Fourcès is a village in the Occitania region of Gers, located on the border of Lot-et-Garonne, 55 km northwest of Auch and 13 km from Condom.
In the heart of the ancient province of Gascony, Fourcès is a bastide (new town) founded on the remains of an ancient medieval castle (Xe) destroyed in the 15th century.
The originality of the locality is to have been built according to a circular plan on a summit lodged in a loop of the river, Auzoue.
Having preserved a large part of its rich built heritage (castle, half-timbered houses, arcades), Fourcès is now member of the very selective association of the Most Beautiful Villages of France.
Although it paid a heavy price for rural exodus (about 280 inhabitants today compared to more than a thousand in the 19th century), Fourcès still has many producers (wines and Armagnac liqueur, foie gras, cheeses) Which contribute to its tourist attractiveness. Very lively in summer, the city is certainly worth the detour.
A discovery of the village begins with its astonishing Place des Cornières, of round form, dotted with medieval houses (13th, 14th centuries) with half-timberings and arcades, which once surrounded the original castle.
From this central point the streets go out.
During a walk in this authentic and picturesque setting, we will linger on several remarkable buildings.
This is the case of the Clock Tower (13th century), the former gate of the city, in the form of a belfry decorated with a pyramidal bell tower, which now gives access to the old paths of the round. These have been highlighted and now constitute arboretums.
The 15th century castle and its high facade adorned with mullioned windows, now a hotel, the bridge over the river of the fifteenth century are other points worth seeing.
The church of Sainte-Quitterie, of pre-Romanesque style, in a hamlet far from the heart of the city, also deserves a visit. Inside, there is a Romanesque stone baptismal basin and an altar made of carved wood from the 17th century. As for the church of Saint-Laurent, at the entrance of the bastide itself, of medieval origin, it was reworked in the XIXe century but the chevet and the bell-tower of Gothic style were conserved.
In addition to these few buildings (one could still mention the halls), the charm of the whole historic heart, where medieval houses and houses of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries cohabit, is in itself a patrimonial jewel in the open sky.
To better appreciate the history and architectural treasures of the village, guided tours are possible by contacting +33 5 62 28 00 80.
Fourciès is also located on the GR 654 which takes the road to Santiago de Compostela from Belgium and Vézelay, and can be the starting point for many hiking or cycling. Maps, brochures and information on +33 5 62 28 00 80.
If you can play a game of petanque in the shade of the plane trees of the central square, for tennis, a court is available from May to October (information on +33 5 62 29 40 13). As for the fishermen, the river can seduce them. Regulatory information and the most suitable sites for +33 5 62 63 41 50.
The last weekend of April, flower market throughout the historic heart of the village.
The last Sunday of June, Painters in the Street day (exhibitions, sales, workshops and animations).
During the famous Marciac jazz festival, one or more concerts are decentralized to Fourcès (from the end of July to the middle of August). The musicians perform on the central square. Free admission.
The second Sunday of August, book market.
The third weekend of August, patronal festival.
The last weekend of August, the Rencontres de Sainte-Quitterie program classical concerts and meetings in the church.
In the middle of October, harvest festival (meal, ball, animations).
Note that from May to November, every second Sunday of the month, the village hosts a famous flea market.