Saint-Chely-d'Aubrac is nestled in the heart of the valley hollowed out by the Boralde de Saint-Chély, halfway between the Aubrac plateau and the Lot valley. Unmissable passage of several great hiking trails, tourism is one of the activities that sustains this small village in Aveyron. Its heritage is strongly linked to the pilgrimage, the church and the Pilgrims' bridge are the main witnesses. Do not hesitate any longer and come and visit Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac, its atmosphere will charm you.

A little tour in Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac

Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac is a village in Aveyron located about 810 meters above sea level, nestled in the heart of a steep-sided valley carved out by the boralde. Boraldes are streams which originate from the Aubrac plateau and which flow into the Lot. Its geographical location, close to the departments of Lozère and Cantal, makes it a excellent base for a visit to Aubrac, whether by walking or by road.

The houses, witnesses of the ancient history of the village

While strolling in the streets of the village, you will be able to see houses with very different styles. On Avenue d'Aubrac, the main street of Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac, the houses are rather imposing, bourgeois. They attest to the extension of the village at the beginning of the XNUMXth century. It grew when the families expatriated to Paris to find work returned to the country.

Continuing to the center of the village, you can see older houses, some of which are corbels and half-timberings dating from the XNUMXth century. The Tower, now transformed into a guest room, dates from the end of the Middle Ages. This diversity proves the ancient existence of Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac.

André Meravilles
House of Saint-Chely-d'Aubrac
Tourism in Aubrac
Saint-Chely-d'Aubrac Pilgrims' Bridge

The Pilgrims' Bridge, a key monument

The steep street leading down to the pilgrims bridge was that of weavers. This trade was very present in the past, to the point of having their representation, two shuttles, affixed to the coat of arms of the town.

The bridge dates from the XNUMXth century and spans the village of Saint-Chely below the village. On the parapet, you can admire the beautiful stone cross which bears a bas-relief representing a pilgrim, with its large cape (caperine), its staff (staff) and a rosary. Even today, this bridge is taken by walkers from all over the world who walk on the Route from Puy-en-Velay to Santiago de Compostela. The monument is also inscribed on the World Heritage List by UNESCO as part of the cultural property Way of Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle in France.

A unique church

The first church in the village dates from the 1385th century. In XNUMX, bands of mercenaries plundered the town and set fire to the church. It was immediately rebuilt thanks to the impetus of the Dômerie d'Aubrac. The current bell tower is a old watchtower which explains its rather austere appearance.

The interior is also full of surprises. The double wooden grandstands are uncommon in the region. They are found more towards the south-west of France, especially in the Basque Country. The church being too small to accommodate all the faithful and its extension made impossible by its location in the village, stands were built to compensate for this lack of space. The church also houses an altarpiece dating from the XNUMXth century, one of the first in Europe.

André Meravilles
Church of Saint-Chely-d'Aubrac

To learn more about Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac

If you want to discover the village in more detail, follow our local guide, a resident of the village. Through a circuit, she will tell you the history of the town and the anecdotes that have marked it. In season, find these visits regularly from the tourist office.

Between plateau and valley

Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac is the link between the Aubrac plateau, with its vast expanses and the Lot valley and its beautiful villages. Take the road to the plateau, you can contemplate the breathtaking view of the pastures. Stop to see the shimmering reflections of a natural lake and the exceptional botanical richness of the region. To find out more about the specificities of Aubrac, take a break at the Maison de l'Aubrac and the Botanical Garden, in the village of Aubrac. Not far from there, you can venture to Laguiole to discover the production of Laguiole AOP, this local cheese so good to taste.

Going down into the Lot valley, you can stroll through the medieval streets of several villages classified among the Most Beautiful Villages of France : Sainte-Eulalie-d'Olt, Saint-Côme-d'Olt and its twisted bell tower and Estaing and its castle. On Friday morning, walk the aisles of the Espalion market, bustling riverside town.

Ideal for outdoor activities

In addition to its heritage, Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac is a perfect starting point for practicing nature activities. During your trip, you will inevitably find activities that suit you.

An essential passage on the long-distance hiking trails

  • The best known of all is the way of Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle. Around 20 pilgrims take this mythical route, from Le Puy-en-Velay to Conques and beyond. From the plateau, walkers descend towards the Lot valley as far as Saint-Côme-d'Olt, passing through the village. The section of the Nasbinals – Aubrac – Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac trail is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. It is one of the undisputed riches of Occitania.
  • Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac is also a stage of the road to Saint-Guilhem-le-désert, which starts from Aumont-Aubrac to Gard. This route crosses the high plateaux of Aubrac and ventures as far as the Cévennes.
  • To discover Aubrac closer to nature, the best way is to take the Tour of the Monts d'Aubrac. This path allows you to go around the plateau in a few days of walking and to appreciate all its uniqueness.

skiing in winter

En winter, the snow-covered paths are no longer passable, but the municipality is not without assets. About ten kilometers away, you can exert yourself by hurtling down the slopes of Alpine skiing, marvel at nature covered in a white coat as you walk along the marked hiking trails in snowshoes or cross-country skiing. Winter in Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac also happens at the resort of Brameloup skiing. Also not far away, you can rediscover the joys of skiing at the ski resort. Laguiole skiing.

A paradise for fishermen

Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac is central for practicing the Peach with nearby lakes and rivers. You can spend some family time at Picades lake next to Brameloup. For the more seasoned, the lake of Castelnau-de-Mandailles is one of the most famous lakes in the department for carp fishing.

Birthplace of the Aubrac breed

Besides tourism, theagriculture and l'Livestock are the activities that bring the region around the village to life. Cow breeding, whether for the milk that is sold to the Cooperative Fromagère Jeune Montagne to make Laguiole PDO, or else for the meat with Aubrac cows, endemic to the plateau, is predominant in the region.

Above the village, the Borie resort is the cradle of Aubrac breed. It is the organization for evaluating the breeding males of the breed, which is responsible for the selection, distribution and promotion of the Aubrac breed.

Borie Race Aubrac station

Traditional festivities around breeding

Jean-Denis Auguy
Transhumance Aubrac

THELivestock pace the life of the region whether at work or festivities. The livestock fairs were once very numerous and lively. Today, this tradition has been somewhat lost, but continues with the Aubrac breed competition, which takes place every year at the end of October on the place du fairground. The most beautiful specimens of the breed are presented there.

In the spring, it's the feast of the Transhumance which punctuates the life of the town. It is the key event of the year, the moment when the herds go up on the mountain pasture plateau. This traditional festival attracts around 10 people every year and brings the whole region to life for a weekend.

Need a helping hand?

If you cannot make your choice on the activities to do, or if you want more detailed information, our the Tourist Office in Saint-Chély-d'Aubrac is open all year round. For example, we can advise you on a hiking trail, give you a list of hotels and accommodation or even must-visit places. All our suggestions are grouped together in the form of idea book, which will help you prepare for your trip and tell you about places to visit and must-see activities in the area.

Farm. Opens tomorrow at 09:30 p.m.
Avenue d'Aubrac 155 Route de Bonnefon
12470 St-Chely-d'Aubrac
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