downhill skiing, dog-sledding, the Lot Valley in winter offers “alternative living” stays. With more than 500km of signposted slopes, the ski resorts of Le Mas de la Barque, Les Bouviers, Mont Lozère and the Massif de L’Aubrac in Lozere, as well as Saint-Urcize and Pailherols in Cantal, and Laguiole in Aveyron which is particularly good for families offer you the chance to practice your favourite winter sport in exceptionally beautiful and preserved countryside, across wooded expanses or on the crests along the peaks.

And also unique opportunity to meet bisons and wolves in a natural environment :

European Bisons : naturally found in the wild only in the north of Europe, the European Bison has been reintroduced in La Margeride. Here they live in semi-captivity on over 200 hectares. Visits are made mainly by horse-drawn carriage or by sledge in winter. The trip (around 1 hour) allows the discovery of bisons in their natural habitat. An information space reveals the history of their survival since prehistoric times.  http://www.bisoneurope.com

The Wolves of Le Gévaudan  : more than a hundred wolves (from Canada, Siberia, Mongolia or Poland) live in semi-captivity. On the legendary lands of Gévaudan, these wolves have found safe haven in many wooded hectares of space where you can discover them by taking a guided tour of the park.  http://www.loupsdugevaudan. com

Finally why not ending up your trip with a relaxing break :

Come and discover the benefits of rest, relaxation, well-being, of soothing and cocooning in calming surroundings.  Far from the stresses and strains of daily life, the Lot Valley is the dream destination for unwinding and indulging yourself. Countryside spas were born out of the confluence of an exceptionally well-preserved environment and thermal springs whose benefits have always been enjoyed. La Chaldette resort on the high plateaux of Aubrac offers fitness holidays with or without hiking trips, as well as thermal spa treatments.

In Lot et Garonne, a Nordic sauna, oriental hammam, Japanese bath… at Les Thermes de Casteljaloux Take a veritable Aquatic world tour and try out all the sensations from this new spa complex built on the spring sources for just a few hours and more if you really enjoy it.

Did you know that the hottest spring in  Europe is at Chaudes-Aigues (Cantal) where the water comes out at 82°. Caleden, the hot spring and thermal therapy Centre has relaxing therapeutic breaks for everyone! 

And at Cransac-Les-Thermes (Aveyron), they offer therapeutic treatment using hot natural gases, drawn from "la Montagne qui brûle" (burning mountain).

 

Virtual visits of the Lot Valley

The virtual tour of the Lot Valley web page has been upgraded. Clic on the map to discover 360 degrees photos of the Lot Valley.

With a new style, new views, possibility to search per location or theme, everything has been done to make it easy for you to discover this beautiful region.

Discover the virtual tour

 

Chestnut festival

Come and take a bite of rustic France at the annual Mourjou Chestnut Festival on the 19th and 20th October.

In  the heart of the Lot Valley,  between the Lot and the Aveyron, come and discover Mourjou (Cantal) and the chestnut that nourished people of the area for ages.

Symbol of the Châtaigneraie cantalienne (chestnut trees protected area), the chestnut tree was suffering since the 1950s from modernisation. In 1990, a group of young inhabitants from Mourjou decided to create a “Chestnut festival” to revive traditions and promote the area. It was a success from start and now attract more than 20.000 visitors during one week-end.

Half of the 400 inhabitants of Mourjou are taking part in the organisation of this festival which welcome over 80 stallholders from all over the world for food testing,  conferences,  technical demonstrations,  exhibitions, hiking, storytelling, music and dance. 

2 tons of chestnuts grilled and 5.000 liters of cider drank over the week-end in a festive atmosphere. 

Take the chestnut discovery trip with the visit of the chestnut museum and its  traditional architecture like a "secadou" (a traditional farm in which chestnut was dryed),  a backer's oven or a village shop from the 1950s.

Or enjoy a gastronomic experience with a 5-course meal all cooked with chestnut at the Auberge de Mourjou ; delicious, especially the chestnut ice-cream!

Activities planned during the 2013 festival :

  • 7kms trail in the Chataigneraie with a gourmet snack (2 hours - Saturday 2pm)
    €3 per adults - free for under 12
  • Cooking with chestnuts classes on Saturday and Sunday afternoon
  • Initiation to traditional dances (Saturday afternoon)
  • Story telling in the local dialect
  • Conferences about the chestnut
  • Ball with local producers and band (Saturday evening)
  • 12kms trail for experienced ramblers (3 hours 1/2 - Sunday 8:45am) -
    €3 per person
  • 2 local Michelin starred chefs are cooking the chestnut for you : Serge Vieira and Louis-Bernard Puech
  • Traditional concert in the church (3:30pm - entrance €2)
  • End of festival buffet on Sunday evening with local band (local delicacies and music for €15 per adult and €7 for under 12 - reservation only)

This is only some of the events planned, more activities, talks and entertainment will happen.

