Journey into the Cantal, Auvergne mountains


From Clermont-Ferrand to Murat takes about 90 minutes by train, and cost me £17 one way. Then it was a transfer by car to Bruno and Valerie’s Auberge d’Aijean, our inn for the night. Just past Murat, you can see the snowline appearing for the first time.

The winter here has been mild. It is still scenic in a wintry way but I can imagine how this notches up quite a few extra beauty points when covered in snow. Still, Valerie guided me on a nature hike this afternoon, which was pretty and helped me acclimatise from my sedentary job to actually walking. Tomorrow morning we get to snowshoe on the Puy Mary volcano peak.

So, the press trip is about to start – the two other journalists are arriving in half an hour and we will begin with a Nordic bath, which I believe is a a sort of alfresco hot tub, before chef Bruno’s dinner.

Apologies for awkward wordflows. I’ve been speaking in broken French for two days and my writing is stuck in transit.

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