The waterfalls of Gimel are among the most beautiful natural sites of the Corrèze. Located 12 km northwest of Tulle, they are composed of three successive waterfalls of the river Montane, with a total height of 143 meters: the Grand Saut of 45m, the Redole of 38 m and the Queue de Cheval of 60 m.
This last one plunges into the "gouffre de l'inferno".
Abel Hugo, Victor Hugo's brother, was the first to describe these waterfalls in a book entitled "la France pittoresque" in 1883.
In front of the fantastic aspect of the scenery, many local legends were born, giving life to strange creatures, werewolves, goblins or fairies. The legends of Saint-Dumine, the local hermit, or of the lady of Gimel.
Numerous signposted itineraries follow the waterfalls in the Vuillier Park, named after the painter Gaston Vuillier who designed it between 1893 and 1899.
The area is listed as a Natura 2000 zone.
Open from 01/03 to 01/11, every day from 10 am to 7 pm in July-August and from 10 am to 6 pm outside this period (except Wednesday from 11 am to 6 pm). Paying (checks, credit cards and cash).
Please bring appropriate footwear to descend the slope leading to the waterfalls. Parents with young children can leave their strollers at the ticket office.
The village... and more...
This granite village is home to characterful residences, a mill and the 15th-century Saint-Pardoux church, which houses a veritable treasure: the reliquary shrine of Saint Etienne, in Limoges enamel.
Also of note is a 15th-century silver bust-reliquary of Saint Dumine.
The choir's 18th-century woodwork, restored in 2007/2008, with gold and faux marble, conceals wall paintings, discovered in 1997 and restored in 2006, depicting the Annunciation (16th century) on the right and the Holy Trinity (early 15th century) on the left.
The upper panels of the altarpiece are open for viewing during the summer months.
You can also admire a carved wooden celebrant's chair from the Louis XIII period, and a 17th-century polychrome wooden pulpit.
Also worth a visit is the early 18th-century Chapelle des pénitents, dedicated to Notre-Dame du Rosaire, and the church of St-Etienne de Braguse, founded on a promontory overlooking the Montane gorges by a hermit, Saint Dumine, during the reign of Clovis, and rebuilt in the 12th century. The present-day remains were restored in 1993.
Last but not least, don't forget to visit the medieval Château de la Roche Haute, partly destroyed during the Wars of Religion, whose remains have been illuminated all year round since 2006. The castle is the setting for a "Son et Lumière" show organized every year in July, with the help of around a hundred local volunteers who create the costumes.
A footpath links the château grounds to the left bank of the river, via a footbridge leading to the Pont des Cascades and the Pont du Péage.
Les Cascades de Gimel
Chalet les Cascades de Gimel,
Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator