Gard (30210) Population: 1,482 Altitude: 98 m
Castillon-du-Gard is a picturesque Medieval village perched on a rocky hill just a few km northeast of the Pont du Gard aqueduct. The entire village is made from the ochre-yellow rock of the region, with 13th-century houses, vaulted passages, and cobblestone streets.
The village of Castillon-du-Gard is very pretty and definitely worth visiting, but it's rather more touristic than lived-in, and the lovely old houses are overly restored by their obviously wealthy owners.
There are many old streets for wandering, with beautiful Renaissance facades, stone arches and carved-stone window frames and doorways. It seemed to us to be a village on display, but it's a very nice display.
There's a minimal amount of commerce in the village, and all located in the center along the short, wide street called Place du Huit Mai. At the "top" of this street is an old café with the sign "CAFE", and no other name. It's a friendly place, and the terrace has a nice view down across the rest of the village center.
There's a large, covered lavoir (wash house) about 500 m south of the village, in the La Fontaine area, beside the D228 road. It's still in use, or at least in a usable state.
A small basin just outside, along the front side of the lavoir, was probably a drinking trough (abrouvoir) for animals.
The 12th-century Romanesque Chapelle Saint Caprais is located in the vineyards just below Castillon-du-Gard on the northwest side (off the D192 road to Vers-Pont-du-Gard). It's a simple building, with shallow buttresses, more of interest for its age than its beauty.
The Chapelle Saint Christophe is also a 12th-century Romanesque chapel. It's now in ruins, but it's still very impressive. The chapel ruins are located about 800 m southeast of the village, east of the D892 road that runs north-south on the east side of Castillon-du-Gard.
The Saint Christophe chapel was part of a fortified monastery, possibly from the 8th century. The remaining high walls of the side and the inner part of the apse give an impression of the lost grandeur of the chapel.
History of Castillon-du-Gard
First record, 1207 Castrum Castelione: meaning fortified place.
Prehistoric: Neolithic remains were found at the aven des Escaravassons in the northwestern part of the commune, where rock quarries are now located.
Gallo-Roman: Gallo-Roman remains were located at La Sarrasine. The southwest corner of the commune abuts the Roman quarry of Estel on the bank of the Gardon, a few hundred meters down river from the famous Pont du Gard Roman aqueduct.
Castillon belonged to the church of Uzès in 1211, and the domain was ruled by the provost of the Uzès cathedral.
The village suffered through the Wars of Religion It was captured by Protestants of Coligny in 1570, and in 1573 the Catholics of Damville took over. In May of 1575 the Protestants of Uzès to Castillon back again, until 1575 when the Catholics again took possession. In 1626 the Protestants of the Duke de Rohan recaptured it and dismantled the fortifications. The village walls were rebuilt in 1720.
Market day: Tue.
• GPS: 43.970383, 4.554576
IGN (1/25,000) #2941 OT "Uzès"
"Entre Rhône et Gardon", map+info (1:30'000)
At the Pont du Gard Roman aqueduct, the GR63 goes north-northeast, up through Castillon-du-Gard village, then east via St Hilaire-d'Ozilhan and Rochefort-du-Gard to Villeneuve-lès-Avignon, just across the river from Avigon.
There are several restaurants in Castillon-du-Gard, from nice to very nice.
Department 30, Gard Buses
- See Beyond's Gard Department Bus Schedules for Gard bus-lines maps and bus-line schedules (Horaires).
Maps (Plans) for the Gard bus lines are on the www.edgard.fr website, with a flash webpage for each of five zones around Nîmes (www.edgard-transport.fr/plan/?rub_code=5).
Schedules for the Gard bus lines are available via the www.edgard.fr website horaires page (www.edgard-transport.fr/horaires/?rub_code=23).