Two regional nature reserves
Mond’Arverne is the ultimate land of nature, and is fortunate enough to find itself in two regional nature reserves at the same time. The variety of natural wonders, the heritage and the diverse landscapes make these protected areas highly suitable for hiking and for mountain biking, and for paragliding too!
In the west of the region, you’ll be entering the Parc Naturel Régional des Volcans d’Auvergne, where you’ll really be at the heart of the ancient volcanic massifs. Lakes and rivers have had their place here for a very long time, with ridges and valleys, domes and plateaux, all set amid thick and omnipresent vegetation. This huge area is formed of five natural regions with unique scenery. From the mountains of Cantal, including the Artense and the Cézallier, and not forgetting the Monts Dore and the Puy de Sancy, the most symbolic of them all is still the Chaîne des Puys, which recently won UNESCO World Heritage Site status. The western section of the Mond’Arverne area is part of the latter, punctuated here and there by hills and volcanic landforms.
And the further you descend eastwards, the softer the landscapes become. You leave behind the high volcanoes with their rounded domes and the hills with their sharp ridges clinging to the clouds, and you enter the Parc Naturel Régional du Livradois-Forez. Spanning three French departments, this vast area of highland countryside is home to various interesting villages, as well as the knife-manufacturing town of Thiers, and La Chaise-Dieu, with its famous abbey.
From the heights of Yronde-et-Buron and over the hanging gardens of Château de Busséol, looking eastwards you’ll see the foothills of the Livradois. With a snug and hidden feel, the far east of Mond’Arverne is covered by thick forest and vast areas of grassland, while the hillsides take over from the volcanic mounds.
Mond’Arverne is the ultimate land of nature, and is fortunate enough to find itself in two regional nature reserves at the same time.