The 9 Most Beautiful Hikes To Do In Cantal

The 9 Most Beautiful Hikes to do in Cantal

Discover the most beautiful hikes to do in Cantal, nestled in the heart of the Massif Central in France. From mountains to volcanoes, lush green pastures to picturesque landscapes, our guide has everything you need to plan your perfect adventure. Join us and embark on an unforgettable journey to explore the best hiking trails that Cantal has to offer.

Located in the heart of the Parc des Volcans d’Auvergne and the Massif Central, the Cantal department boasts stunning mountains and picturesque landscapes, waiting to be explored on foot. With a plethora of attractions ranging from cheese to volcanoes, hilly terrains to parks, there’s always something to entice visitors.

Nestled amidst the Massif Central, the department is a haven for hikers and outdoor enthusiasts. Join us as we guide you through the mountain paths, where green pastures come alive with grazing Auvergne cows and breathtaking vistas await.


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So, join us and discover the best hikes in Cantal, as we embark on an adventure to explore this beautiful region on foot.

1. The Col d’Eylac, the Puy de Peyre Arse and the Puy Mary

  • Duration: about 3h20
  • Distance: 9.2 km
  • Height difference: 599 m
  • Difficulty: Medium

Take the height! The hikes of Cantal allow it widely, thanks to its location in the heart of the Massif Central. To explore the Col d’Eylac, it is at nearly 1,800 meters above sea level that you will have to climb.

Of course, the moderate level of this hike confirms the gentle ascent, especially since it starts at about 1,300 m. On the landscape side, it is the horizon that reaches out to you, adorned with its most beautiful mountains and wonderful valleys.

Above you, the flat immensity of the sky contrasts with the reliefs and greenery under your feet. You will pass on the ridge on the Puy Mary, famous in the vicinity, as well as the Puy de Peyre Arse.

That said, no loss of balance in sight, these ridges are wide enough to ensure the safe passage of hikers.

2. The Tour of Puy Griou

  • Duration: about 3h15
  • Distance: 8.9 km
  • Height difference: 460 m
  • Difficulty: Medium

The Puy Griou is one of the domes of the Massif Central very visited, because of the challenge it can represent. Moreover, its name comes from a local dialect, and means “painful to mount”. However, the hiking trails that lead to it are now adjusted to allow everyone to discover this puy.

From Font-de-Cère, in the heart of the Regional Natural Park of the Volcanoes of Auvergne, begins the ascent to Puy Griou, on an adapted and accessible path.

Follow some wide ridges, pass on paths through the trees, everything is good for a communion with nature … Once at the top, an incredible panorama awaits you. Perched at 1,690 meters above sea level, it’s the entire horizon that you embrace.

3. Albepierre and its waterfalls

  • Duration: about 3h30
  • Distance: 10.1 km
  • Height difference: 348 m
  • Difficulty: Medium

Albepierre is a pretty little village wedged between two valleys, very close to the Lioran ski resort. But beyond the slopes and descents full of thrills, what interests us are the waterfalls of the natural area of Albepierre.

From the south, discover a clear path through dense forest, punctuated by waterfalls. Thus, the waterfalls of Vergnes, Prapsou and Prés Longs await you patiently, pouring water from the river Le Lagnon. This is the time to enjoy the most beautiful things cantalouse has to offer.

Small bonus for lovers of two wheels: it is possible to make this hike by bike, as long as it is equipped for the mountain.

4. The Col de Prat-de-Bouc and the Plomb du Cantal

  • Duration: about 2 hours
  • Distance: 7.9 km
  • Height difference: 448 m
  • Difficulty: Medium

There are hikes in Cantal that offer you a particularly panoramic overview of the region. This is the case with this one. By taking the height, up to 1,855 meters to reach Plomb du Cantal from the Col de Prat-de-Bouc, you will have the opportunity to enjoy it.

Following the loop, you first start by climbing, braving the difference in altitude in front of you. During this ascent, you may come across Aubrac cows, typical of the region, grazing quietly in their fields.

Then, once at The Plomb, find a refuge that will allow you to eat and take a short break in your journey. But above all, it is an opportunity to fully enjoy the view that is offered to you.

