The Chemin du Puy is one of four ancient routes through France that eventually join up with the Camino de Santiago. Covering an epic 750km, this segment is from Conques to Cahors, the former home to one of the most important abbeys on the pilgrimage, and the latter famous for superb red wine. Walk between 11- 24km per day through the Aveyron and Lot regions, passing through medieval villages, visiting ancient places of worship and taking plenty of paysan pauses for thought. Stay in small, comfortable accommodation, with your bags transported for you, and enjoy fine French fare along the way.
- Via Podiensis to Cahors
- Figeac, town of art and history
- Romanesque art
- Conques Abbey
Click to view map
Day 1: Arrival in Conques
Conques has a girdle of walls with fortified gateways, flanked with several towers and a network of tiny streets which lead to holy places and various living quarters. Life thrived here in ancient times thanks to its location on the Dourdou River, with plenty of mills, tanneries and artisan workshops. Whilst in Conques, it is worth visiting Sainte-Foy Abbey and the Treasury.
- Accommodation: Auberge St. Jacques or similar in Conques
Day 2: Conques to Livinhac-le-Haut | 24km
Leaving Conques, walk down to the Dourdou River crossing the medieval bridge. From here, climb gradually to the chapel of Sainte-Foy. The water from the small spring beside the chapel is said to cure tired eyes. The route continues through forests and lush green fields to the towns of Decazeville and Livinhac-le-Haut.
- Walking for the day: 24km, 5-6h,↑710m,↓790m
- Accommodation: Giîe Sur le Chemin or similar in Livinhac-le-Haut
Day 3: Livinhac-le-Haut to Figeac | 24km
Today, you notice the change in the landscape as you move from the Aveyron region into the region of Le Lot. You climb steadily for the first part of the day and then reach a viewpoint point looking back at Decazeville. The day ends in Figeac, which has many popular attractions including the medieval church of Eglise Saint-Sauveur, Musée Champollion (a small museum celebrating the life and work of Jean-François Champollion, the genius who figured out Egyptian hieroglyphs), and the Templar Commandery.
- Walking for the day: 24km, 5-6h,↑360m,↓360m
- Accommodation: Hotel des Bains or similar in Figeac
Day 4: Figeac to Gréalou | 21km
From Figeac, the route climbs up to a high plateau, so there are some ascents today but you are rewarded with fantastic views. You overnight in the tiny village of Gréalou.
- Walking for the day: 21km, 5h, ↑360m, ↓160m
- Accommodation: Gîte Ecoasis or similar in Gréalou
Day 5: Gréalou to Cajarc | 11km
Today’s route is through forests with less climbing, passing ancient dolmens, stone shelters unique to the region and stone crosses, including the oldest on the entire route. Cajarc is a small village surrounded by limestone cliffs, located on the banks of the Lot River.
- Walking for the day: 11km, 3h, ↑80m, ↓300m
- Accommodation: Hotel La Peyrade or similar in Cajarc
Day 6: Cajarc to Limognes-en-Quercy | 17km
Today’s walk takes you through woods and the agricultural lands of Causses-du-Quercy. Les Causses refers to a group of limestone plateaus in the Massif Central. It is quite an easy day’s walk, allowing you plenty of time to pace yourself and take in the lovely scenery.
- Walking for the day: 17km, 4h, ↑290m, ↓140m
- Accommodation: La Hulotte or similar in Limogne-en-Quercy
Day 7: Limognes-en-Quercy to Lalbenque/Mas-de-Vers | 22km
Today’s walk is mainly flat on woodland tracks as you continue your journey across Causses-de-Quercy. The forest here is very large, with paths going in all directions. Without a compass, maps or signs, it’s quite to get lost. On your way to Mas-de-Vers, you pass more dolmens and stone structures. If you get the chance, find a place to sample the region’s most celebrated delicacy, the black truffle. Depending on availability, you overnight in Mas-de-Vers or Lalbenque.
- Walking for the day: 22km, 5-6h, ↑90m, ↓130m
- Accommodation: Giîe de Poudally or similar in Lalbenque
Day 8: Lalbenque/Mas-de-Vers to Cahors | 18km
This stage starts from Lalbenque/Mas-de-Vers near Causses-du-Quercy and leads to the beautiful town of Cahors, built into a meander of the Lot River. The slightly undulating path runs through cultivated countryside and passes several villages. You pass many stone shepherd shelters, called caselles, unique to the region. As you walk into medieval Cahors, you get some fantastic views. Cahors has been awarded the Villes d’Art et d’histoire label and has an impressive history, including Valentré Bridge, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, or the Cathedral of Saint-Etienne de Cahors.
