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lauzerte, the village that sets on a hill cannot be hidden

Les plus beau villages en France.  It is a distinction given to 155 small towns in rural France.  Lauzerte is one of those les plus beau villages.  It is the next stop on the Way to Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port at the foot of the Pyrénées.

Lauzerte comes from “lauzes”: flat stones used as paving or roofing + “erta”:  hill, thus Hill of Stones.

As with many of the small villages in France, it has a long history going back to the Middle Ages; it was founded in the 13th century.  Several buildings from that period still exist.  One, an hospice now, provides a home for several pensioners.

DAY 20 de Lascabanes à Lauzerte (peut-être 23 km) sur Le Chemin de Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle.

On the way to Lauzerte from Lascabanes one will pass other villages.  Montcuq has several conveniences, including restaurants; it is the mid-point on the journey between Le Puy-en-Velay, where I began, and Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port, which is at the border between France and Spain and where I stop.

The Chemin de St. Jacques is a pilgrimage route that leads eventually to the Catedral de Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, Spain.  Along the way many small churches, sanctuaries, were built for prayer and for refuge.  They appear along the Way at unexpected times.  Each one a pleasant surprise.  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail.)

I am walking toward Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port in the fall, September and October.  The mornings are darker each day.  More clouds can be seen when I start, but they tend to shift and disperse in the afternoon.  If I am lucky, the sun bursts between the gaps in the clouds during the morning and lights the way.  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail.)

Like some of the previous days, the path opens up and one walks through farming country, between plots of land, on paths for tractors and terrain vehicles.  Sunflowers are are common here, grown for their seeds.  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail.)

20131011_026_Chemin St Jacques

From the hill where Lauzerte sits, one has a commanding view of the patchwork of surrounding farms.  It is the sort of country side one walks before arriving in Lauzerte.(Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail.)

Finally, Lauzerte(Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail.)

I slept well in the gîte Les Figuiers in Lauzerte.

4 Comments Post a comment
  1. hungryko #

    Yay! Love the dramatic sky shots. Oh the colors.

    • Merci bien. Sometimes those mornings were sooo gray and other times . . . !

  2. Jim O'Connell #

    Your photos are wonderful Michael! The hike looks like a very enjoyable walk! Wanted to let you know we are having a retirement party for Craig Meyers May 29th from 4-7 pm at his house. There will be beer, wine, food, and cake. He requested no gifts, but does want stories…you are very good at that!!! I didn’t know if you would be back stateside by then, but wanted to pass along the invitation:-)

    • Thanks again. I am back in the states and I would love to come by and tell some stories.


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