The small medieval town is a high tourist destination in Lozère, located in the south of the department, not far from Gard and Aveyron. Between Mont Aigoual and the Jonte gorges.
Located between the Causses and the Cévennes, the small town of Meyrueis, which has 823 inhabitants, is full of tourists during the summer period. In the streets, English, German and a host of other foreign languages mingle with French accents. Ideally located, at the foot of the Causse Méjean on one side, of Mont Aigoual on the other, and at the entrance to the Jonte gorges, the medieval town welcomes many nature lovers. But it does not only owe its interest to the landscapes that surround it.
A sweet life, to the rhythm of the sound of water
It is very pleasant to stroll through its alleys, have a drink in one of the many bars that line the Béthuzon (a tributary of the Jonte), or enjoy a plate of local charcuterie, followed by a trout of the Jonta. There is a sweetness about this village that makes you want to stroll along its quays all day long.
But for those who want to walk while they learn, Meyruei’s tourist office, located in the bell tower, a relic of the old ramparts, offers a guide with a numbered route for a heritage walk. The visit lasts around 1h30, to immerse you in the history of the village. In particular, this offers the opportunity to take a step into the religious past of Meyruei and discover the Saint-Pierre church as well as the Protestant temple registered since 2008 in the additional inventory of historical monuments; its commercial past with the Chapellerie Veyrier, the most important of the hat-making workshops which made the village’s fortunes for just over two centuries, from the 17th to the early 20th century; or experience the hall where the markets have been held since the year 1033!
A beautiful panorama of the castle rock
For the bravest, a slightly steep path leads from the heart of the village to the Rocher du château, where the Notre-Dame-du-Rocher chapel is located. This site offers a very beautiful panorama of Meyrueis. Many hiking trails also leave the village to go to Mont Aigoual or to Hyelzas in the town of Hures-la-Parade, where enthusiasts can taste sheep’s cheese at the Le Fédou cheese dairy.
Every Wednesday morning a market is set up around the village houses, by the river. Many local artisans offer cheese, charcuterie, honey and many other products. A smaller market takes place on Friday mornings.
Natures Cévennes offers half-day excursions in nature. From Meyrueis, an instructor takes you to the top of Mont Aigoual by car and then descends to the village. Departures are at 8.30 or 1.30 p.m. Mountain biking can also be practiced alone with a half-day or full-day rental.
Other activities, such as via ferrata or canyoning, are also offered. Reservations and information on 06 58 13 48 48 or 06 81 61 63 50.
It was built in the late 16th century and is 2.5 km from Meyrueis. It is accessible by car or via hiking trails. It cannot be visited, but picnic tables have been set up in the garden surrounding it. An opera festival is organized on 16, 18, 19 and 21 August.
Information and reservations: www.festivaldoperadugrandsud.fr or at the Meyruei tourist office.
Dargilan Cave is located in the town of Meyrueis, 15 minutes by car from the village. The Aven Armand Cave, pictured here, is located at Causse Méjean, 13 minutes away by car. The two places, which can be visited in 1h15 and 1h with a guide respectively, are really worth a detour.
Our Lady of the Rock
The chapel, which culminates 70 meters above sea level, is accessible on foot, along a 1.6km path from the village or by car. This is where the old castle Meyrueis was located, destroyed in 1632.
● Go there
Bus line 259, departing from Chapter or Foirail in Mende, provides access to Meyrueis every day, Monday to Friday. Two times are offered during the day: one in the morning and one in the afternoon for arrival in Meyrueis at 10.00 or 17.15. From Mende, the journey time is approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes. This bus also runs through Sainte-Énimie, Caussignac, La Parade, and Aven Armand.
The Meyruei tourist office, located on Place Sully in the bell tower, is open Monday to Friday from 9:30 to 12:00 and from 14:30 to 18:00 and Sunday from 9:30 to 12 in the afternoon. Information on 04 66 45 01 14