Cardaillac travel guide

Photo of Cardaillac

Visit Cardaillac (Occitanie, France)

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Cardaillac is a picturesque village in an imposing position on a raised ridge to the north-west of Figeac and listed as one of the 'most beautiful villages of France'.

Exploring Cardaillac

As you enter Cardaillac pay attention to the sign (French only) that tells you to ignore the urge to walk straight into the village centre! Instead take the steep track to your right that turns into a path underneath the cliff on which the village is built, and useful to see why this naturally defensive position was chosen for the village.

The village is divided into three parts: the original village that developed in and around the medieval fort; the area around the church; and the region around Place Marcadiol and the medieval garden.

While all the parts of Cardaillac are interesting and deserve to be explored, it is the part around the fort that contains the most buildings of interest.

Fort tower in Cardaillac historic village

You enter Cardaillac from below the village and discover a medieval centre that includes several stone towers, a myriad of picturesque houses (some of them half-timbered) and the Chapel of Saint Thomas.

It is possible to ascend the Tour de Sagnes for views across the rooftops and valley. This square tower was once part of a 13th century fortress, as was the nearby Tour de l'Horloge.

You can also see the well that was once the main water supply for the village and fort in Place Manganel.

After leaving the fort, elsewhere in Cardaillac you should also visit the small medieval garden with a pleasant picnic area and the cluster of houses around Place Marcadiol.


Note: when you are leaving the village be sure to first follow the road below the village that looks back at the fort from the other side of the valley and has the best view of Cardaillac and its clifftop position.

There is a weekly market in Cardaillac each Sunday morning.

Museum Eclaté

Also in Cardaillac you can visit one of the most important museums in the Figeac region. Called the Musée Eclaté, it is situated in the Place de la Tour (there is no tower here now, but apparently there used to be).

The museum brings together many items from everyday life in the region and presents them in separate rooms, recreated in their original settings such as a school room, a carpentry shop and an oil mill.

quiet corner in centre of Cardaillac

Attractions nearby

Among the many notable sights and scenic highlights in the region around Cardaillac, be sure to visit the historic centre of Figeac

Other local attractions include the roman style church and village at nearby Saint-Perdoux, the renaissance castle at Chateau d'Assier, and the small village at Capdenac, another of the 'most beautiful villages of France' and just a few kilometres to the south.

Explore elsewhere in the Massif Central. You can find more travel ideas in the Lot guide and the Midi-Pyrenees guide.

See also: 

Photos of Cardaillac

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  • cardaillac-street
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  • fort
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  • medieval-garden
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  • round-tower
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  • stone-carving
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  • well-in-village

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The castle, medieval gateway and market hall are among the highlights in Lacapelle-Marival

Lacapelle-Marival guide


The market town of Figeac has many interesting historic buildings and streets to explore - one of our favourite towns in this region

Figeac guide


Capdenac-le-Haut, another of the 'beautiful villages of France' is quite small but very picturesque

Capdenac guide


Although quite small, take the time to stroll around Faycelles when you are in this region

Faycelles guide


In Maurs you can see the Abbey Church of Saint-Cesaire and half-timbered houses in the medieval town centre

Maurs guide


Some of the highlights in Saint-Cere are rather hidden away, so take time to explore the back streets of this medieval town

Saint-Cere guide

... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Lot

Address: Cardaillac, Lacapelle-Marival, Figeac, Midi-Pyrenees, 46100, France || GPS coordinates: latitude 44.680833, longitude 1.997778

Plan your visit to Cardaillac, Lot

Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby

The French version of this page is at Cardaillac (Francais)