How to recognise the different essences of the Viaur Valley? An arranged path of 5km will lead you into the bottom of the Valley, along the river for a enjoyable promenade.
This walk, made for families, will surprised you with its fantastic view on Thuriès castle, the dam and the Viaur valley. You’ll go along the artificial lake’s border and you’ll go back up to the undergrowth. In Pampelonne, keep your eyes peeled and you will discover the traditional little patrimony : secador (chestnuts dryer), wells, dovecotes…
Between moors, pastures and forests, this hike will plunge you into the wild and mysterious world of the Viaur valley. You’ll go to encounter the two pearls of the valley : the church and the abandoned village of Las Planques and the feudal site of Thuriès. On the road, the panoramas on the gorges and the rolling plateau of the Ségala will charm experienced hikers. Two starting points are suggested for this path : from Pampelonne Foirail’s square or from Las Planques car park.
Crespin is a beautiful village laid on a rocky headland allowing to embrace the horizon until the Albigensen plains. The stream, with the lovely name of “Andouquette”, runs down to the valley bottom. Throughout this ramble, you will stroll between green grasslands and groves, and you will discover the ruins of Andouque castle, the mills vestiges, Peyre-Levada dolmen : so many testimonies of our ancestors’ passage since time immemorial.
This hike on the hills surrounding Monestiés offers, a beautiful view on the medieval village and on the Ségala’s valleys called « puechs »… After passing through the Lauzeral forest, you will roam in the Cérou valley’s meanderings, by the old railway of Carmaux-Monestiés. Think about taking a torch, you will go through a tunnel to reach Monestiés.
On the Cérou left bank, stream flows from Aveyron, between the medieval cities of Cordes and Monestiés, rises through woods, the bourg de Salles. Nestle around its church, listed historical monument, shelters four classifyed statues which embody the four vertues. It gives us a glimpse of its historical vestiges. A donjon, few towers today embedded in the facades, scars of the castle and of the fortified wall, prove again, how was life during the Middle Ages.
This familial hike around Fontbonne lake will show you its dam, built in the early XXth Century, in order to meet the needs on drinking water of the Carmausin’s basin. This shady tour offers a great variety of landscapes between the Céret valley and the Ségala’s plateau, with a view on the lake. On the Céret, two walkways had been converted to make the river crossing easier for walkers.
Perched on its rocky ridge dominating the Viaur valley, Jouqueviel village, from the Occitan « joc », perch, and « veilh », old, has a suitable name. Its castle’s ruins remain testimonies of the feudal life, having bravely resisted to the ravages of time and to assaults during English or Religious wars. During the Second World War, the Viaur valley became a place of resistance. In 1944, the 6th of August, the Nazis attacked the village which was partly plundered and burnt, made 29 victims, both from resistants and civils.
At the heart of the plateau, between cultivated meadows and pastures dedicated to cattle breeding, you’ll walk on the whim of narrow paths surrounding by low walls called « Paredous ». Then, it will take you to Suech, Typical village of the Ségala, with its alleys and its big farms… Finally the old railway of Carmaux – Cordes, parallel to the Cérou, will take you back to the starting point.
Born on the high plateau of Aveyron, the Viaur valley and its meanderings carry legends, beliefs and popular traditions. It is the Ségala’s soul. Once, the Viaur water mills insured the cereal milling, the mining oil, the linen pressing, the sawing wood. Nowadays, testimonies of the rural and secret life of the valleys remain.