While you there, why not visiting the rest of the Lot Valley and it’s many activities and attractions : Conques and its impressive abbey nearby in Aveyron or follow one of the trails through the woods.

 

Call of the deer

Until mid-October, the deer calls out in the forest. If you are visiting Lozere, Aveyron or Cantal, it is a must do : a night walk in the forest to listen to them. 

Mushroom lovers will be spoiled : there'll always be a chance to pick some mushrooms on the way and have them cooked during a friendly evening meal in an authentic stone hut "buron", followed by a night walk to listen to the deers.

Some offers of the French websites : rando aubrac, laguiole and Condom d'Aubrac in Aveyron and also in Lozere.   

 

Fête de la Gastronomie 20-21-22 September

For a few days in September, The Lot Valley , as well as other regions in France, will celebrate French gastronomic experience and heritage.

The annual celebration of French cuisine is coming up fast with a series of events and competitions to be held between 20 and 22 September all around the country. The festival offers the opportunity for amateurs and professionals to promote and share their produce and recipes.

Discover the events available in the Lot Valley :

Aveyron :

Hotel restaurant Hervé Busset (Conques) – the second guest dines for free

Michelin starred restaurant Bras (Laguiole) – menu with 15% to 35% discount

Lot :

Château de Mercuès (Mercuès) – workshops around wines and vineyards

Lot-et-Garonne :

Le Patio d’Hauteville (Penne d’Agenais) – the second guest dines for free

Lozère :

Le Château d’Orfeuillette (La Garde) – the second guest dines for free

Chez Camillou (Aumont-Aubrac) – workshop about beer

More information on the Fete de la Gastronomie website

 

Watch the new video of the Lot Valley

Greentraveller, in partnership with the Entente Vallée du Lot, discovered the Lot Valley and its activities.

The Lot Valley is one of France's best kept secrets. From the beautiful town of Villeneuve-sur-Lot in the west, Cahors and Saint-Cirq Lapopie in the centre, to Mende in the east, this spectacular, ancient region is a wonderful place for a holiday.

The Green Traveller Guide to the Lot Valley will show you how to make the most of a trip to the region. Greentraveller has done the hard work for you - selected the best places to stay, from locally run hotels to self-catering apartments, and the best places to eat, from cafes to quality restaurants and village markets where you can buy fresh, local ingredients. Also feature a range of activities, from visiting hot-water pools to guided hikes and canoeing along the eponymous river.

http://www.greentraveller.co.uk/lot-valley

 

Summer in the water

The summer is the best time to explore the river Lot and its tributaries, and also the lakes where you can now do all sorts of watersports!
Just a stroll, for a weekend or why not for a week: The choice of cruises is endless : boats, barges, canoes…

If you’re looking for a tranquil trip, welcome on board a passenger boat! Or plump for the tame adventure of a house boat, you won’t need a licence and you’ll be able to whatever you want!

A canoeing holiday is the best way to explore every bend of this beautiful waterway and it won’t be as wet as it sounds!

Fishing is also a great activity and you don’t need to be an expert!

For families, more and more recreation areas are opening along the banks of the Lot with many activities for everyone.

For more information visit on the water page

 

Big Jump : a friendly event, open to everyone

As every year since 2010, the river Lot is taking part in the European project Big Jump.

On Sunday 14th July at 3pm, hundreds of Europeans will jump in rivers to campaign for clean rivers.

Clairac, Castelmoron-sur-Lot, Casseneuil, Saint Sylvestre-sur-Lot (47) and Douelle (46) are joining the Big Jump and offer activities and entertainment all afternoon. The idea is to show everybody that the river Lot is clean and safe to swim in.

More information on the event can be found on http://www.rivernet.org/bigjump/welcome.htm

 

Transhumance Lot Cantal

Follow the Sheep Transhumance in the Lot Valley :   1 – 16 June 2013 

The transhumance of the flocks up to the mountain summer pasture is always a crucial moment for life in the Lot Valley and for the second time, it is happening between the départements of Lot and Cantal. 1000 sheep will progress from the Lot to the Lioran in Cantal where they will stay until mid-September.

The occasion to discover the area, the diversity of the scenery, the local products and the ancient traditions of local shepherds and farmers.

Why join us ?

Unique ! It is the second edition of the transhumance between the two départements of Lot and Cantal. It is taking place from 1 to 16 June 2013 with 16  stages, over 180 km !

Visits of the most emblematic sites of Lot and Cantal : from the Quercy arid soil to the green Lioran resort, the flock and its guides will take you through amazing sceneries.

