First mentioned in the year
806 in a charter of the abbey of Gelone, Lunas is situated on the confluence of three valleys,
by the banks of the Gravezon and up against the rockface of the Redondel which appears to offer
the town its protection. Its history is counted in millennia, a great many archaeological finds
having established that as long ago as 3OOO BC the region was already well populated.
Prehistoric caves of the Mas Colombier (5km) - Sacrifice-stone (5km into the forest) monolithic
stone partly incorporated in an oil-press. - Visigothic sarcophagi (5th/6th century) -
Chapelle St-Georges (5th/6th century) built on the site of a Gallo-Roman villa -
Medieval seigneural dovecotes - Renaissance house - Chapelle N.D. de Nize (3km)
with twelfth-century bell-tower - Romanesque church of Caunas (5km) dating from
11th/12th centuries - Parish church of Lunas (12th-15th centuries) - La Chapelle
St Amans (7km), summit of the Escandorgue (700m)
Prade leisure-camp: boating-pool, Pédalo, play-pool, cycle hire,
playground Further information from the Mairie: 04 67 23 81 42
Telephone: 04 67 23 69 33
34610 Saint-Geniès de Varensal
Le Bousquet dOrb is a village tucked away in the upper reaches of the Orb valley, overlooked by
the plateaux of the Escandorgue and the Monts dOrb. This wild and beautiful country offers
all facilities for a delightful break for those who come in search of peace and quiet or with a
spirit of adventure.
Well-shaded municipal park - Tennis - municipal sports stadium -
Footpaths for walkers - cycle-routes - trout-fishing, crayfish -
Shops - municipal camping site beside the river Orb
Further information from the Mairie: 04 67 23 80 39
Office du tourisme (July and August) 04 67 23 70 75
Overlooking the valley of the river Gravezon, the old vllage of
Joncels, a maze of narrow cobbled streets beneath antique
porticos, has practically not strayed beyond the original fortifications
behind which its houses were built. It contains the remains of an eighteenth-century
Benedictine abbey which was, in medieval times, one of the most
important in Languedoc and which served as a rest-stop for the pilgrims
on their way to St Jacques de Compostelle.
Two sites devoted to the spiritual and meditative life: - La Fleyssière
(Compagnons de la Communauté de lArche founded by Lanza del Vasto)
and La Dalmerie where the monks from the monastery of St Nicolas came to
complete the construction of their magnificent Eglise de la Dormition.
Superb countryside and remarkable megalithic sites criss-crossed
by well-marked footpaths. Further information from the Mairie: 04 67 23 80 60
Already in 1736, Avène-les-Bains was known for its mineral-spring Ste Odile, a therapeutic tonic also used for skin-problems. Today
it is a modern, well-equipped "thermal" resort with plenty of high-class accommodation available for visitors: a 3-star hotel, furnished
accommodation, gîtes and chambres dhôtes. It has all facilities required for a relaxing break: swimming-pool, tennis-courts, children's
playground, boulodrome as well as plenty of available excursions along well-tended routes for walkers, riders or cyclists.
Further information from the Mairie: 04 67 23 40 25
OFFICE DE TOURISME DES MONTS DORB ET DES SOURCES, 34260 AVENE - Telephone 04 67 23 43 38
The village of Roqueredonde takes its name from that of a "catellas" (old castle) situated
on the crest of the Escandorgue. Close also to the Cami Farrat, this protected location
provided a vantage-point from which its owners, the Abbés of Joncels, could control their
lands. Having a rude climate in winter, the sole economic mainstay of the region is sheep's
milk used in the production of Roquefort. Not naturally fertile, its richness lies in the splendour of its landscape,
its majestic views and many footpaths and streams that wend through the valleys and up over
the hill-crests. Its peaceful isolation is perhaps naturally conducive to the meditative spirit
for the area has long been a haunt of disciples of the Dalai Lama.
Further information from the Mairie: 04 67 44 09 81
If you are seeking calm, isolation and wild beauty, Romiguières, by the spring-waters
of the Orb, is the perfect spot. Romiguières, victim of rural depopulation,
has retained all the charm of a village of long ago. Along its footpaths once can
relish the forest flora (groves of chestnut and beech) and the silent, vigilant
observer will also be rewarded by a sight of its fauna (deer and mountain-goats).
Further information from the Mairie: 04 67 44 30 83
DIO AND VALQUIÈRES
On leaving Bousquet dOrb and following the
Col de Dio, one comes to the "ruffes rouges" against the white dolomite cliffs, the
three small hamlets that make up this commune: Dio, Valquières and Vernazoubres.
Beyond a series of canyons that recall the landscape of Arizona lies the Château
de Dio, a listed building of considerable historical interest and a veritable fortress
looming over the village, it dates from the 12th century but was owned during the 17th
century by the family of the Cardinal de Fleury. Valquières itself nestles around its
twelfth-century church, roofed in authentic lauze (distinctive local slate).
Walks and cycle-rides - Cultural events during the summer (concert and son et lumière at the
chateau) - Accommodation: gîtes, chambres and tables dhôtes.
Further information from the Mairie: 04 67 95 0 9 6 4 or 04 67 23 00 65
CEILHES AND ROCOZELS
Tucked away on the banks of the Orb which at this point, close to its source,
maintains the fierce, capricious current of a Mediterranean rapid, Ceilhes and Rocozels
are made in the image of the environment that surrounds them: a beauty that is striking
without hyperbole, tranquil yet very much alive. A rich historical heritage, still only
partially explored, can be glimpsed in the course of any walk round the village and its
environs. The romanesque church of St Jacques de Rocozels, twelfth-century church of St Jean
Baptiste (enlarged and fortified during the 14th century), ramparts, vaults, lintels,
the fountain of the Griffoul (18th century)...all await the curious visitor. Well-marked
walks and cycle-routes. Reservoir of the Bouloc: swimming and fishing.
Further information from the Mairie: 04 67 23 40 89