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Saint Eloy les Mines - a thriving market town

St Eloy les Mines is a thriving market town that sits amid the green and pretty countryside of the Puy de Dôme department in central France. Having regenerated itself after the demise of the coal mining industry that once supported its economy, the town has a dynamic approach to life and an excellent standard of living, yet retains a pride in its history and a traditional charm in its appearance.

"Beside a lake, beneath the trees..."

Wordsworth's immortal line may have been written about daffodils, but the words also describe the setting of St Eloy to perfection. The town lies by the River Bouble, and to add to its watery charms a lovely lake has been created on the edge of the town in a basin that bore testimony to its mining history. The area is typically green, with trees flourishing from the fertile mineral rich earth and the gentle agreeable climate. In fact, a view of the lake, or Plan d'Eau, is almost interchangeable with a view of England's very own tree-fringed Lake Windermere.

Markets and shopping

St Eloy les Mines has good shopping facilities, and all the usual services available too, with doctors, schools, banks and other necessities based in the town. Perhaps the best time to shop, though, is Saturday morning, when the traditional street market sets up in the centre of the town and fills the air with enticing scents and sounds. There can be no nicer way to shop than at a French street market, and certainly it is the best way to find local specialities, truly fresh fruits and vegetables as well as a host of intriguing odds and ends.

Dining out

St Eloy les Mines has a number of restaurants ranging from fine dining in the traditional French style, to kebab shops and pizzerias. Something to suit all ages, tastes and pockets there then, and enough options to suit every mood.

Out and about

St Eloy les Mines is passionate about providing a great quality of life for its residents, and thus has lots of sporting associations to keep everybody happy and active. There is a good swimming pool in the town, and there are many other activities laid on at the excellent nautical centre on the lake. Land based activities include walking in the beautiful countryside, horse-riding and fishing.

How to get there

Unfortunately, the airport of Clermont Ferrand doesn't offer direct flights to the UK, so you will have to fly into Lyon, St Etienne or Limoges. Lyon is served by Air France, British Airways, easyJet and bmi; St Etienne by Ryanair; and Limoges by Ryanair and flybe. Paris is another option, situated a little further away but has the advantage of easy links to train services which will get you to the capital of the department, Clermont Ferrand. If travelling by road you will find St Eloy near the A71 auto route.

Property prices and availability in and around Saint Eloy les Mines

The Puy de Dôme is one of France's better kept secrets, at least as far as the foreign property market is concerned, so St Eloy les Mines could be the ideal place to make a very sensible investment while prices are still low. No one keeps a secret for ever, though, so don't wait too long!

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Saint Eloy les Mines AT A GLANCE

WHERE IS Saint Eloy les Mines?

Saint Eloy les Mines is located in central France, on the Massif Central. It lies in the north-west of the Puy de Dôme department.

Saint Eloy les Mines Property Map


Auvergne Guide

Auvergne Property Map


Puy-de-Dôme Guide

  Puy-de-Dôme Map

Population: 4,417

Access: By air: Airports with direct flights to the region are Lyon, St Etienne or Limoges.By rail: The TGV stops at nearby Clermont Ferrand making the train a possible choice. By road: The A71 motorway will take you near the town.

Economy: The economy is largely based on industry.

Interesting fact: The town has a charming legend of Saint Ménelée and his companions who stopped to rest beside the River Bouble on the edge of Saint Eloy. The story has it that while they rested, plants and trees spontaneously grew to shelter them.


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