Preservation of the environment : one of the main objective of this first Lot-Cantal transhumance is environmental : development of the flock for the Lot department shepherds , stop using trucks to take the flock to the summer pastures, reduction of costs and also labour so they can concentrate on farming. For the Cantal department, owner of the Lioran mountain summer pasture, who has to maintain the pastures, the transhumance allows bio-diversity preservation, the sheep helping growing good quality grass, which is essential in the maintain of the snow in the winter season.

Promotion of shepherds trade and discovery of their work (with shepherds dogs demonstration, sheep shearing and wool weaving, …)

Plus lots of entertainment planned in all the villages visited : food testing , gourmet dinner, dance and traditional bands festivals, …

Cross beautiful sites

The stages

16 days with 4 main stages : 

Departure of 700 sheep on the 1 June 2013 from Espédaillac in the Célé Valley. On Monday 3, the flock will cross Figeac, Champollion’s town before joining the Châtaigneraie pastures the next day.

In Cantal , at Boisset 300 more sheep will join the flock so it will be 1000 sheep which will arrive on the 16 June at Le Lioran pastures where they’ll spend the summer.

 

Transhumance Saint Chely d'Aubrac

Take part in the Aubrac transhumance 25th and 26th May

Participate in this traditional festival on the Aubrac. At the end of May, after the snow has melted, herds of cows are led to the summer pastures. They are adorned with flowers, plumes, ribbons etc. for a forty or so kilometre climb up to the Aubrac plateau.

You can accompany cows all along the route, take part in the festivals in the villages, enjoy the local markets, milking demonstrations, local gastronomy, decorated herds, folklore…

 

Navigation

Since the 1st of April, the river Lot has been opened to navigation again so why don't join us and visit the beautiful Lot Valley from the river ...

 

White Cahors

After snow falls last week on the Lot Valley, a few inches of snow were covering the Pont Valentré.

 

Happy New Year!

The Entente Vallée du Lot wish you a very good year!

 

Winter in the Lot Valley

The French Lot Valley in winter offers many opportunities and whether you are more of a foody person or like active breaks, you'll find something for you : foie gras, truffles, stockfish for the epicure ; skiing, dog sledging, snow shoeing for the sporty or relaxing spas if you want to indulge yourself.

The Lot Valley in winter still offers many opportunities and whether you are more of a foody person or like active breaks, you’ll find something for you.  Throughout autumn and winter, markets in Lot and Lot-et-Garonne specialise in capon (corn-fattened chicken), duck, goose and "foie gras" liver, ready for the festive season.
These “fat” markets are in Villeneuve sur Lot (Lot et Garonne) every Saturday morning, from October to March or in Cahors (Lot) every Saturday morning, mi-November to end of December. To learn more about foie gras, visit the Foie Gras museum in Lot et Garonne (www.souleilles-foiegras.com)

Meanwhile, the market town of Lalbenque (Lot), headquarters of the French truffle industry, is getting busy. This is where the nationwide price of truffles is set, and where during the winter months there's the largest weekly truffle market in France which attracts both restaurateurs and tourists alike. First Tuesday in December through to mid-March (2pm onwards)

Many hotels and restaurants offer truffle-themed breaks that include cookery classes, menus, and even truffle-hunting expeditions with pigs or dogs. The truffles begin life underground in May or June, growing during the summer months thanks to the heavy showers and maturing at the start of Autumn. They're ready to be unearthed by winter, usually sniffed out with the help of a specially trained dog or a pig thanks to their characteristic perfume.

The favourite winter dish in Aveyron is estofinado or ‘stockfish’, made from dried North Atlantic cod that traditionally arrived by boat to Bordeaux.  Simmered in water and mixed with mashed potatoes, beaten egg and parsley, it was once a staple winter food but today is served in many gastronomic restaurants, especially near Decazeville.

If you’ve room for dessert, try tourtière – layers of wafer thin pastry topped with slice apples soaked in Armagnac, specialty of Lot et Garonne or chestnut dishes in the Chataigneraie (chestnut trees protected area) in Cantal . 

Nordic skiing, downhill skiing, dog-sledding, the Lot Valley in winter offers “alternative living” stays. With more than 500km of signposted slopes, the ski resorts of Le Mas de la Barque, Les Bouviers, Mont Lozère and the Massif de L’Aubrac in Lozere, as well as Saint-Urcize and Pailherols in Cantal, and Laguiole in Aveyron which is particularly good for families offer you the chance to practice your favourite winter sport in exceptionally beautiful and preserved countryside, across wooded expanses or on the crests along the peaks.

