The mysterious abandoned village of Clédat

Grandsaigne
The mysterious abando ...

Visiting the abandoned village of Clédat is possible free of charge, all year round! Clédat is a village, a small town, which is located in the heart of a forest (Larfeuil) in Grandsaigne. If signs lead you there, for years, it was abandoned and now lives again thanks to the fervor and the pugnacious work of a heritage preservation association. In the middle of a rocky chaos, in the heart of conifers and hundred-year-old trees, a chapel, cottages, fountains and miraculous springs and remains of dwellings are scattered. Is the soul of the inhabitants still present? What happened in the village of Clédat? You will find out by visiting it, on your own or on a guided tour in a small group, through the Association Renaissance des Vieilles Pierres.


Photos of the article @ Guide de la Corrèze


Abandoned village of Clédat Access panels
Abandoned village of Clédat in the middle of Monédières
Abandoned village of Clédat access road


A village, a history, a past

Between Ussel and Tulle, between the Massif des Monédières and the Regional Natural Park of the Plateau de Millevaches, there is the abandoned village of Clédat. It is a village that dates from the Middle Ages, in the 12th century there is a relay for travelers who make holy walks, pilgrims. You will also see a pretty Romanesque chapel there, dedicated to Sainte-Magdeleine. We are here in the high and isolated lands of the foothills of the central massif, the place is also a hospice. It is a parish until the 17th century because in addition to religious activities, the prosperous village, agriculture and livestock are going well.

It is with the scarcity of pilgrims, the development of other traffic routes that Clédat falls into disuse and a little into oblivion, although it remains busy. It is only during the Sainte-Magdeleine celebrations that visitors flock to enjoy the good waters of the miraculous fountain. In 1943, the place witnessed a brawl between the Germans and a group of 25 maquisards who had taken refuge below the village, some fled and others died there. In 1963, the village was empty, without running water or electricity, it was abandoned… Until 2001 when the Association Renaissance des Vieilles Pierres (fr) began the patient and marvelous renovation and restoration of this unique and so mysterious ensemble.


Abandoned village of Clédat
Abandoned village of Clédat statue
Abandoned village of Clédat fountain
Abandoned village of Clédat ruins of house

Visit the abandoned village of Clédat

The visit of the village of Clédat is possible all year round, it is in the open air, you can go around the buildings, walk there respectfully and take advantage of some educational panels to identify the different places. It is during the Festival of Roses and pastorals, on July 22 each year, that the village comes alive as in the old days, for the celebration of Saint Mary Magdeleine. Guided tours take place in the summer, organized by volunteers from the association. The rest of the year, if you have a small group formed, you can request it (just make a phone call).

With its old cottages, its rocky chaos (large stones and boulders scattered as if fallen from the sky in a disparate way), its venerable trees, the ruins of houses where the atmosphere of past lives still emerges... A curious, strange and palpable atmosphere reigns in Clédat. Beautiful stone sculptures by Michel Kirsch are present throughout the village. An exhibition on old agricultural tools will let you know why you shouldn't put the cart before the horse! Walk around the village to go to the spring which is said to be miraculous, pass in front of the vegetable garden.


Abandoned village of Clédat
Abandoned village of Clédat sculpture
Abandoned village of Clédat exhibition
Abandoned village of Clédat ruins
Abandoned village of Clédat
Abandoned village of Clédat chapel


Continue the visit with a hike, going why not to the panorama of the rock, which overlooks the Corrèze Valley. Boxes are placed near the car park with the hiking routes. The Renaissance Association of Old Stones has done everything to ensure that this "abandoned" place is nevertheless alive, accessible and that the visitor feels good there. Don't miss the discovery of this amazing village, like something out of a Hayao Miyazaki film!!

To continue the visits in this sector of Corrèze, we recommend that lovers of old stones go and see the chapel with your thatched roof in the village of Lestards. 8 kilometers away is the village of Chaumeil in the Monédières and its interesting Maison de Pays, which houses an exhibition and the Tourist Office. The Suc au May viewpoint is then only a few kilometers away and it is definitely worth a detour, especially if the weather conditions give you clear weather to appreciate the panorama of Cantal and the Puy de Dôme!


Abandoned village of Clédat
Abandoned village of Clédat
Abandoned village of Clédat agricultural exhibition
Abandoned village of Clédat hiking
Abandoned village of Clédat viewpoint

Did you enjoy this article? Find more on the Blog of the Corrèze Guide and organize your stay thanks to our Facebook page of the Corrèze Guide, we are also on Instagram Guide de la Corrèze.


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