Celia's blog

Musings on life in Lodeve, Languedoc

A visit to Lacoste

Posted by celiahukins on 05/03/2012

Sitting in the warmth in the Le Minuscule having a green tea I happened to read in MidiLibre that a tour of Lacoste was being organised for the Saturday afternoon. Lacoste is the hilltop village you see when you’re driving back from Clermont after a trip to the Wednesday market. If you’ve come from further afield, it’s a reminder that you’re nearly home. I was intrigued to see what it was really like, so I contacted a friend and we decided to go.

Of course I had to go to the market on Saturday morning first. The weather was warm and I got out a lighter jacket. In fact it was still cool in the shade there although it had been hot up at our house in the sun. Now that the days were getting warmer, memories of the intense cold we had suffered soon faded, although there was still little sign of growth in the garden. At the market it did feel slightly springlike. I bought some pasta from the pasta lady – she stuffs ravioli with local cheese or ham – and endives with ham in béchamel sauce (a good French dish) from the traiteur. Then it was back for a quick lunch outside (don’t fall asleep in the sun; I set my alarm clock) before setting off for Lacoste.

We took the easy road to Lacoste via the outskirts of Clermont. We met in the Place du Village, about 70 of us, mostly French, all wearing with strong walking shoes, some carrying poles. We worried that this might be a difficult walk and we weren’t suitably dressed – but in fact it was just a stroll round the village as we had expected. The leaders were interesting and enthusiastic as they had had involvement in the extensive restoration work.

We walked round the ramparts and then went on to the church of John the Baptist and then to the splendid crucifix, 5 metres high, which was built at the beginning of the 20th century and restored in 2004. Sadly their Powerpoint presentation didn’t work, but we didn’t really need it anyway.

From the village there are views over the plain to Gignac. The best way to approach Lacoste is from the Clermont side where the slope is gentle, as we did; on the way back you can take the steeper route which winds down the hill.

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