Romanesques churches - 80km
Discover in this 80 km circuit the many Romanesque churches of the Pays de Salers! Depart from the Saint-Thyrse church in Anglards-de-Salers to reach the Benedictine abbey of Brageac.
This church dedicated to Saint Thyrse is Romanesque. Just three chapels and a sacristy were added during the 15th and 16th centuries so that’s why the church looks like a latin cross. The entry is on the west with a beautiful porch. A median nave is sustained by a vault. The apse is worth the trip...
• Follow the direction of Salers on the road D22 and join Fontanges (road D35) and then follow the direction Saint-Projet-de-Salers via the D35 and then the D42.
The church of Saint-Projet-de-Salers dates from the 18th century. It was supposedly built by the Tournemire family on a site named the "Affar de villa Souteyra". A Romanesque-style steeple surmounts a front aspect carved with neo-classical sculptures from 1776. The general architecture here is reminiscent of the Romanesque period despite some details to the contrary.
• Drive to Saint-Chamant via the road D42 and then follow the direction Aurillac (road D922) until the junction on your left towards Saint Cernin.
Closed in by houses, the church of Saint Cernin is a rough lava construction with a simple nave embellished with a meridional porch and a Romanesque steeple. The main interest consists in a series of sculptures among the most beautiful in Upper Auvergne where the designs depict detailed and varied beasts (horses, boars, owls, monkeys...).
• Join Saint-Illide via the road D43.
The church of Saint-Illide is a monument with a Romanesque origin from the 12th century. During the 19th century, the increase of the population called for a bigger church so the original building was modified following the fashion of the Aurillac one.
• Go to Saint-Christophe-les-Gorges via Saint- Martin-Cantalès (road D6) and then go to Ally crossing the hamlets of Le Raynal and Fraissy.
The Clovis’ Chaster mentioned in Ally is a church originally dedicated to St Vincent of Salers but devoted to Saint Ferrerol in 1535. This is evidence of a tumultuous history punctuated with pillagings, epidemics and wars which resulted in the architecture of the rural churches in the Upper Auvergne suffering various extensions and rebuildings. The church of Ally is a striking example of this.
• Join Brageac on the road D137.
Benedictin nuns created this abbey in 1100; built on the site of an ancient hermitage of St Till or Théau (659). Well situated above the gorge of the Auze River, the church has a nave with three ribs. Among the capitols, we note a fight between two stags.
• Walk to the remains of the hermitage (45mn return). The magical atmosphere is worth the trip...
All year round