Saulges travel guide

Photo of Saulges

Visit Saulges (Pays de la Loire, France)

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Saulges is a small village situated in the south of the Mayenne department (region Pays-de-la-Loire) between Laval and Le Mans. The village is listed as a 'little city of character' and also has been awarded 3* as a 'town in bloom'.

Exploring Saulges

Saulges itself has a few sights of interest, including a sturdy 19th century limekiln, a traditional washhouse and two historic churches which are the highlight of your visit.

The Church of Saint-Pierre in the centre of the village dates in part from the 8th century, making it one of the oldest churches in the region. Access to the older church is through a 16th century chapel and really is not to be missed.

church of Saint Pierre in Saulges

Inside the lovely interior are lots of painted statues of saints traditionally venerated during pilgrimages. There is a painted statue of Saint-Cenere and a decorative box containing the relics of the saint and a painted altarpiece.

Inside the 16th century chapel there is a fine wall painting dating from soon after the chapel was built but only rediscovered in 1960 and restored in 2011.

The Church of Notre-Dame dates from the 11th century, is in the roman style and well known for its ancient altarpeices. It is also noteworthy for its large bell tower. Inside there is a 15th century statue of the Holy Trinity and a statue of Saint Louis.


The oratory of Saint-Cénéré can be visited in a quiet location on the Erve riverjust outside Saulges. The building we see today dates from the 19th century, but the location has attracted followers of the Saint since the 7th century, and even today locals visit the site each 21st July, the anniversary of the death of Saint Cénéré in 680.

Saint Cénéré arrived with his brother Cénéri in Saulges in 649. He is reputed to have caused a miraculous spring to appear near to the Evre river in the place where the oratory was built in his honour. His brother Ceneri settled in the village of Saint-Cénéri-le-Gerei, named after him for the miracles he is said to have inspired. Saint-Cénéri-le-Gerei is a "most beautiful village of France".

church of Notre-Dame in Saulges

Saulges caves

Most visitors are attracted here by the Saulges Caves, a group of numerous related cave systems some of which were inhabited in prehistoric times and have decorated walls from that era.

Two of these are now accessible by the public, the Grotte de Rochefort and the Grotte à Margot, with access in a very picturesque setting on the riverside in the 'Canyon de Saulges' (there is a short marked trail that introduces some of the most interesting characteristics of the region).

Attractions nearby

There are various places of interest to visit nearby, with our favourites including Sainte-Suzanne a few kilometres north of Saulges and the medieval heart of Le Mans to the east of the village. We were also struck by the picture-postcard charm of the nearby village of Asnieres sur Vegre whose church has some impressive frescoes.

You can find more travel ideas in the Mayenne guide and the Pays de la Loire guide.

See also: 

Photos of Saulges

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The medieval village and the castle in the pretty village of Sainte-Suzanne still retain much of the original town fortified walls

Sainte-Suzanne guide


Solesmes is known for its Abbey Saint-Pierre, an important benedictine abbey that has helped introduce gregorian chant to the world

Solesmes guide


The small town of Asnières-sur-Vègre is especially picturesque in the area around the bridge and river

Asnieres-sur-Vegre guide


The highlight here at Evron is the Abbey of Notre Dame, in particular the very ancient abbey church

Evron guide


Parcé sur Sarthe is a classified petites cites de caractere and has an attractive 15-16th century centre.

Parcé-sur-Sarthe guide


The castle, the river and the historic centre make the substantial town of Laval very interesting to visit

Laval guide

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

Tourist classifications for Saulges

Saulges is classified as a listed town of Art and History

Address: Saulges, Meslay-du-Maine, Laval, Pays de la Loire, 53340, France || GPS coordinates: latitude 47.983333, longitude -0.404444

Plan your visit to Saulges, Mayenne

Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby

  • La Cropte: ville fleurie 4* (7 km)
  • Sainte-Suzanne: most beautiful village (13 km)
  • Evron: town of art and history (19 km)
  • Jardins de la Massonnière: remarkable garden (20 km)
  • Jardins du Mirail: remarkable garden (26 km)
  • Coudray: ville fleurie 4* (28 km)
  • Chateau-Gontier: recommended detour (28 km)
  • Laval: town of art and history (29 km)
  • Jublains: town of art and history (31 km)
  • Jardin du château de Vilaines: remarkable garden (34 km)
  • Chenille-Change: ville fleurie 4* (37 km)
  • Mayenne: town of art and history (40 km)

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