From Villefranche de Rouergue, following the GR, discover villages perched between sky and earth: Cordes-sur-Ciel, Najac, Capdenac-le-haut, Saint-Cirq Lapopie… all labeled Grand Site Occitanie.

8 days, 7 nights from 890€/person

6 days of roaming hiking

Difficulty ***

Stay organized by the Balaguere

The detailed program

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Day 1: arrival in Villefranche de Rouergue

Day 1: arrival in Villefranche de Rouergue

come by train

Possibility to arrive by train (Villefranche de Rouergue SNCF station) or by car.

Book your tickets

Villefranche de Rouergue is a medieval bastide with a rich architectural heritage. Located at the confluence of two rivers: the Aveyron and the Alzou, it is one of the emblematic hearts of Grand Site Bastides and Gorges of Aveyron. Take the time to stroll through its streets and discover its must-see monuments: the Chartreuse Saint-Sauveur, XNUMXth century monastery, masterpiece of Flamboyant Gothic and the Chapel of the Black Penitents, a XNUMXth century Baroque chapel which has retained a remarkable ornate wooden vault.


Day 2: Villefranche de Rouergue – Najac

You take the direction of Monteils, a pleasant village located at the entrance to the Aveyron gorges. Depending on the day and time, be sure to visit the Carles Farm (by reservation only). Jacques Carles, passionate about his land, will introduce you to his duck breeding. Rillettes, fritons… You can enhance your lunchtime picnic.

After this break on the edge of the stream, head for the village of Najac classified among The most beautiful villages in France. You will see during the course Najac fortress who watches over the Bastide and its inhabitants. The visit of the royal fortress will offer you an unobstructed view of the town which extends over a rocky outcrop overlooking the river in a grandiose site: meanders on one side, sandstone cornice on the other, rocky ridge...

Night in a bed and breakfast and dinner with a master restaurateur.

Day 3: Najac – Laguepie

In the morning, visit the village of Najac, the governor's house, interpretation space of architecture and heritage of the Bastides of Rouergue,St. John's Church, the first gothic church in Rouergue (southern gothic) and the royal fortress. This visit will offer you an unobstructed view of the town which extends over a rocky outcrop overlooking the river in a grandiose site: meanders on one side, sandstone cornice on the other, rocky ridge...

Did you know?

Built by the Counts of Toulouse on an old fortified castle from the 6,80th century, the fortress of Najac remains a witness to the military architectural genius of the Middle Ages. Its extraordinary defensive power is highlighted by a large scale model. The dungeon houses XNUMX meter archers… the highest in the world!

Najac, one of the most beautiful villages in France

In the afternoon, a short hike awaits you in a natural and wild setting. You will cross the Saint Blaise bridge, a XNUMXrd century historical monument in the direction of Laguépie.

You will then go back up through the undergrowth, to the summit: a superb view of the village of Najac. Then you will cross a forest of Douglas fir before descending into the wild gorges of Aveyron. The rest of the hike will be very easy; you will follow the banks to Laguépie.

Night and dinner in a Gîte de France 3 ears of corn bed and breakfast in Laguépie.

Hike from Najac to Laguépie

Day 4: Laguépie – Cordes sur Ciel

Today's stage will be short to allow you to take full advantage of Cordes-sur-Ciel, Gothic city between earth and sky. Contemplate the sumptuous residences with sculpted facades and push open the doors of the many craftsmen's stalls.

This is where you will complete your 3 stages on the road from Conques to Toulouse, jacquaire link route between the route of Le Puy and the route of Arles.

Night and dinner in a 2 or 3* hotel-restaurant.


Day 5: Cordes sur Ciel – Figeac – Capdenac Le Haut

Train connection

In the morning you will join Figeac by train. You will be welcomed on your arrival at the station to hand over your luggage to the taxi, which will take care of putting it down at your stage this evening.

Take the time to visit Figeac, labeled City of art and history but also classified Great sites of Occitania. Merchants' houses, Romanesque abbey, squares and meeting places, the whole heart of the city reveals its history and secrets to you.

