Many trails run through forests and fields on the Craponne plateau; on feet, on a bike, I just enjoy the nature here; walking in beech forest with changing light, whatever the season is always a pleasure, specially if some mushrooms wink from far. . . (picture 1). Early morning, the light can be so beautiful on the meadows with some mist or fog,...more
The isolated tiny villages (a few farms) have no church, but many have a little chapel. before the villages were deserted because of the industrial revolution these small villages were populated and the priest visited them regularly; nowadays, these chapels are still used for funerals or the local people pray there alone. Some of them are nicely...more
It looks like I insist on the beauty of the forest here, but really, it is a beautiful one; I spent some time in other forests, visited (and even lived in) rain forests, the famous Landes forest, etc. . this one here is just one which invites to go in and walk, look at the trees, the fruits, look at the colours of leaves, listen to the song of the...more
Meadows, scenic look outs, cattle, mushrooms, old wells in front of farms, villages with their church towers from far, I am never bored when I go around here, and I have the feeling I see something new every time I go out; I even found one day a sign indicating archaeological excavations, (well saw the sign only and a small fenced area).more
The train station in Craponne is not anymore working for goods or public transportation; like many stations of rural France in the 70ties and 80ties, the station has been closed by the French national railway company (SNCF) with the pretext of poor rentability. Local associations took over and maintain the station and train-fanatics are maintaining...more
Two fountains which were formerly troughs forpeople, horses and cattle can still be found in the middle of squares in Craponne ; the fontaine du For (picture 1) , from the 18th century and the fontaine du Bardon (picture 2) , from the 17th century. these were the real centres of the village where the markets were installed.Antiquities plunderers...more
Craponne is an old village but there are not a lot of historical buildings and there is not a big unity in architectural style.The only remain of a medieval castle is the donjon, located not far from the tourist office (picture 1) ; it has been built in the 12-13th century, but little is known about its history.The Marchedial tower (picture 2) is...more
The Saturday market is one of the main attractions of Craponne and even in winter, it is quite active; when you walk on the market in winter you understand the social role of these events, keeping people together in the area, everybody knows each other, news from the surrounding villages are exchanged, etc. Of course, food is the main thing on the...more
If you intend to go to Craponne for a few hours or days, the tourist office here is a very efficient and helpful one.They have lots of brochures to take away about homestays, hotels, campings in the area; as well they have lots of information about festivals in the surrounding villages, the interesting buildings, castles, churches to be visited and...more
I tell of beef, not beer, hahahaCheese, potatoes, now meat. You may have noticed that the area is green a almost unspoiled; on the fields and meadows is cattle which gives meat among the best of the world, specially if the farms are run according to biological agriculture.I tell here about cattle: the cows are from the race Salers (which originates...more
Guess what this is ? it is a “carcan”, a device where you tie the ox inside, put flat ropes under its belly and pull it up, so it cannot move to much, or escape ; once pulled up and blocked with the rack and pinion system, the blacksmith can begin to work and fit new shoes to the ox. This device existed in all villages and some are still there even...more
Around the 15th of August you can enjoy the kermes in Craponne. lots of amusement rides are installed in the village and many people enjoy! If the weather is fine, it is fun to stay there late at night and the kids of course never think of going home. . . It is not my thing but the kids like it. . . . This kermes lasts for one week and if you...more
A Parc Naturel Regional (PNR) is a public establishment (institution) created in cooperation between local collectivities (cities, villages, departement, etc. . ) in order to protect and economically develop (sustainable) a remarkable rural territory. It works like a joint union where the Auvergne region, Puy de Dome and Haute Loire departements, and 180 towns or villages participate.
This parc which has been created in 1986 covers 3130 km² and has a population of around 110000 inhabitants.
The following website contains lots of information about activities, unfortunately, despite the mark on top of page, it is not in English
This other one, is an English version of the French Auvergne-Tourisme site.
Fondest memory: Not really fondest memeory, I like all here!