Tournemire is instantly appealing, with its huddle of cottages and be-towered Chateau d’Anjony, built at the time of Jeanne d'Arc. Lying a little off the tourist trail this is a village that could easily be missed. Mid-way between Aurillac and Mauriac, this little hamlet of fewer than 200 inhabitants is characterised by superb examples of Cantalian architecture. It is just one of two 'Most Beautiful villages' in Cantal (the other is Salers).
Vehicular access to the village is reserved to residents, but there is adequate parking adjoining the tourist information office. In any case, this is a place for perambulation, for a leisurely stroll that will allow you to take everything in. Ask at the tourist office for the leaflet "Petite notice sur le village de Tournemire", which will take you on a tour of discovery.
The castle was built around 1430 by Louis d'Anjony, one of Joan of Arc's companions whose mission was to represent the king's authority. It is a typical example of the mountain fortresses built in the 15th century. Until the French Revolution, the castle had a very tumultuous story because for two centuries a real 'vendetta' or feud opposed the d'Anjony family to their neighbours and rivals, the Tournemire family.
While from the outside the dungeon may seem stately and severe, its rooms are richly furnished and decorated with outstanding 16th-century frescoes. The castle has been the home of the same family from the beginning and it has been open to the public for 70 years.
There is a seasonal tourist information office at the entrance to the village, but most tourist information is handled by the office in Salers.
Pays de Salers Tourist Office
Tel: 04 71 40 58 08
Le Bourg, 15310 TOURNEMIRE.
Tel: 04 71 47 61 28
A small and charming 8-roomed hotel on the road below the Tournemire castle. Small covered swimming pool. The restaurant serves typically Auvergne dishes.