The Way of St James - Le Puy to Aumont
Traverse the centuries of time and the borders of Europe on the medieval pilgrim trail of Compostela. In the 9th century, the tomb of the apostle St James was unearthed in Compostela. The site became the focus of a pilgrim trail beginning in France, and crossing northern Spain to Santiago de Compostela. This journey, along the Via Podiensis, the French Way of St James, takes pilgrims from Le Puy en Velay to the Pyrenees at St Jean Pied de Port. The route passes a multitude of churches and monasteries, resembling a travelling museum of Romanesque art. Seven stages of this historic trail are included in our self-guided walking program in France. This section begins in the centre of France, on the Central Massif at Le Puy-en Velay where many trails from across Europe converged enroute to the tomb of St James in Spain. The trail ascends the volcanic highlands of Margeride in the Haute Loire before continuing through the traditional granite villages of the Lozere. The presence of stone chapels and the unique crosses are symbolic of the pilgrimage and a continual reminder of the religious significance of the trail, whilst the pretty villages, rolling countryside and strong gastronomic traditions make this one of the best short walks in France.
|DAY 1||Arrive Le Puy-en-Velay|
|DAY 2||Walk to St-Privat-d'Allier (5-6hrs)|
|DAY 3||Descend the gorges of Allier to Saugues (4-5hrs)|
|DAY 4||Walk across the Margeride plateau to St Alban (Les Faux or Le Rouget) (7hrs)|
|DAY 5||Descend into the Truyère valley and end trip at Aumont-Aubrac (5-6hrs) or continue to Conques|
Le Puy to St Chely was a memorable walk organised by UTracks. The accommodation was a mix of hotels & farm stays, all were fresh & clean, with friendly welcoming staff or hosts. Meals were amazing 3-4 courses each night & buffet breakfasts most mornings. The scenery is just amazing, spring flowers were everywhere. The tracks were well signposted & in pretty good state, especially considering our walk commenced after a lot of rain of which we were very lucky to have missed.