France is made of more than 32,000 villages, some are more beautiful than others. The prettiest villages are a part of an association called: “the most beautiful villages in France”. Saint Cirq Lapopie is one of them. It was also voted the favourite French village back in 2012! We visited Saint Cirq Lapopie while traveling on a péniche (houseboat) in the South West of France in the Lot département in the Midi Pyrenees region. Saint Cirq Lapopie is about 30km east of Cahors in the Quercy national park.
Nested atop a cliff, perched 100m above the Lot river, the medieval village architecture is outstanding. The castle ruins built as a fortress dates back from the 12th century onwards and the romanesque church from the 15th century. The houses date back from the 14th century and some were built with part of the castles as the 100 hundred years’ war was raging. Saint Cirq Lapopie has been shared between different feudal families; Lapopie, de Gourdon and de Cardaillac. The village is known for its rich artisans heritage; tanners, wood-turners and cauldron makers.
Many French artists and writers such as Andre Breton and Man Ray took residence in Saint Cirq Lapopie and has many art galleries worth a visit.