Clermont l'Hèrault
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Clermont l'Hérault - home of olive oil and grapes

St Paul Church

St Paul: rosetta

First mentioned in the year 1140. Since then the market has been a fixture, and was actually the very beginning of the town. In the year 1158 a castle was built and soon the town became a fortress. The religious wars were a very turbulent period and one century later the town was badly affected by the plague.  A memorial plaque can be seen in St. Paul’s Church.  

From the 17th century Clermont turned toward textile manufacture and later to the wine trade. Since 1457 the town was named  «Clermont-Lodève», but during the French Revolution the inhabitants wanted to get rid of  this name, because it represented  too strong an influence from the neighbouring town of Lodéve. That was when the name of the recently created administrative district (département) was added and from then on it became known as «Clermont l'Hérault».

The church of St. Paul is one of the gothic buildings in the Lanquedoc with many different styles. This building was started in 1313, the tower is 25m high with  remarkable gargoyles on the facade. The nave is separated from the side aisle by hexagonal columns. On one is a  painting of the holy family by the artist Jean Coustou done in the 17th century.

When strolling down Coutellierie road you come across the olive oil mill where wonderful olive oil is squeezed and sold. The old oil presses can be visited in a museum. Today the oil mills are driven by electric motors.  

The grape season starts in summer. More than  25.000 tons of grapes of the varieties «Servant, Chasselas or Muscat» are produced on 4.000 hectare of agricultural land. Try these delicious grapes here, in their place of origin and put real sunshine on your table!! With the fantastic regional cheese, a glas of well chilled wine and some  french bread it is easy to understand the attractions of the way of life in southern France!
Street in Clermont Chateau of Clermont   Marketday in Clermont

 

Infos

Places of interest

Historic town (6.500 inhabitants)
Medieval  castle, 10th century.
Battlement, 11th and 12th century.
Gothic St. Paul Church,13th century.
Dominican Abbey, 1325
Church «Notre Dame du Peyrou» (12th century.)
Chapelle «Notre Dame de Gorjan» (16th  century.)
City gates,  steep historic alleys, archways and facades of the 16th - 18th century.. 
Museum of religious figurines «Santons du Monde»
Chateau of Clermont

Around Salagou-Lake  - a laid-back paradise 

Celles

On a rock spur,an abandoned ruined village offering views across the lake,:  this village in ruins whichThe village was originally supposed to have been flooded by the reservoir and is worth a half - day trip and is a good base for all sorts of tours around the lake. 

Octon

An inviting little village with an appealing program for visitors in summer. Excellent wines, which are produced around Lake Salagou, are available here. 

Salasc

Charming village of 200 inhabitants, built around a well spring. Many locals get their daily drinking water from the village fountain because this water is of excellent quality. Communal oven, 17th century, church , 12th century. Delightful small market  on Sunday morning, during  the summer season.

Mourèze

A village hiding between extraordinary and alluring dolomite rock formations. The rock formations  allow unique walking tours: The “Cirque dolomitique” gives access to Pic St. Jean (panorama),a church,and a 10th century castle. The brilliant white of the dolomite rock and the contrasts in colour of the plants, sky and mediterranean landscape is always surprising.The dolomite formations were also used by prehistoric man and you can visit a reconstruction of their lives in the “Cirque”

Villeneuvette

Created as a Royal Textile manufacturing factory.founded by a factory owner from Clermont l'Hérault.This manufacturing experienced a rapid boom. In 1677 they receive financial help from Colbert, the financer of Ludwig XIV. This worker community soon had 800 members,300 of whom lived in their own settlement at Villeneuvette. Each weaver with his family was accomodated here. Antiquated equipment and competitors from the north and east of France finally led to the end of the industry. In 1954 the business was shut down. Today Villeneuvette is a green oasis. On the village square «Place Louis XIV» is a fountain, spring fed from the bridge «pont de l'amour».There is a spectacular avenue of sycamore trees and a gate at the village entrance leads to the paved village roads. This charming village is well worth a visit. Entrance is free and there are guided tours on Saturdays and Sundays at 10.30 a.m. (in French!)

Liausson

Liausson is separated from Mourèze by the mountain of Pic St. Jean which offers magnificent views of Lake Salagou.

Lacoste

North of Clermont, with views over the Hérault and Lergue valleys. You will find a church, castle and the old Abbey of Cornil. Walk on a  Roman street and over a Roman bridge.

Mérifons

12thC church and the ruin of the castle of Malavieille. Nearby at La Lieude are spectacular fossil footprints of ancient dinosaurs in there exact original positions, showing how they roamed the area in ancient geological time.

Le Bosc

Uranium mine and Uranium factory

Lodève

Under –prefecture of 7.700 inhabitants.  St.-Fulcran cathedral of 10th - 13th century, Town Hall, Museum  «Hôtel de Fleury» in an old noble’s house and tapestry manufacture. Lodève today is a lively town with many shops , a big weekly market  (Saturday morning) and a farmers market with regional products. (Tuesday evening between 15th June and 15th September) There is a strong arts culture with many crafts, arts galleries, second hand bookshops, and antique shops in the town,making it very lively.

Panorama of Clermont

Celles - Lac du Salagou

Cirque de Mourèze

Mourèze

Celles - Lac du Salagou - Ruined house

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