Capital of the Couserans, Saint-Girons takes place in the heart of the region Occitanie, Ariège. Near Saint-Lizier, the town is one of the two sub-prefectures of the department, with Pamiers. Located in the Pyrenees, the town is located at a crossroads, between the mountain, the plains and the Salat valley. Situated not far from the Spanish border, it is ideally situated to enjoy a holiday in the countryside, near the most beautiful architectural sites of the surroundings.
Appeared as a town at the beginning of the twelfth century, that which was called Lunoque to the French Revolution, did not cease to spread over the following centuries. The arrival of the railway at the end of the nineteenth century, gives it a great economic place in the region, and opens it to the great cities like Foix. It was at this time that Saint-Girons developed an economy linked to the driving force of rivers, such as flour mills or sawing wood, as well as milling machines for the textile industry. The first paper mills make their appearance, always present on the commune.
Rich in architectural heritage, Saint-Girons seduces for its monuments, but also its ancestral culture and its preserved traditions.
There are plenty of places to visit in the municipality of Saint-Girons, and the different landscapes end up attracting passing visitors.
Built in the XIXth century, in the golden age of Saint-Girons, the church still unveils today a bell tower of the fourteenth century. One can also discover stalls in carved wood, as well as an organ of the late nineteenth century.
Oldest, the church of Saint-Valier presents a portal dating from the twelfth century. A sarcophagus dating from the same period is discovered behind the high altar. The building is currently listed in the Historic Monuments for its architectural and cultural interest.
Walking through the streets of the city, you can admire several monuments paying tribute to the great personalities of Saint-Girons. One can thus see a sculpture by Aristide Bergès, a great paper industrialist, or a monument to the memory of Oscar and Jean Auriac. The latter is the work of Patrice Bonnet and Carlo Sarrabezolles. Engraved, an epitaph pays homage to the two men: "The father lived for France, the son died for her."
The former vicomtal castle, which today houses the media library, used to serve as a prison. In its cellars, a Roman cippe in white marble of the first century can be admired. In the city, the pharmacy at the corner of the rue Gambetta and the place Aristide Briand reveals a facade of 1927 in gilded mosaics recalling the Spanish azulejos. Under cover, a bookstore shop presents a 1900s decor.
Dating back to the 16th century, the Old Bridge is bordered by marble pavements of the country.
At the crossroads of seven streets, the Place Pasteur has its originality to have been conceived on Roman military coastlines.
Classified as Historic Monuments, the monument to the dead of Saint-Girons is the work of the architect Patrice Bonnet. One finds in particular the statue of a widow in country dress.
Located in the former SNCF station, the Chemin de la Liberté is a museum depicting the history of those who refused the Nazi oppression in the Second World War and fled to Spain. Many testimonies and other objects pay tribute to these smugglers.
Office of Community Tourism Saint-Girons Saint-Lizier: Office of St-Girons: Tel. : +33 5 61 96 26 60.
Every Saturday morning, Saint-Girons hosts one of the largest markets of the department on the Alleys of Champ de Mars. A fair is held every second and fourth Monday of the month, while a Christmas market offers local crafts in December. Every year on January 2nd and November 2nd, the city offers its fair for horses and donkeys.
A festival of sacred arts organizes concerts from late April to mid-May.
Cycling race, the round of Isard takes place in May.
In July, the path of freedom is a march commemorating the smugglers' activities between Saint-Girons and Spain during the Second World War.
The big festivals of the city, with funfair and other animated animations, take place between the end of July and the beginning of August.
In August, Couserans was once an opportunity to discover activities highlighting the ancestral traditions of the country, including harvests, folk dances, exhibitions, fireworks, shows, or even horse competitions.
At the beginning of August, the Rite festival proposes a week of meetings and celebrations around the cultures of the world with representations of singers, dancers and musicians.
An antique salon and flea market take place every year in mid-August.
The Oussaillès marathon runs through the commune of Saint-Girons in August.
Cycling solidarity race, the Casartelli offers each September to pay tribute to the cyclist of the same name, died during a race in the vicinity.
In October, Théâtrales en Couserans is an opportunity to attend performances revolving around a changing theme each year.
Every two years in October, the bird show allows you to take an interest in birds of all kinds.
The exhibition of cartophiles Ariège, in October, is an opportunity to find rarities for collectors.
The night of Trad ', at the beginning of November, proposes a fair and other animations and spectacles.