Between Uzès and Barjac, Lussan has the deserved reputation of being one of the most beautiful villages of Languedoc. Perched on a rocky platform, the medieval village resembles an island rising out of an ocean of undergrowth. An entirely car-free town surrounded by its walls, Lussan is criss-crossed by narrow lanes dotted with old houses. Three silk mills testify to the town's silk-making past.
The Château of Lussan, built at the end of the 15th century by the Audibert family, today houses the town hall. In its stateroom you can admire the beautiful 17th century painted ceiling, listed as a Historic Monument. Massive and imposing, the Château of Lussan has 4 corner towers, the highest of which, the Clock Tower, is surmounted by a campanile. The parapet walk opens up magnificent panoramic views over the farmlands and the hilly scrubland for as far as the eye can see.
The hilltop village of Lussan in the Gard
The Chateau of Lussan
The Château de Fan in Lussan
Artworks circuit and picnic area
The Concluses de Lussan
The abrupt cliffs dominate the Concluses de Lussan
With its population being mostly Protestant, Lussan suffered greatly during the War of the Camisards that followed the revoking of the Edict of Nantes in 1685. The Protestant church was destroyed and it wasn't until after the French Revolution in 1789 that the Catholics and Protestants finally lived together here in peace.
The places of worship were rebuilt in the 19th century: the Saint-Pierre Church in the centre of the village and the Protestant church of Lussan along the ramparts.
The soberness of the present-day church contrasts with the elegance of the big Gothic Revival windows and the tall, fluted columns inside.
Along the town's southern walls, you can visit the Jardin des Buis, a decorative garden planted with 200 varieties of Mediterranean plants.
To the northwest, the Place du Verger with its benches and picnic area invites you for a short break in its verdant setting from which you can contemplate the Cévennes and the surrounding mountains. Below it, you get a glimpse of the Château de Fan built in the 16th century, the ancestral home of André Gide's family. A private residence, it cannot be visited.
Back in the village, on the Maronniers square, you can have a drink at the outdoor café as you watch the boule players. Events liven up the square throughout the summer: "Lussan s'enflamme" with the bonfires for the festival of Saint John in late June, the "Lussan se Livre" book fair in late August and Art & Jardin in October.
An artistic promenade will take from the square in front of the Château de Lussan to the park of the Château de Fan.
The circuit presents many temporary and ephemeral works installed in the open air, sometimes hanging, sometimes submerged in the small river, sometimes even interactive. A pleasurable way of discovering the painters, glass-makers, sculptors and other renowned artists all while admiring the beautiful views over the region.
If you're looking for an original gift, stop by the "Les Céramiques de Lussan" workshops; their emblematic ceramic guinea fowl made them famous. You will find there many decorative objects.
In the area around Lussan
From the hamlet of Beth, a 4-kilometre trail leads to the menhir of La Lèque, called the Planted Stone. Standing 5.6 metres high, it is the highest in the south of France.
The Concluses de Lussan, 5 kilometres to the north of the village along the route to Verfeuil, are the untamed gorges of the Aiguillon. In summer, the torrent turns into a hiking trail and you can walk along 6 kilometres of rocky defiles below spectacularly abrupt cliffs.
Mairie de Lussan - Place du Château - 30580 Lussan
+33 (0)4 66 72 90 58http://www.mairie-lussan.fr/