Ségur-les-Villas is a charming village on the edge of the Monts du Cantal and Le Cézallier, with an exceptional natural and cultural heritage. Nestled in a lush green setting, this village is a perfect stop-off point for nature lovers. The site benefits from a privileged location on the banks of the Santoire river, giving it access to a varied environment, including Le Jolan and La Gazelle peat bogs, a Regional Nature Reserve, and the Frau de Vial, which is home to a host of flora and fauna.
In Cantal’s only Regional Nature Reserve, also recognised as a Espace Naturel Sensible (Sensitive natural area), you can visit Le Jolan and La Gazelle peat bogs. At an altitude of 1,130 metres, on the basalt plateaux of Le Cézallier, the Regional Nature Reserve boasts some remarkable flora and fauna. Surrounded by lush, rolling green meadows of mountain pastures, flowering meadows and large coniferous forests in the background, it is one of the most iconic sites in Auvergne.
Réserve Naturelle Régionale (Regional Nature Reserve) of Le Jolan
Ségur-les-Villas will not fail to surprise you with its cultural heritage: the Chapel of Notre Dame de Valentine, perched on a rocky pinnacle, is an isolated site offering an exceptional panorama overlooking the Santoire valley and the Limon plateau. A former lordly chapel belonging to the Valentines, it was a place of pilgrimage for families with children suffering from rickets, which was a common disease in Auvergne.
The hilltop chapel of Valentine
At the foot of the chapel in the hamlet of La Gazelle, a watermill with a lauze roof catches the eye.
The special feature of this mill is its horizontal paddle wheel fitted with a bolter machine. This mechanism was used to immediately refine the flour.
The mill can be visited on special days in the spring, in particular during the European Mills and Mill Heritage Days.
Watermill of La Gazelle
The Frau de Vial is an enchanting site; it is also known as the Frau de Collanges lake and can be reached by hiking. Here, you can relax and contemplate in an exceptional setting.
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