- Walking for the day: 18km, 4-5h, ↑170m, ↓310m
- Accommodation: Hotel Brit Le Valentré or similar in Cahors
Day 9: Departure
Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before departure. Extra nights available on request.
What to expect
Accommodation on this tour includes a mix of welcoming B&Bs and simple, comfortable hotels, with private rooms and en-suite bathrooms. Accommodation along the Camino route are usually stopover places, and unfortunately, we sometimes have a limited choice. They have been carefully selected based on a variety of criteria including their location, warm hospitality, fine local food or commitment to responsible tourism. Extra nights can be booked at any of the locations along the way. If you choose a double or a twin room, we will do our best to book this, but it will not always be possible to confirm the requested room type.
Important: We aim to book you into each town listed on the itinerary. However, in case of low availability, we may book you at nearby places.
Click to view default hotels
- Auberge St. Jacques (Conques)
- Gite Sur le Chemin (Livinhac-le-Haut)
- Hotel des Bains (Figeac)
- Gite Ecoasis (Gréalou)
- Hotel La Peyrade (Cajarc)
- B&B La Hulotte (Limogne-en-Quercy)
- Gite de Poudally (Lalbenque)
- Hotel Brit Le Valentré (Cahors)
Hotels are subject to availability. In the event of a particular hotel being fully booked for your chosen dates, we will replace it with a hotel of equal value and quality level. We will provide exact accommodation details to you upon booking confirmation.
Breakfast is included (usually a simple buffet breakfast/coffee and toast/bread/croissant) on all days. When no restaurant location is available on the route, lunches and snacks should either be bought from local shops, or packed lunches can be pre-ordered from your hotel the night before. There are many local restaurants available near to hotels for dinners.
Difficulty and terrain
This walk is graded moderate and includes walks of up to 24km a day and some of the walks have steeper ascents/descents. A reasonable level of fitness is required. This route can be challenging for those with little walking experience (read more about difficulty grades). Le Puy Camino follows a mixture of farm/dirt tracks, minor roads and footpaths. The route is marked with yellow painted arrows, but please take care at intersections. There are sections on the route where you will divert to follow the red and white stripes of the GR routes. There will often be other walkers around in case you are looking for help. We strongly advise you to follow only marked trails and never try to shorten the path through unknown and unmarked terrain. We provide you with maps, and you can call our local assistance phone number anytime.
When to go
This trip is available from the beginning of April until the end of October.
The weather in southern France is varied. In general, you can expect a mild warm climate and pleasant temperatures for walking, from 19C and up to about 26C in summer months. Summers in the south of France are hot, dry and sunny. Late spring and early autumn are less hot but usually still very pleasant and typically warm enough to spend your evenings eating outside.
The flexibility of self-guided walking holidays means that there are no fixed dates, and you can start your trip on any date during the season.
Click to view travel options
Our recommended arrival airport for this tour is Toulouuse. An alternative airport is Brive.
By train or bus
Arrival in Conques: From the airport of Toulouse, you can go to the train station of Toulouse Matabiau, get a train to Rodez, then take a taxi from Rodez to Conques. From Brive airport, you can go to the train station of Brive and also get a train to Rodez, then take a taxi from Rodez to Conques.
Departure from Cahors: At the end of your trip you can take a train from Cahors. You can also take a regular shuttle bus, Compostela, at the end of your trip to reach a train station or to travel back to the starting point. For timetables and further information check the website of SNCF for all French national trains.
- 8 nights in private en-suite rooms
- 8 breakfasts and 6 dinners
- Digital route description and maps
- Luggage transfers from hotel to hotel on all walking days (one piece up to 20kg per person)
- 24/7 phone assistance by our local office/representative
- Airfare and connecting land transfers
- Lunches and dinners, drinks and snacks
- Additional luggage
- Travel insurance (required – get a quote online)
- Personal expenses
- Local tourist taxes and entry fees (payable on the spot)
- Any items not explicitly listed as included
Options, extras and supplements
- If you’re travelling in a group, a supplement applies to group members who would like to have a room of their own
- This holiday is available for solo travellers; a supplement will be charged as accommodation and luggage transfer costs are not shared (we never mix and match – solo travellers will be accommodated in single rooms)
- Extra nights