With nearly 900 kilometers to its credit, the GR653 between Arles and Somport remains one of the major roads leading to Santiago de Compostela. This so-called southern route offers invaluable attractions, both in terms of heritage and geography. It connects the Mediterranean and Atlantic slopes, with L'Isle-Jourdain as the gateway to the Gers and the first departmental stopover after Toulouse.
L'Isle-Jourdain has not lost its Gascon accent! With its XNUMXth century tower, its collegiate church with classical architecture, its dovecotes and its mansion "Claude Augé" with stained glass in Art Nouveau style ...
Facing a total panorama overlooking the Pyrenees, between green slopes and soft hills, the circuit will take you to Likewise, Capital of Gascony and Grand Site Midi-Pyrénées. Your eyes will be delighted with the Sainte-Marie cathedral (XV-XVIIth centuries), a major site classified by Unesco, while climbing the 234 steps (374 in total with double flights) of the monumental staircase overhung by the statue. of the famous musketeer d'Artagnan, or even by surveying the pousterles (medieval alleys) ... The detour to the Tourist Office is essential: it is a place of visit and information, its 3rd floor gives you a unique view of the cathedral.
Auch is also the second collection of pre-Columbian art in France, tours all year round with guide-lecturers from the Country of Art and History!
This beautiful road, between bastides and castelnaux, will reveal many treasures to you, before the last Gers stopover in the heart of Marciac, with its central arcaded square and its 90th century church with a bell tower reaching 1298m high. You will be here in the most swinging of the bastides founded in XNUMX, labeled "Grand Site Midi-Pyrénées" and soul of jazz in the Gers.
Your path will end in the Hautes-Pyrénées at the village of Maubourguet.
Difficulty level: On this 140 km journey, no particular difficulty. Be suitably equipped and don't forget to stock up on water in very hot weather.
Ranking & labels
- Distance: 140.00 km
- Type of route: Equestrian
- Type of route: Walking
- Route type: Religious
- Type of route: MTB
- Type of route: On the paths of Saint-Jacques