The Gorges du Tarn, Gorges de la Jonte and Gorges de la Dourbie have a remarkable collection of historic buildings, often located on sunny hillsides or along winding roads : castles (Peyrelade), villages perched on the side of a cliff (Saint Véran, Montméjean) or built on rocky promontories (old Gallic look-out post at Cantobre), troglodyte sites (St Marcelin), picturesque buildings (Moulin de Corp)... Absolute gems and a delight to look at !
Don’t forget the more spread out villages like Nant and St Jean du Bruel which have pretty little medieval squares, or the lauze-roofed farms on the Causse, typical of the area and its mixed farming method known as ‘agropastoralisme’ which is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage.
The gorges are ideal for white-water sports like aqua trekking, canyoning and rafting and their rocky cliffs are a favourite haunt of rock-climbers. Fishermen are not forgotten as the River Dourbie is a major spot for wild brown trout. Trail-running, walking and Enduro mountain biking enthusiasts are well catered for too. There are lots of cycle trails along roads at the heart of the gorges like the Circuit de la Dourbie and the Circuit du Larzac. It is not by chance that major sporting events like the Course des Templiers and Natural Games are held on the outskirts of the gorges.
The area is rich in family attractions like Noria, the Maison de l’Eau at St Jean-du-Bruel, farm visits, easy walks and little beaches, just right for swimming. Remember to look up to watch vultures performing their aerial ballet above you. Griffon vultures and monk vultures were reintroduced into the gorges during the 1980s with the help of the Parc National des Cévennes and the Ligue pour la Protection des Oiseaux (League for the Protection of Birds). Today, two other species of birds of prey, the Egyptian vulture and the bearded vulture, have taken up residence too.
You simply can’t come to Aveyron without visiting food speciality producers ! Discover the skills and expertise of saffron-growers, beekeepers, farmers, fish farmers and charcutiers who play an essential part in local gastronomy. Stroll around local markets and visit local producers to taste local speciality dishes like flaune, melsat, bleu des causses cheese, Côte de Millau wine and lots more.
What to do in the Gorges du Tarn, Gorges de la Jonte and Gorges de la Dourbie
Walking, horse riding, walking with donkeys, fishing, canoëing, kayaking, paddleboarding, canyoning, aqua trekking, etc.
Festival des Templiers (Trail-running); Natural Games: extreme sports including canoeing, rock-climbing, paragliding, slacklining, Enduro mountain biking.
Via Ferrata, rock-climbing, Accroparc treetop adventure, caving, 4x4 offroad trails....
Visit : Hilltop villages (‘perché’), churches, castle, Lacaune sheep farm, Roquefort cheese caves, vineyards and wine cellars, art and craft workshops
Visit Producers : saffron grower, honey farm, fish farm
Noria, (an exhibition about water) at St Jean du Bruel