Comminges: top 10 visits not to be missed

Saint-Gaudens
Comminges: top 10 vis ...

If you dream of escape and wide open spaces, go to Comminges, a natural and historical region located in the south of Haute-Garonne, which extends from the Coteaux de la Garonne to the Spanish border. Bordered by Ariège and the Hautes-Pyrénées, it offers a mosaic of incredible and green landscapes, between pastures, hills, valleys and mountains. Take a breath of fresh air in Comminges, and follow us in the top 10 visits not to be missed during your visit.

Opening photo: Saint-Bertand-de-Comminges Photo by Guillaume / Adobestock

1 Visit Saint-Bertrand-de-Comminges


We begin our escapade with a charming village nicknamed Mont-Saint-Michel of the Pyrenees. Roman city of Lugdunum founded 2000 years ago, Saint-Bertrand-de-Comminges is suspended between plains and mountains. Climb along pretty steep streets to discover the ruins of this ancient site which reveals the forum, the theater, the thermal baths and the portico square. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the magnificent Sainte-Marie Cathedral is worth a visit. An exceptional organ, fine decor and a beautiful Romanesque church are to be admired during your trip to Saint-Bertrand-de-Comminges.

Read our fact sheet on Saint-Bertrand-de-Comminges

Saint-Bertrand-de-Comminges Photo by: mike workman / Adobestock
Saint-Bertrand-de-Comminges Photo by: mike workman / Adobestock


2 Discover Saint-Gaudens

We go back a few kilometers to the north, 30 minutes from Lannemezan, to visit the pretty town of Saint-Gaudens which has some lovely surprises in store. At the foot of the Pyrenees, it offers an ideal setting for walks and bike rides which can end on the terrace of a café or in the gourmet halls for lunch. Museum, theater, exhibition hall and contemporary art center, Saint-Gaudens is a cultural city that preserves beautiful architecture. Take the ocher path or the green path to discover its history before relaxing at Lake Sède to observe the mountains.

Discover our information on Saint-Gaudens

Saint-Gaudens
Saint-Gaudens


3 Relax in Montréjeau, its lake and its aquapark

We approach Lannemezan to go to a preserved site at the entrance to the Pyrenees valleys, in Montréjeau. Visit its royal bastide with its medieval architecture or the Château de Valmirande which stands facing the Pyrenees with its magnificent white stone structure. The 41-hectare park is breathtaking with nearly 200 species of immense trees, offering a pleasant stroll that you can take with a guided tour. The marble stables and the pretty chapel will be part of the walk, punctuated with stories and anecdotes about the place's past. Don't forget to rest at Lac de Montréjeau, a small wooded nugget where a 30-hectare lake offers good times for swimming and fishing. Of course, you can prefer to slide, jump and dive at the aquapark of Lake Montréjeau, a swimming area designed to delight young and old alike.

Lake Montréjeau Photo: patrice-bon-cc0
Lake Montréjeau Photo: patrice-bon-cc0

4 Visit Aurignac

This time on the road to Aurignac going up towards Toulouse, a medieval city where alleys and half-timbered buildings take you to another time. With a rich heritage of more than 35,000 years, its history stretches from prehistory to the Middle Ages, up to modern times. The Saint-Pierre church, the Comtal castle, the rock shelter and the Aurignacian museum are all sites to visit to discover the incredible past of a town perched on a rocky spur. Set off to discover old Aurignac and stroll along the medieval streets where craftsmen will be delighted to show you their work.

Read our fact sheet on Aurignac


5 Admire the Château de Valmirande

We told you about it above, the Château de Valmirande is worth the detour when you visit the Comminges region. Nicknamed the little Chambord of the Pyrenees, it is hidden out of sight behind a magnificent row of trees. Imagined by Baron Bertrand de Lassus at the end of the 19th century, it was created thanks to the architect Louis Garros in just 3 years. With a height of 40 meters, it is inspired by the castles of the Loire with a medieval tower and outbuildings in the Bigourdan style. A chapel and a stable were added to the plan over the years, perfectly executed buildings that absolutely must be visited. Extend the day and admire the splendid landscaped park created by the brothers Denis and Eugène Buhler, renowned for the creation of the Tête d'Or park in Lyon and the Borély park in Marseille. The Domaine de Valmirande is a true jewel of the Pyrenees to discover in Montréjeau.