One of the city's must-sees: the  Champollion Museum, devoted to the history of the writings of the world and to Egyptology. The visit can continue on the Place of Scripture, a reproduction of the Rosetta Stone, overlooked by terraced gardens planted with Egyptian papyrus.

On foot, you will then take the direction of Capdenac-le-Haut, village classified among The most beautiful villages in France in the Lot. For some historians, this charming village is none other thanUxellodunum, the last Gallic village that resisted Caesar. This episode reported in the Gallic Wars was very real. The siege by the Romans lasted nearly 2 months. It was in Quercy, a former Cadurque country.

Then descent to the Lot valley to reach your accommodation for this evening where you can enjoy the outdoor swimming pool.

Night in a 2** hotel and dinner on site in this family inn where local products and traditional cuisine smell.

Day 6: hike on the Célé variant

Transfer to the Abbey of Marcilhac sur Célé where you can visit the old Benedictine abbey with the ruins of the adjoining cloister; the whole is classified as historical monuments. You can also discover the 2nd oldest tympanum in Europe embedded in the fascinating Romanesque remains left in the open.

You will then go hiking on a path between earth and sky. This walk between valley and causse offers views of the Célé, its cliffs, its Mediterranean vegetation, its meadows and crops at the bottom of the valley.

In Sauliac-sur-Célé, you can observe the XNUMXth century Château de Géniez and old houses in the cliff. A little further down the path you will reach Cuzals Ecomuseum which offers an original discovery of the rural and agricultural history of the Lot.

In the afternoon, arrival in Cabrerets, a typical Quercy village nestled in the bottom of the valley at the foot of the steep cliff of Rochecourbe. There still remains a XNUMXth century castle as well as the ruins of a XNUMXth century troglodyte castle, the Devil's castle (or English castle).

In summer, you can enjoy a beach downstream from the Cabrerets mill.

Night and dinner in a 2** hotel on the edge of the Célé.

Day 7: Cabrerets – Pech-Merle – Saint Cirq – Lapopie

After climbing the hill, you will arrive at the summit of Pech Merle where the famous decorated cave from the Paleolithic is located. It is one of the most beautiful caves prehistoric with authentic paintings of more than 20.000 years including the famous punctuated horses. A single ticket will allow you to visit both Pech Merle cave as well as the Amédée Lemozi museum.

The walk will continue towards Bouziès passing at the foot of the famous parade of the English of Bouziès. The latter is located near the suspension bridge, from which you can observe the high cliffs which welcome large crows, jackdaws and sometimes peregrine falcons.


On the other side of the bridge, there is the possibility of taking a barge cruise on the Lot, renting a boat without a license or going one way to Saint-Cirq-Lapopie (in summer only) with Saint-Cirq Lapopie Cruises.

If you choose to continue on foot towards Saint-Cirq Lapopie, you will take the old towpath, part of which was dug directly into the limestone cliff above the Lot. The low relief was carved and evokes the environment according to the vision of a Toulouse artist. Depending on the time of your visit to the Ganil lock, you can watch the operation of a manual lock for the passage of boats.

You will then reach Saint-Cirq-Lapopie, clinging to a cliff 100 meters above the Lot. This medieval village is classified among The Most Beautiful Villages of France which has Great Sites of Occitania.

You will then meet at the beach at 13 p.m. for a transfer to Villefranche de Rouergue. At the end of the day, you will still have a little time to take advantage of your free tickets to Villefranche de Rouergue, city of the Land of Art and History "Les Bastides du Rouergue" and labeled “The 100 most beautiful detours in France”.

Dinner in one of the restaurants in the town center and night in a charming bed and breakfast or a hotel (your choice) in Villefranche de Rouergue.

8 Day: end of stay in Villefranche de Rouergue

To end your journey you can take the time to visit the city before leaving.

Trip organized by La Balaguère

This roaming trip is organized by the La Balaguère travel agency. Contact their team for any information or reservation requests.

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