Top French Cities - Clermont-Ferrand at a glance

Press release

For more information, visit the Clermont-Ferrand Tourism at

City region: Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes

Population & what they are called: 141,365 municipality inhabitants (2014 census), called Clermontois

Access from Paris:

  • by road: about 4 hours (263 miles) via the A10 and A71 autoroutes

  • by train: about 3 h 45 min by direct intercity train from the Gare de Bercy

  • by plane: 1 hour to Clermont-Ferrand Auvergne airport

Famous native daughters & sons:

  • André and Édouard Michelin, founders of Michelin

  • Audrey Tautou, actress

  • Aurélien Rougerie, international rugby player

Most distinctive and/or unique fact or trait (or little known fact):

  • One of the city's nicknames is "France's Liverpool" due its more than 800 artistic groups and the many music, theater and film festivals.

  • Just west of Clermont-Ferrand, the Puy-de-Dôme is the highest volcano in the the Chaine des Puys, a chain of 80 volcanoes located in an area more than 28 miles long and three miles wide.

Notable sites:

  • Place de Jaude – the city's most famous public square, with a large statue of Vercingetorix by Auguste Bartholdi, sculptor of the Statue of Liberty

  • Notre-Dame-de-l'Assomption Cathedral – built of black lava stone and crowning the hill in Clermont’s historic center

  • Notre-Dame-du-Port Basilica – 12th-century, Romanesque church included on UNESCO’s World Heritage List

Top annual events:

  • Festival du Court-Métrage de Clermont-Ferrand – one of the world's leading international festivals for short films (

  • Contre Plongées de l’Eté – summer festival of garden readings, circus acts, shows and screening (

  • Europavox Festival – the best in European music (

Most notable museums:

  • Musée d'Art Roger-Quilliot (MARQ) – the city's foremost cultural venue with six levels of art from the Middle Ages to contemporary times

  • Muséum Henri-Lecoq – a journey of discovery into the history of science and the region’s nature heritage

  • L’Aventure Michelin – an exhibition devoted to the Michelin Group’s past, present and future (

Culinary specialties:

  • cheese – the custom is to sample the Saint-Nectaire, Cantal, Salers, Fourme d'Ambert and Auvergne Bleu at Saint-Pierre Market or beneath Saint-Joseph Hall

  • truffade and aligot – two typical potato-and-cheese dishes best eaten in a little local restaurant

  • petit salé aux lentilles vertes du Puy – salted pork meat served with green lentils from Le Puy

Local wines & spirits:

  • Côtes d’Auvergne wine – vintages such as Boudes, Châteaugay, Corent, Chanturgue, Madargue and Saint-Pourçain (the last of which now has a protected name)

  • Chateldon and Volvic mineral waters – naturally sparkling mineral waters from the region (Chateldon is only served in the finest restaurants)


  • city center – the pedestrian zone of antique dealers and booksellers

  • fruit paste and jellies – Cruzilles ( is the last confectionary business remaining in Clermont-Ferrand, which has a confectionary history that goes back almost 800 years

  • knives – made in the nearby city of Thiers (

Most popular night spots:

  • Bell’s Australian’s Pub – a little piece of Down Under right in the center of town, next door to fnac at the Place de Jaude

  • Place de la Victoire, near the Cathedral – restaurants and bars with large terraces that are ideal places to watch ASM rugby team play

  • L’Appart – how about a glass of wine in the bathroom of this bar designed like an apartment?

Local population’s favorite activities (or hangouts):

  • Puy de Dôme – from the top (accessible via a cog railway) there are sensational views over the city and 80 inactive volcanoes

  • rugby match – become a one-day supporter of the local ASM Clermont-Auvergne Rugby team, French champion in 2017

  • learn about volcanoes – in a natural setting like the Volcans d’Auvergne Regional Natural Park or a theme park like Vulcania Park that invites discovery of the extraordinary tale of volcanoes

Local industries:

  • Michelin – the company headquarters are in the city, where manufacturing has given way to the Research, Development and Innovation Campus called Urbalad.

  • seeds – Limagrain, based in Auvergne, is the 4th largest seed company in the world

In Pop Culture:

  • The Sorrow and the Pity (Le Chagrin et la pitié) – Clermont-Ferrand is the basis for this two-part 1969 documentary by Marcel Ophüls about the collaboration between the Vichy government and Nazi Germany

  • My Night at Maud's (Ma nuit chez Maud) – a dramatic 1969 film by Éric Rohmer set and filmed in Clermont-Ferrand, the third in his series of Six Moral Tales.

Major 2018 developments:

  • 60th anniversary of the Circuit de Charade, a particularly challenging championship motorsport race track wrapped around the base of an extinct volcano.

  • The Festival du Court Métrage, an internationally renowned short film festival, is preparing to celebrate its 40th birthday.


Marion Fourestier
Atout France-The France Tourism Development Agency
New York, 10022
United States