The 10 Regional Nature Parks of the Massif Central present remarkable natural areas that you can easily discover with your family during walks and hikes thanks to the very many marked hiking trails that these territories have.
These preserved areas rich in living heritage can be found in various small regions, in the following Parks:
- Volcanoes of Auvergne
- Causses du Quercy
- Millevaches en Limousin
- Not to mention the Parc National des Cévennes
They are the gateway to discover the extraordinary biodiversity represented by a sometimes endemic flora and fauna. The diversity you will also find in the different types of reliefs including the emblematic Chaîne des Puys listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site with its 80 volcanoes, including the Puy de Dôme which culminates at 1465 meters.
In terms of heritage, the Massif Central has many remarkable sites like some of the most beautiful villages in France such as Rocamadour or Saint-Cirq-Lapopie in the Lot in which many gites and vacation rentals are offered.
Whatever region you are going to explore, the discovery of the Massif Central will inevitably pass through the local gastronomy and the tasting of the very many local products which counts many appellations of controlled origin.
First among the regional specialties are of course the famous cheeses, including:
- The Roquefort
- The Cantal
- The Saint Nectaire
- The Salers
- The Fourme d’Ambert
So you can make a great cheese platter that you can buy directly from local producers at farmers’ markets, to enjoy on the spot or with friends in the evening at your vacation rental.
As far as local recipes are concerned, you will not be able to resist the two must-try dishes made with cheeses from the Massif Central, which are Truffade with fresh tomme from the Cantal and the no less famous Aligot with fresh tomme from the Auvergne, which can be tasted in the Cantal, Lozère and Aveyron.
For meat and charcuterie enthusiasts, the very tasty meat from Salers, hams, sausages and a delicious and very hearty dish, the tripou accompanied by a local wine.