Visit Salers (Auvergne, France)
Salers dates its origins from almost 1000 years ago, but it was during the boom years of the 15th century that much of the current town was constructed. Salers describes itself as 'a black diamond on a green carpet', a quite appropriate description, because of the dark grey volcanic stone used for many of the buildings in the town.
Salers has a surprising amount of places of interest for such a small village, which is due to its role as a local administrative centre in the 16th century. Start your visit in the central square in the village center.
Perhaps even more than some of the other 'most beautiful villages in France', Salers really can cast you back in time as you wander around, with the central square especially being unspoiled by the ravages of time.
Around the central square in Salers there are magnificent and ornate renaissance style houses from the 16th century, the time when the town was at its peak, with luxurious architectural detail in the carved lintel doorways and mullioned windows, and the traditional slate rooves, with their attractive little chimneys.
The most important buildings here that dominate Grand Place are the Town Hall and the Maison Baillage, both built in the local dark lava stone and featuring decorative towers. See also the Maison de la Ronade, and the Maison des Templiers which is now a small museum of local arts and traditions.
Near the Grand Place is a 16th century church, entered by an earlier roman style porch. Inside the church there are several renowned 17th century Aubusson rugs and a 15th century mise au tombeau sculpture.
The town was originally surrounded by 15th century ramparts, with two of the original gateways (the Porte du beffroi and the Porte de la Martille) through the defences still visible.
You should be aware that parking is below Salers village itself, and there is a small climb to reach the village - nothing too serious though.
Note: there is also a race of cows called after 'Salers', which you are likely to see in the region, and a version of Cantal cheese (well known across France) called Salers - one of five AOC cheeses in the Auvergne region. These were originally bred by Tyssandier d'Escous, whose statue you can see in Salers.
It is undoubtedly Salers position in the mountains that helps attract so many visitors - 400,000 each year - and provides many of the activities in the region. The region around the village is very beautiful, and ideal for a wide range of outdoor activities.
In particular you should also visit the village of Tournemire, another 'most beautiful village of France' and just a few kilometres from Salers.
Photos taken within 10 km
Tourist classifications for Salers
Salers is classified as a one of the most beautiful village in France (plus beau villages)
Address: Salers, Mauriac, Cantal, Auvergne, 15140 || GPS: latitude 45.138, longitude 2.4957
Map of Salers & places nearby
Highlights close by
Suggested tourist attractions to visit near Salers, France
- Verger de Déduit - remarkable garden (9km)
- Tournemire - most beautiful village (9km)
- Salins - town of art and history (10km)
- Puy Mary - grand site of france (15km)
- Puy Griou - site of natural beauty (18km)
- Riom-es-Montagnes - recommended detour (21km)
- Plomb du Cantal - site of natural beauty (23km)
- Parc-arboretum de Neuvic d'Ussel - remarkable garden (32km)
- Volcans d'Auvergne - regional natural parc (36km)
- Lac Pavin - site of natural beauty (50km)
The French version of this page is at Salers (Francais)