Lavigerie is the last village where you can reach the ridges of the Monts du Cantal. The narrow, winding road takes you to the foot of Puy Mary in summer and stops at the Col de Serre mountain pass in winter. With the harsh winter conditions preventing the roads from being kept open, you can put on your snowshoes and explore this white paradise as far as the glacial cirque of Eylac!
The village of Lavigerie offers great opportunities for hikes up to our most iconic peaks. Our top three favourites? Puy de Niermont, Les Fours de Peyre Arse and, of course, Puy Mary. In summer, you can set off from La Gravière, but in winter we recommend the snowshoe trails from the Col de Serre mountain pass.
Hikers on Peyre Arse
Burons? a word you may have already heard. Of course, it’s those little stone dwellings found in our mountains. Hard at work, Cantalien cattle farmers could spend up to six months living self-sufficiently in these cramped quarters, which served as living quarters, cheese-making areas and milking places. The commune of Lavigerie has many burons. Some of them can be seen from the road, whereas others are more secret and accessible to keen hikers!
Buron hut on the Col de Cabre mountain pass
These long-forgotten and deserted buildings have come back into fashion! However, they have often changed function. For those with a sweet tooth, the buron d’Eylac is the place to go for tasty bourriols (thick and soft galettes) or even pachade (traditional thick and crispy pancake), with blueberries, of course. Burons can also be used as shelters or gîtes when you stay in the region.
La Courbatière is a hamlet attached to the commune of Lavigerie. It is home to some fine manors. The house, known as Maison Saury, boasts a number of fine architectural features, including the entrance door with its sculpted lintel and this strange feature at the top. It is probably the signature of the mason who built the house. The entire house, comprising the main building, barn, sheepfold and pigsty with their interior fittings, is listed as a Historic Monument.
Manor in La Courbatière
This poet, the son of a cloth merchant, pursued brilliant studies at the Lycée Henri IV in Paris, where he frequented the literary cafés of the Latin Quarter. Together with the composer Joseph Canteloube, they managed to revive a number of Auvergne folk songs. He wrote regional literary columns for L’Auvergnat de Paris newspaper and the regional association La Veillée d'Auvergne. He was buried in the Lavigerie cemetery, where a plaque bears his last words: “My dear children, when I die, take me back to where all my loved ones died, up there on the mountain. I long for my humble church and the rural horizon where my race has followed the march of the seasons”.
Peaks of Puy Mary