On this 4th section of Le Puy Route, the Camino goes from beautiful Cahors to charming Lectoure and crosses both the Lot and Garonne Valleys. The green rounded hills of the area, added to a rich historical heritage, make this leg of the Camino a beautiful walking holiday for anybody seeking both natural and cultural sites. And with numerous medieval buildings at almost every stopover, the region has plenty to offer to modern pilgrims!
Montcuq is an essential stopping point on the Le Puy Camino, here you will find a rich historical and built heritage. The Tower of Montcuq is a must visit for views over the town and surrounding countryside. Built at the beginning of the 13th century for the Counts of Toulouse the town developed around it. Taken by the English in the Hundred Years War the town was left in ruins, and the re-building of the town gives it the look it has today with many half timbered houses. Be sure to visit the church of Saint-Hilaire with its group of stained-glass windows in vibrant colours tracing the lives of Christ and Saint-Hilaire. The church of Saint-Privat is also worthy of a visit to see its remarkable stained-glass window depicting the 1914-1918 war.
UNESCO World Heritage Site - Moissac Abbey
The architecture of the Moissac Abbey is a masterpiece of Romanesque art. The most famous parts being the door on the south entrance to the Church of Saint-Pierre and the Abbey’s cloister. The door dates from the 12th Century and has a finely sculpted tympanum depicting Christ in Majesty and the Apocalypse according to St. John. The prestigious cloister has 76 superb sculpted capitals, dating from the late 11th century that are adorned with narrative scenes about the lives of the saints and biblical scenes. A real gem for lovers of religious art to admire! Adding to the charm and serenity of the whole place is a large cedar tree that is over 200 years old. If you are lucky enough to be passing by in the Summer months you may get an opportunity to experience one of the many classical music concerts that take place.
Perhaps unassuming as you approach the town, as it looks similar to others you have passed through with its stone buildings and wooden shuttered windows, but once into the centre of town it reveals a sense of history and surprise! Here you will find Gallo-Roman archaeology from the 2nd and 3rd Century, the ancient Fountain of Diana that was restored in the 13th Century as well as the crowning jewel of the town the Cathedral of St. Gervais and St. Protais. The surprise then comes when you discover than since the 1950’s Lecoutre has been known for its Melon growing! The climate and limestone-clay soil in the area is particularly suited to the production of melons. Sample the melon with local ham or even as a sorbet! If you are lucky enough to be passing by on August 15th you will get to experience their annual Melon Festival!