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The French Town on the Edge of a Giant Hole

The French town of Bozouls sits on the edges of a deep canyon, one carved over millions of years by a river. The village was founded on the site a thousand years ago as a defense against invaders. It's as if hundreds of homes sprung up around the lip of the Grand Canyon! But in Bozouls, the town's history on display is as charming as its setting.     

To understand Bozouls, it helps to understand the vibe of its encompassing Aveyron region . Not close enough to Paris to be day-trip-able, nor southern enough to be truly on the Côte d’Azur circuit like its neighbour, Nice, this is the land of sweeping, silent gorges. It’s an endless horizon of tumbling gold fields, cows born with black-lined eyes, and Griffon vultures. It’s bar none at making knives, and hiding a medieval treasure in mountain village. Above all, it’s the old stomping grounds of the Knights Templar, and an essential leg of the pilgrimage route of Saint Jacques de Compostelle, a network of ancient roads that culminate at his tomb in north-west Spain. The air is filled with a silent, palpable intensity. The tourist slogan is, “Welcome to Aveyron, Land of Emotion.”

See plenty of pictures of Bozouls at Messy Messy Chic.

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