Thursday, October 24, 2013

St. Pourçain sur Sioule, France - visited July 9, 2012

Still in the Auvergne region, we headed north and shortly descended from the Massif Central, skirted Clermont Ferrand and eventually came to St. Pourçain sur Sioule.
In the Allier department of the Auvergne region, St. Pourçain sur Sioule sits along the river Sioule and is home to around 5,000 inhabitants. The city lies at the crossroads of the north-south Clermont-Ferrand to Paris road and the east-west Lyon to Limoges highway.
It is probable that a swineherd called Porcianus or Purcianus, sometime in the 5th century CE, was elevated to abbot of a monastery that was built on the hill overlooking the river Sioule. In the 14th century the village was fortified into a walled city. Around this time the it was known as St. Pourçain Arbors from the grapevines grown on trellises or arbors. Following the Revolution it was renamed Mont-sur-Sioule but after the revolutionary fervor died down it became known as St. Pourçain sur Sioule early in the 19th century.
The municipal campground, contained in a park on an island in the Sioule, is very comfortable and enjoys a lot of family friendly activities. See here for more pictures of this city.