unusual natural sites
The Aveyron has a great diversity of scenery and crossing the département, you are quickly struck by the changing landscape: from the arid land of the Causses du Larzac to the high volcanic plateau of the Aubrac passing via the Rougier de Camarès, you quickly realise that it is a land conducive to impressive natural sites that are unusual at times.
Don’t hesitate! Walk around the “Trou” de Bozouls (Bozouls “hole”), make out the shapes of the rocks at the chaos of Montpellier le Vieux, descend the meanders of the prehistoric caves at Foissac, go for a romantic walk on the Presqu'île de Laussac (Laussac peninsula).
The omnipresent flora
In the south, on the arid land of the Causse du Larzac bathed in the Mediterranean and oceanic climates, both mountain and Mediterranean garrigue scenery are found. Here you will see the symbol of the causse, angels' hair. Will you be able to identify the 45 species of orchids (there are 150 found in France) including the rare Aveyron Ophrys that can be admired but not picked? And what about the magnificent cardabelle golden thistle ?
In the north, on the Aubrac plateaux, the fields wake in spring after having spent several months under snow. Yellow carpets of crocuses and daffodils emerge. Then, the gentians appear that are much appreciated at aperitif time and the Aubrac tea that flavours infusions and liqueurs. Botanical lovers will be won over by more than 2000 plant species to see !
A multitude of wild species evolve in complete freedom in the immense woods. Go collecting mushrooms or blackberries and you will see the footprints of foxes, wild boar, deer and hares. Raise your head and perhaps you will glimpse the tail of a red squirrel. What is the impressive bellowing you can hear in early autumn? It’s the deer rutting.
Barn owls, tawny owls, falcons, buzzards or Griffon vultures are just some of the species of birds of prey amongst the 250 that are now found today in the Aveyron.
Along the river banks, herons live alongside coypus. Apparently, even beavers have reappeared on the banks of the river Tarn.
An accompanied visit to discover the village of Bozouls, built around the canyon: its history, its heritage, the formation of the canyon, its Romanesque church.
Below the Rocher du Diable on the road between Arvieu and Bonneviale. It is a humid area with a very rich (sphagnum, drosera, water clover, cotton grass...) and particularly rare flora. The council has implemented a course of educational and pastoral valuation to enable the curious discovering the value of that natural space.
At 2km from Sévérac-le-Château, the river Aveyron has its source. Enjoy the picnic tables and this shaded space to make a little stop!
Grenier de Monsieur Granièr de Monsenhor (around 1460) Attic of the bishop..
On the Puech de Flauzins, this tower provides spectacular views and the opportunity to observe sedentary and migratory species.
IMDERPLAM Institut Méditerranéen de Documentation, d'Enseignement et de Recherches sur les Plantes Médicinales
Knowledge of medicinal plants: botanical, cultural and touristic meetings to in the heart of the Dourdou valley and its rich and varied vegetation. Small botanical garden to be visited (free).
A family walk takes you on a discovery yourney of the local flora.
A must not to be missed the 'lava stream of Roquelaure'. Incorrectly named, because this actually is a mass of fallen basalt rocks stretched over the hills of Roquelaure, above the village of Saint- Côme-d'Olt and the Lot Valley.
Birth place of Jean-Henri FABRE. Visit: life and work of Jean-Henri FABRE, discover the setting of his childhood life. Displays: in the village, in the insect garden, along the botanical path. Itinerant exhibitions (under the microscope, history of a log, the world of butterflies).
On the road between Escandolières and Auzits, Minades (646m above sea level).
Relax here with the family on the banks of the Viaur between the villages of Bellecombe and La Roque, just south of La Salvetat Peyrales. Just beside the river Viaur, which separates the Aveyron from the Tarn, you'll find all you need here for a relaxing day in the sunshine- picnic tables, barbecues, covered seating area and toilets, all in a beautiful riverside setting. From here you can also follow walk no 9 of the Family Rambles to the chapel at Murat.
Whilst walking along a natural path, discover the Rauzes peat bog - a very specific and fragile ecosystem