The Grands Causses Regional Natural Park
From the Larzac plateau to the Causse Méjean, the Grands Causses Regional Natural Park contains four major Causses: Méjean, Noir, Larzac and Sauveterre.
These high limestone plateaus offer vast expanses of land interspersed with deep, steep-sided gorges and terraces.
Sharp contrasts in altitude and exposure enable more than 2,000 plant species to grow there, making the area a delight for botanists, especially in the spring.
Many raptors such as griffon and cinereous vultures, golden eagles and peregrine falcons are easy to spot throughout the year, as the Causses and gorges are their kingdom!
Dolomitic blockfields, chasms and sinkholes are among the fascinating geological curiosities that are sure to spark visitors’ imaginations.
Limestone is the one thing all these environments have in common, and the stone architecture makes splendid use of it, from small constructions once used for agropastoral activity (cazelle, jasse) to the park’s five imposing Templar and Hospitaller cities (La Couvertoirade, La Cavalerie, Sainte-Eulalie-de-Cernon, Le Viala-du-Pas-de-Jaux, St Jean d’Alcas).
Agropastoral activity has always taken place on these plateaus and still plays an important role in the department of Aveyron’s economy today, with many farmers producing milk for Roquefort, a cheese that is left to ripen in the famous Combalou cave in Roquefort-sur-Soulzon.
In order to ensure a high-quality tourist experience, the Grands Causses Park awards the “accueil du Parc naturel régional des grands causses” label, a national label owned by the French Ministry of the Environment, to service providers, producers and craftspeople who commit to upholding the shared values of the French regional natural parks.
To find out more about the park: www.parc-grands-causses.fr