Walking the Via Podiensis from Aumont Aubrac to Conques
On our 2nd section of Via Podiensis, the Camino runs between Aumont-Aubrac and Conques. The area the Camino crosses is almost legendary on Via Podiensis or Le Puy Route as it goes through the austere high Aubrac plateau, an isolated landscape, home to green and dormant volcanoes. The second half of the walking holiday enters the livelier Lot valley.
This trip createstonne(s) of CO2, we offset it for free
This charming little village is nestled around the church of Sainte-Marie de Nasbinals. A jewel of Romanesque art in Aubrac with its eye-catching octagonal bell tower the church has also be recognised as an UNESCO World Heritage Site. Relax in this typical French country village taking in the beauty of your surroundings.
Emerging from the woods into a green valley you will discover the town of Saint-Chély d’Aubrac in the clearing and enter the town by the old bridge as many pilgrims have done before you. This Pilgrim Bridge, which is on the UNESCO World Heritage List, is topped by the cross of Saint-Chély. In the town be sure to also visit the Saint Eligius church with its double tribunes and its 14th century altarpiece.
Listed as one of the most beautiful villages of France, it does not disappoint. The medieval houses surrounded by the mountains and forests give it a fairy-tale feel. The main attraction is the Abbey that was built between the 10th and 12th Century and has been welcoming pilgrims ever since not only on the way to Santiago de Compostela but also to venerate the relics of Sainte Foy. The Tympanum of the Last Judgement above the main door is considered one of the major art works of the 12th Century. Its 124 figures depicting your fate should you end up in hell is really quite a sight to see.
Aumont-aubrac to Conques
Le Puy Camino
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Aumont-Aubrac is a typical village of the area. You will see the transition between the rounded hills of Allier département and gateway to the high plateau of mythic Aubrac, and its endless austere and inspiring volcanic lands, part of the Massif Central. The town has always been strongly linked to the Camino, as back in the medieval times this is where pilgrims coming from the East on Via Podiensis rested before facing the upcoming stark and isolated lands of Aubrac.
Day 2 26km
As we leave Aumont-Aubrac, we start our way towards the inspiring Aubrac high plateau, walking on walled tracks, with endless flat grassland surrounding us. Typical Aubrac cows grazing there bring life between sleepy villages and farmhouses. The walk ends up in Nasbinals, a charming village with a Romanesque church.
Day 3 16.1km
ST CHELY D'AUBRAC
Today, the Camino reaches one of its highest points as we climb up to 1370metres before walking down to the historic hamlet of Aubrac, a legendary stage on Via Podiensis. The whole walk between Nasbinals to Saint-Chély d’Aubrac is listed at the UNESCO World Heritage sites.
Day 4 22.8km
ST CHELY D'AUBRAC
Soon after crossing over Saint-Chély Bridge, we leave the typical scenery of the Aubrac to enter chestnut and beech woods. After this, we notice a more populated area and we reach medieval Saint-Come-d’Olt, one of the “prettiest villages of France”. It is then a nice stroll, climbing up a bit before getting down to the charming village of Espalion, on the banks of the Lot River.
Day 5 26.7km
Along the walk, the area is home to well preserved treasures from the past, part of the UNESCO World Heritage site list. First, we head to the beautiful Romanesque church of Béssuéjouls and its upper chapel hidden in the 11th century steeple. Then, we reach Estaing, a medieval village topped by its impressive castle. We then continue along the Lot River, before climbing up to Montégut. The Camino then runs through woods and countryside before reaching yet another pretty village, Golinhac.
Day 6 20.5km
Countryside and peaceful woodland will be our backdrop all day long during this easy walk. We have some time to wander around the charming village of Espeyrac on the bank of the river and to admire the old castle in Sénergues. Finally, we arrive in Conques, one of the nicest towns on the whole Via Podiensis or Le Puy Route!
After breakfast we bid you farewell.
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