We arrived in Puy l’Eveque around 10am in the morning. Good sign – it was a lovely warm spring day. Bad sign – couldn’t find anywhere to park, perhaps because it was market day. It took a few minutes to find that there is plenty of parking at the west edge of the town, very little if you approach from the east.
It also turned out that the town looks very attractive if you approach from the east (Cahors side) but less so from the west (Fumel side). Don’t be discouraged whichever side you are coming from! As it turned out Puy l’Eveque is small and it doesn’t really matter where you park.
There was a sign marked ‘panorama’ so we took a look out across the roof tops of the town, which was very pretty. Just below the panorama was a garden that looked long abandoned but was in a beautiful position – I wonder why they didn’t make more of it.
Anyway, we quickly found a narrow path that dropped into the town, and within about 30 seconds we were lost in the maze of small passages that seem to link the streets of the town. One minute climbing steeply, the next descending towards the river, around every corner Puy l’Eveque seemed to offer another little surprise. I was pleased we no longer have young children to be pushed around in buggies.
Sometimes a quaint doorway, other times a tiny courtyard with table and chairs would appear, some houses nicely renovated others looking untouched in the last century. All were equally charming.
After a while we found ourselves on the banks of the Lot River at the bottom of the village and got our bearings, but soon rose back into the labyrinth. The hemmed in passageways made Puy seem bigger than it really was.
Above the town it was more open. The market square in front of the mairie was a hive of activity as locals bought their fresh fruit and vegetables. There was also a small bread stall, but we resisted because the prices weren’t displayed and there was a plate of ‘samples’ that you could try before buying – our previous experiences of French market stalls like this suggested that it was a ‘tourist bread stall’ and the prices would therefore be extortionate.
Just along the road was a church called Saint Sauveur, which had an attractive double door entrance with stone statues above. Our guide book told us that the church still bore the marks of a huguenot invasion
that took place several centuries ago, but I was in a hurry to eat the patisserie we had bought so didn’t see them. Stomach before history.
Last stop on our visit was across the river, to admire the view back across to the town. This is probably the best view of Puy l’Eveque and I’m glad we did. I would have enjoyed the view even without my apple cake, but that helped me enjoy it even more.
Highly recommended if you are in the southern Lot, southern Dordogne or north-eastern Lot-et-Garonne regions of France.