Perched at an altitude of 1 meters, in the heart of the Aubrac regional natural park of which it is the seat, the village of Aubrac is one of the emblematic sites of the plateau. Located at the crossroads of the departments of Aveyron, Cantal and Lozère, it is a true witness to the economic, human and agricultural history of the territory. The village, now popular with pilgrims, is an essential passage of the GR65, Way of Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle of the Way of Puy-en-Velay. It has in the past been a refuge for people passing through and the sick. The village will seduce you for the tranquility of its environment, in the heart of scenery breathtaking, in wilderness.
A stopover in the village of Aubrac
Visitors looking for authenticity and a change of scenery, take a timeless break by going to the small village of Aubrac located near Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac. Explore the remains of the old Dômerie and hospital, visit its church and taste the local gastronomy with a aligoth in a fugitive. To take advantage of the immensity of nature that surrounds you, lovers of hiking can take a portion of the GR65 in the footsteps of pilgrims on the Way to Santiago de Compostela. With this 18 km round trip itinerary, soak up the atmosphere of this very special place, isolated in the heart of thevast pastures.
Even today, the least informed tourist cannot remain indifferent to the spectacle that has suddenly arisen, while the clouds and gusts of this fortress parade, planted alone, like a challenge to the expanse, among an apocalypse setting...
a little history…
The history of Aubrac, or " Viola Braco meaning "high place", dates back to the XNUMXth century and its history is inseparable from the pilgrimage to Saint-Jacques de Compostela.
"IN LOCO HORRORIS AND VASTAE SOLITUDINIS" : The legend tells that Adalard, a Flemish noble who was going to Santiago de Compostela, crossed the plateau and made a vow, if he got out of the dangers of Aubrac, to build in these " places of horrors and vast loneliness », a domiery to welcome pilgrims. In 1120, he founded a group of knights there to accompany and defend pilgrims against brigands. They erected the first buildings of the monastery-hospital to serve the poor.
Subsequently, monks and nuns joined them around the Dom (title of the priors of the community who succeeded him). The breadth of hospitality made it possible to distribute up to 5 loaves of bread per day and simultaneously accommodate 000 people. The monks undertook the deforestation and the installation of the breeding on Aubrac. The significant development of the reception of pilgrims before the end of the XNUMXth century led to the construction of a large reception hospice (nave of the current church). The Dômerie d'Aubrac prospered until the end of the Middle Ages. The Revolution will sound the end of its power and the monastery will be partly destroyed. Today a few vestiges remain :
- the Church of Our Lady of the Poor (XNUMXth century)
- The Tower of the English (XIVth century)
- The Hospital (XNUMXth century)
From the end of the 1th century, a tourism of fresh air and whey cures developed in Aubrac. Thus, the first vacationers on the Aubrac stayed in the big hotels of Laguiole and Aubrac, and went to the burons when the cheese was being made to drink a glass of whey. This one called “gaspe” in Occitan had purgative properties… ideal for slimming cures. The mountain climate of Aubrac and its altitude between 000 and 1 meters are also conducive to fresh air cures.
The English Tower
Today an unusual stopover on the road to Conques, this XNUMXth century tower was built to defend itself from the English during the Hundred Years War.
the Church of Our Lady of the Poor
Built at the foundation of the monastery, in the XNUMXth century, its raw architecture marks the hostile character of the mountain and responds to the austere and functional principles of architecture of the Cistercian monks. It houses the "bell of the lost" where one can read "Jubilee for God, sing for the clerics, cast out demons, recall the lost". This bell served as a sound guide for walkers crossing the plateau in bad weather and thus helped them find their way to the village. This bell knew many ordeals, it was broken and melted several times and was stolen by the inhabitants of Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac, to finally return to Aubrac.
the house of Aubrac
Impossible to miss the House of Aubrac. Come and discover this atypical place, stroll through the cultural spaces dedicated to heritage and exhibitions. Enjoy a toast at the gourmet bar, discover the local products offered in the delicatessen area or relax and enjoy the panorama from the terrace. The House welcomes you from April to October to help you discover the Aubrac heritage and the region's must-sees. Just below, discover the more than 650 plant species present on the plateau during a visit to the Botanical Garden.
the royal Aubrac, a must
You can't miss it. With its somewhat icy appearance, near the village it overlooks, stands the Royal Aubrac. A former sanatorium inaugurated in 1902, its primary vocation was to care for the sick and tuberculous, hence its isolation. This place subsequently hosted summer camps at the end of the XNUMXth century before being abandoned for several decades. It is currently being renovated to become a place of accommodation and thus give new life to this place with such an unusual history and appearance.
Events in Aubrac
In May, live the Transhumance Festival.
An ancestral tradition, it takes place every year in the spring and corresponds to the rise of the herds towards the mountain pastures, where the beautiful Aubrac cows will spend the season before descending again at the end of October. On this occasion, the village is transformed to welcome the curious who come to attend this unmissable event. Come and admire the herds adorned with their wreaths of flowers and decorations, stroll around the country market and enjoy the planned entertainment.