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Presentation of the municipality
Saint-Laurent-des-Combes is a town of 262 inhabitants, part of the Saint Emilion Jurisdiction in the Canton Coteaux de Dordogne, it is located 3km south east of Saint-Emilion on high lands, over 300 m above sea level. its surface area is 386 hectares. Its inhabitants are called the Saints-Laurentais.
A bit of history...
The name 'Combes' commemorates the forest "Cumbis" (from the Greek root "Kumbe" meaning cavity) in which the monk Emilion would have found his hermitage at the time of the Moors in the 8th century.
Saint-Laurent-des-Combes took part in some great moments in French History. On May 15th, 1814 a large party washeld in honor of the return of King Louis XVIII and for the presence of the Duke of Angoulême in the area: "The white flag is raised. A solemn Mass with the Te Deum is celebrated. A banquet reunites the locals. In the evening there are dances and the town is illuminated."
Town life was situated mainly around the village church, but during the second half of the 19th century, it moved below the hill with the arrival of the railroads.
The town has been marked by several famous people: Jean de Foix, brother in law of King Louis XII, who resided in the Chateau de Candal. Raymond Theodore Troplong, who was President of tyhe Senate (1852-1869), residing at the Chateau Troplong Mondot. Professor Jean-Louis Faure, member of the Academy of Medicine, at the Chateau Bellefont-Blecier, who bequeathed in 1918 to the town 18 hectares of forest in order to make the "green lung" of the Jurisdiction. Also the doctor-general René Labusquiere, grand-son of Jean-Louis Faure, a great source for information on tropical medicine.
A hilly natural heritage
An exceptional site formed by a succession of valleys, the town offers a magnificent view from the edge of the limestone plateau where the Romanesque church is located. Then, from the square a view across the Dordogne valley is beautiful.
Saint-Laurent-des-Combes has few rivers, the main one is Beuran Creek located 19 meters above sea level.
The town has a relatively small area of woodland of 38 hectares. This area is particularly sensitive and is of remarkable biological interest. In 1991 this area was included to the inventory of Natural Areas of Ecological Interest, Fauna and Flora (ZNIEFF).
Saint-Laurent-des-Combes is part of the Jurisdiction of Saint-Emilion, which was listed as a World Heritage by UNESCO as a "cultural landscape". The landscape of hills and valleys succeeding, and its harmonious combination fully justifies this registration. Hiking trails allow visitors to discover the landscapes of vineyards, woods and rural heritage.
Throughout its territory, Saint-Laurent-des-Combes can produce wines from several appellations of Bordeaux, such as Bordeaux and Bordeaux Supérieur. But above all, its vineyard is in the territory of the Jurisdiction of Saint-Emilion, on which the appellations AOC Saint-Emilion and Saint-Emilion Grand Cru are mainly produced. Several of its wineries are part of the circle of Grands Cru Classés and Premiers Grands Cru Classés Saint-Emilion.
More information about the vineyard of Saint-Emilion, here.
Points of interest:
The view from the Chuch square over the Dordogne Valley.
Several bicycles and hiking routes were made by the Tourist Office of the Greater Saint-Emilion Area through Saint-Laurent-des-Combes:
Hiking - UNESCO valley and hills
Cycling - The Dordogne Valley and its vineyards
Cycling - Remarkable architectures
Cycling - Between vineyards and the Dordogne
The routes can be downloaded here.
Monday / Tuesday / Thursday / Friday: 9:00 am to 12:30 pm / 2: 00 pm to 6:00 pm