Chateau de Valmirande Photo: Florent Pécassou CC BY-SA 3.0
Chateau de Valmirande Photo: Florent Pécassou CC BY-SA 3.0


6 Rush into the Gargas Caves

We don't go far away to stop at the Grottes de Gargas, in Aventignan. The only decorated caves in the Hautes-Pyrénées open to the public, experience a timeless moment and immerse yourself 27,000 years ago, to the Cro-Magnon era. The rock drawings retrace the lives of Stone Age hunters, through silhouettes of ibexes and bison, trophies of their hunt. A little further, in the depths of the Gargas Caves, there are various stencilled hands which intrigue with their shape and missing phalanges. Mutilation, language or ritual, the mystery remains. End this unmissable visit with the Nestploria, a digital interpretation center with interactive devices which perfectly complements the discovery of the Gargas Caves.

7 Take a break at Lake Boulogne-sur-Gesse (Lac de la Gimone)

We move away from the mountains to take a break on the magnificent Lake Boulogne-sur-Gesse. Covering an area of 4 wooded hectares dominated by a sumptuous 8-arch viaduct, the lake offers numerous activities for a sporting or relaxing day. Tennis, fishing, children's play area, orienteering course, have fun all year round in a soothing and green setting. Come back in summer, you will have access to a heated swimming pool, slides, pedal boats and mini golf. Picnic in the shade before setting off on the “petit train” path, an old railway line which took you by train to Toulouse.

Lac de la gimone Photo: F123-CC-BY-SA-4.0
Lac de la gimone Photo: F123-CC-BY-SA-4.0

8 Explore the many hikes on the Comminges trails

The Pays de Comminges is the ideal destination for nature lovers. Departing from Saint-Gaudens, Montréjeau, Aurignac, Boulogne-sur-Gesse or Isle-en-Dodon, take marked and maintained routes to discover the region from Toulouse to Bagnères-de-Luchon. Some cycle routes join the greenways, which you can find on a downloadable application with integrated GPS to guide you at each stage of your hike. Comminges has 1000 kilometers of trails to explore all year round. Streams, mountains, meadows, lakes, the landscapes are breathtaking. Strengthen your calves, let's go hiking.


9 Discover Bagnères-de-Luchon

At the foot of the highest peaks of the Pyrenees range nestles the pretty town of Bagnères-de-Luchon, a spa resort renowned for its unique setting and its thermal waters heated to 34°C. Visit a mountain town discovered by the Romans with a refined and picturesque architectural ensemble, including the casino, the theater or the Edmond Rostand villa which are worth the detour. Relax in the Luchon vaporarium, the only natural hammam in Europe with warm and soothing mists before climbing the 250 km of marked trails. Bagnères-de-Luchon is also the discovery of a museum installed in a small castle which preserves multiple archaeological and historical collections, as well as exhibitions of contemporary arts. Escape to a privileged setting, visit the “Queen of the Pyrenees” .

Read our fact sheet on Bagnère-de-Luchon

Résidence Vacancéole L’Illixon***

Résidence Vacancéole L’Illixon***
Résidence Vacancéole L’Illixon***

In the extreme south of Haute-Garonne, in the heart of the Pyrenees, the Illixon*** tourist residence welcomes you ...

120 m - Bagnères-de-Luchon

Hotel & Spa Gasquet

Hotel & Spa Gasquet
Hotel & Spa Gasquet

Hotel and Spa Gasquet in Bagnères de Luchon Our Hotel Luchon Spa Gasquet offers 20 rooms on the alleys of Etigny. ...

163 m - Bagnères-de-Luchon

Le Patio de Luchon

Le Patio de Luchon
Le Patio de Luchon

WELCOME In the heart of the Pyrenees, Le Patio de Luchon welcomes you in an old hotel entirely renovated in guest ...

193 m - Bagnères-de-Luchon


10 Cycling in the Pays de Comminges

Mountain bikes, electric bikes or hybrid bikes, there is plenty to ride on the Comminges trails which are all marked. With 70 maintained routes, escape to the countryside, mountains or greenways thanks to the Comminges hiking application, practical and easy to use. Whatever the time of year, you can escape astride your saddle for a loop of a few kilometers or for the day. You don't have the necessary equipment? Go to Saint-Gaudens and its surrounding areas without delay to rent or have your cycle repaired. With friends or family, these are good times to share in the heart of the Pyrenees.


It's certain, Comminges will be your next vacation destination. With these top 10 visits not to be missed, you have all the good ideas for planning your getaway. Inhale, enjoy, you are in the Pyrenees.

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