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Sauxillanges travel guide

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Visit Sauxillanges (Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, France)

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Sauxillanges is in the Puy de Dome department of the Auvergne region of France, on the western edge of the Livradois-Forez natural park and close to Usson which is one of the "most beautiful villages of France".

Explore Sauxillanges

Seen from the air or on the map from the tourist office it is clear that Sauxillanges is dominated by a large monastery. Sadly this is private and really from the outside you can see very little of it. This means that Sauxillanges whilst pleasant enough, is lacking a highlight.

Street of ancient houses in Sauxillanges

As well as the monastery there is an attractive small chateau on the edge of town opposite Sauxillanges tourist office but this too is private.

The church of Notre Dame de l'Assomption suffered some damage during the revolution, notably to its bell-tower. This was rebuilt in the 19th century. The church houses some interesting gilded statues which tell the story of Saint Crepin and Saint Crepinien. There are also some 19th century stained glass windows tell the story of the development of Sauxillanges.

Opposite the church on the other side of the road there is a viewpoint over some pretty gardens and towards Ussson in the distance.

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History of Sauxillanges Abbey

The monastery grew up when twelve monks from the Abbey of Cluny came to Sauxillanges. They built a large church dedicated to Saint Peter and Saint Paul. For the villagers they built the church of Notre Dame de l'Assomption. New buildings were added and an important monastery came into being. In the 12th century fortifications were added and Sauxillanges escaped the destruction of the Hundred Years War.

The monastery and surrounding village continued to prosper into the 16th century but then the monastery went into decline. By the time of the Revolution only a dozen monks remained and the buildings were suffering. In 1792 the monastery was sold and the church bells melted down. The church was destroyed and many buildings looted. What was left is now in private ownership.

Abbey building in Sauxillanges

Places to Visit nearby

The "most beautiful villages" of Usson and Montpeyroux are both just a few kilometers from Sauxillanges and have interesting medieval centres to explore.

Sauxillanges is in the Livradois-Forez natural park which has some beautiful countryside. One way of exploring the park is to follow a circular route visiting various villages which have been highlighted as being of particular interest. These are Billom, Thiers, Chateldon, Courpiere, Olliergues, Ambert, Viverols, La Chaise-Dieu and Allegre.

You can find more travel ideas in the Puy-de-Dome guide and the Auvergne guide.

See also: 

Photos of Sauxillanges

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  • abbey
  • arches
  • centre
  • church
  • old-houses
  • statues
  • town-centre

Map of Sauxillanges and places nearby

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Visit near Sauxillanges with France This Way reviews

Usson

Usson

One of the least developed of the 'most beautiful villages in France' (a good thing!) the quaint centre of Usson is overlooked by a large statue of the Virgin Mary

Usson guide
Issoire

Issoire

Best known for its romanesque church, Issoire is a very pleasant and unspoiled town to explore

Issoire guide
Montpeyroux

Montpeyroux

Montpeyroux is a small village now listed among the 'most beautiful in France' and very pleasant to explore

Montpeyroux guide
Auzon

Auzon

The cobbled streets of Auzon wind up the hill from the river, passing an imposing church and medieval houses

Auzon guide
Billom

Billom

It is the half-timbered houses and medieval gateways that provide the charm in the centre of Billom

Billom guide
Saint-Floret

Saint-Floret

The tiny village of Saint-Floret with its ruined castle and frescoes is now listed among the 'most beautiful in France'

Saint-Floret guide

... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Puy-de-Dome

Address: Sauxillanges, Issoire, Auvergne, 63490, France || GPS coordinates: latitude 45.551944, longitude 3.372222

Plan your visit to Sauxillanges, Puy-de-Dome

Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby

  • Usson: most beautiful village (4 km)
  • Eglise de Saint Austremoine d'Issoire (Issoire): religious monument (10 km)
  • Jardins du château d'Hauterive: remarkable garden (10 km)
  • Issoire: recommended detour (10 km)
  • Eglise de Notre Dame de Mailhat (Lamontgie): religious monument (12 km)
  • Montpeyroux: most beautiful village (15 km)
  • Villeneuve-Lembron Chateau: national monument (17 km)
  • Livradois-Forez: regional natural parc (19 km)
  • Bois Noirs: site of natural beauty (21 km)
  • Saint-Saturnin: most beautiful village (25 km)
  • Eglise Notre Dame (Saint-Saturnin): religious monument (25 km)
  • Aulteribe Chateau: national monument (27 km)

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

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