Finally, the descent begins, the landscapes evolve but the cows are always present, to animate the journey.

5. The Col de Pertus and the Col du Gliziou

  • Duration: about 4 hours
  • Distance: 12.4 km
  • Height difference: 578 m
  • Difficulty: Difficult

In the heart of the Massif Central, a pretty loop in nature is about to amaze you. It all starts at the Col de Pertus, with a rather important ascent before reaching a quieter path.

Direction Col du Gliziou, from where you will observe the Puy de l’Usclade on the left and of course, the Puy Gliziou right in front. You will then go to Liadouze then Larmandie where we recommend a short break.

Indeed, the last quarter of the hikes of the Cantal often requires a last effort, as here, where the difference in altitude increases again. All along the way, you can see beautiful panoramas of the surrounding valleys, through the many trees of the forest.

6. The Biaguin Waterfall Trail

  • Duration: about 1 hours
  • Distance: 3.7 km
  • Height difference: 137 m
  • Difficulty: Easy

For a short walk, some hikes in Cantal are also perfectly suitable.

To reach the Biaguin Waterfall, you will walk along the Mars and its tributaries, which dig one of the valleys of the Massif Central. From La Chaze, it is not very complicated, it is a question of following the stream to the waterfall, refreshing.

The path crosses a forest, very green and leafy, typical of the Regional Natural Park of volcanoes. A true ode to nature, quiet and reflective.

7. The Circus of Mandailles

  • Duration: about 9 hours
  • Distance: 27.2 km
  • Height difference: 1,105 m
  • Difficulty: Difficult

The circus of Mandailles brings together several puys: Chavaroche, Mary, Peyre Arse, Usclade, Griou and Elancèze. In winter, it is a paradise for skiers and snowshoe enthusiasts. In summer, on the other hand, it is the ideal place to dwell on its nature, fauna and flora.

During this hike, you will brush the puys, you will approach some more than others. But in any case, you will be able to widely observe them and bring back precious memories.

This is an opportunity to visit the Cantal and its puys in one go! This trail is one of the longest hikes in Cantal with its 27 kilometers, but free yourself from the difficulty. The difference in altitude is rarely steep.

8. The Rouffier and the Roc du Merle

  • Duration: about 2 hours
  • Distance: 7.2 km
  • Height difference: 442 m
  • Difficulty: Medium

Above the Mars Valley where the villages of Falgoux, La Combe, Fontolive or La Chaze are located, discover this pleasant hike, with clearings and unevenness.

Without any possible dispute, the Vallée de Mars is one of the most beautiful valleys of Cantal. Its flora is very rich (in peat bogs, in particular) and its fauna protected.

Then go on the ascent to the Roc du Merle, at 1,344 meters above sea level. From this summit, the Roc du Merle offers you a magnificent 180 ° view and the valley reaches out to you, enjoy!

9. The Eagle’s Beak Circuit and the Venus Nipple

  • Duration: about 3 hours
  • Distance: 8.5 km
  • Height difference: 504 m
  • Difficulty: Medium

Among the Hikes of Cantal that we offer, this one has one of the most important elevation differences. It is therefore necessary to have a good physical condition to carry out this hike.

On the way, magnificent views, the horizon and the relief of the Massif Central. At the highest point, you will have the opportunity to observe the villages below the Puy de Massebœuf.

But above all, this route will allow you to approach the Teton of Venus, a peak with a pointed end, and the Bac de l’Aigle, dominating at 1,700 meters above sea level. Do not be surprised if, on the way, you hear the metal bells of the cows resting in the corner.


Our guide has compiled a comprehensive list of the most awe-inspiring hikes to explore in Cantal. It’s time to put on your hiking boots, pack your backpack, and get ready to immerse yourself in the breathtaking beauty of Cantal’s most picturesque trails. I hope you find the article “The 9 Most Beautiful Hikes to do in Cantal” helpful.

Al Amin Sagor

Hi, I'm Al Amin Sagor. Join me as I share travel tips, personal insights, and amazing experiences that have shaped my adventures. Let's explore together and make lasting memories.

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