And also unique opportunity to meet bisons and wolves in a natural environment :

European Bisons : naturally found in the wild only in the north of Europe, the European Bison has been reintroduced in La Margeride. Here they live in semi-captivity on over 200 hectares. Visits are made mainly by horse-drawn carriage or by sledge in winter. The trip (around 1 hour) allows the discovery of bisons in their natural habitat. An information space reveals the history of their survival since prehistoric times.  http://www.bisoneurope.com

The Wolves of Le Gévaudan  : more than a hundred wolves (from Canada, Siberia, Mongolia or Poland) live in semi-captivity. On the legendary lands of Gévaudan, these wolves have found safe haven in many wooded hectares of space where you can discover them by taking a guided tour of the park.  http://www.loupsdugevaudan. com

Finally why not ending up your trip with a relaxing break :

Come and discover the benefits of rest, relaxation, well-being, of soothing and cocooning in calming surroundings.  Far from the stresses and strains of daily life, the Lot Valley is the dream destination for unwinding and indulging yourself. Countryside spas were born out of the confluence of an exceptionally well-preserved environment and thermal springs whose benefits have always been enjoyed. La Chaldette resort on the high plateaux of Aubrac offers fitness holidays with or without hiking trips, as well as thermal spa treatments.

In Lot et Garonne, a Nordic sauna, oriental hammam, Japanese bath… at Les Thermes de Casteljaloux Take a veritable Aquatic world tour and try out all the sensations from this new spa complex built on the spring sources for just a few hours and more if you really enjoy it.

Did you know that the hottest spring in  Europe is at Chaudes-Aigues (Cantal) where the water comes out at 82°. Caleden, the hot spring and thermal therapy Centre has relaxing therapeutic breaks for everyone! 

And at Cransac-Les-Thermes (Aveyron), they offer therapeutic treatment using hot natural gases, drawn from "la Montagne qui brûle" (burning mountain).

Visit the Lot Valley in winter !

 

Chestnut Festival – 20th and 21st October

Mourjou, Lot Valley 

Every year in October, more than 20,000 visitors come to take a bite of rustic France at the annual Mourjou Chestnut Festival.

In  the heart of the Lot Valley,  between the Lot and the Aveyron, come and discover Mourjou (Cantal) and the chestnut that nourished people of the area for ages.

Symbol of the Châtaigneraie cantalienne (chestnut trees protected area), the chestnut tree was suffering since the 1950s from modernisation. In 1990, a group of young inhabitants from Mourjou decided to create a “Chestnut festival” to revive traditions and promote the area. It was a success from start and now attract more than 20.000 visitors during one week-end.

Half of the 400 inhabitants of Mourjou are taking part in the organisation of this festival which welcome over 80 stallholders from all over the world for food testing,  conferences,  technical demonstrations,  exhibitions, hiking, storytelling, music and dance. 

2 tons of chestnuts grilled and 5.000 liters of cider drank over the week-end in a festive atmosphere. 

 

 

 

Inland Waterways International

L'Entente Vallée du Lot is now a member of Inland Waterways International

(IWI brings together people and organisations who support the conservation, use, development and proper management of inland waterways worldwide. It aims to raise public awareness of the benefits of using waterways for a wide range of activities, from inland water transport to cruising, towpath walking and other recreational uses, as well as appreciating their architectural and landscape values as heritage. It also promotes restoration, where appropriate, of waterways which have become derelict).

 

 

France Discovered

Thanks to the journalist Terry Marsh, a new app is now available about France : France Discovered and it offers several pages on the Lot Valley and its attractions. Easy to browse and very pleasant. Worth a look!

 

Saint Cirq Lapopie

One of the jewels of the Lot Valley was voted "Village préféré des Français" (prefered village of French people) thanks to the huge amount of votes of internet users and tv viewers. Out of 22 selected villages (1 per region), St Cirq Lapopie finished first.

The TV show was on air on the 26th June and gave St Cirq Lapopie and the Lot Valley a nice  highlight before the summer with also reviews in all the national magazines and newspapers.

 

Follow the sheep transhumance Lot - Cantal 3-17 June

      Transhumance mouton   The transhumance of the flocks up to the mountain summer pasture is always a crucial moment for life in the Lot Valley and this year for the first time, it is happening between the départements of Lot and Cantal.

700 sheep will progress from the Lot to the Lioran in Cantal where they will stay until mid-September.

The occasion to discover the area, the diversity of the scenery, the local products and the ancient traditions of local shepherds and farmers.

PR Follow the sheep transhumance

 

WELCOME !

Photo

Welcome

Discover the new version of the site " The Lot valley ".
A site for every knowledge on this major destination! Grand landscapes, heritage, navigation, gastronomy.. Do not hesitate any more and join us!

 
 
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