Known as one of France's hidden treasures, the volcanic land of the Auvergne is in the very heart of France and perhaps best known for supplying many varieties of mineral water.
This region of spectacular hills, mountains and forests is ideal for outdoor pursuits with some of the best walking and cycling country in France, along with many watersports on the numerous lakes and rivers.
You will also find some of the most magnificent medieval castles and Romanesque churches to visit here, or if you are simply looking to relax there are as many as 10 spa resorts offering a variety of treatments to soothe away any niggling aches and pains.
During the summer months local villages come alive with colourful festivals where flowers adorn the streets and houses and the main activity is folk dancing.
Places to visit in Auvergne
Auvergne's capital city where the pace of life is a little quicker has an old quarter, lively pavement bars, good shops and restaurants.
This small Renaissance town is noted for its beautiful black basalt houses with their turrets (bartizans) and spiral staircases.
Centre of gastronomy and famous worldwide for its thermal spa and luxurious mansions and villas along the Allier river.
Vulcania theme park
A great family outing where the story of Auvergne's extinct volcanoes is illustrated through high tech media including 3D cinema.
Things to do in Auvergne
Le Puy Mary
Drive up the hair-pin mountain roads to the Puy Mary for a breathtaking, panoramic view over 10 valleys on a clear day.
Take to the sky
Enjoy a trip over the volcanoes in a hot air balloon for an exhilarating and memorable journey. And for the more adventurous there is
also the option of paragliding or hang-gliding.
The Allier gorges
Discover the beautiful protected countryside and amazing views via a scenic train trip.