The Forges de Pyrène - the unforgettable village - is a theme park dedicated to the trades of yesteryear and the life of yesteryear. Near to Foix, this site is located in a wooded park, bordered by a pretty river. This reconstituted village - with its tavern, bread oven and classroom - offers us a real immersion in the 1900s. As for themuseum space, it brings together more than 5000 tools, from the plumb line of the carpenter to the paroir of the clog maker, including the hawker's marmot.
There is a lot to see and do there. Suddenly, I decided to share with you my most big shots ❤️. Come on, follow me ...
The martinet forge, the beating heart of the site
If this tourist site has been installed at this precise location, It is not a coincidence. Indeed, since the Middle Ages, the place has housed a martinet forge. This large hammer operated by a water mill is one of the very last in activity in France. This ancient cutting plant (tool factory), closed in 1985, is also listed as a Historic Monument. It is there, in his original building, in a dark and damp atmosphere, that Philippe says "Zézé" - historian-blacksmith - tames this iron juggernaut under our astonished eyes.
Nearby, the museum, completely renovated, traces the great epic of iron in Ariège, discovering the tools and the evolution of techniques over the centuries.
Good plan: Ideal to see before the demonstration of the martinet forge.
Lively and fascinating workshops
The craftsmen-animators bring back before our eyes the gestures of yesteryear of the clog maker, the basket maker, the furnace - the one who managed the communal oven -, the blacksmith or even the gold miner - the gold digger. These workshops take place throughout the day, at a fixed time - the detailed schedule will be given to you at the entrance.
I chose to tell you about my favorite workshop, that of the school 1900. You are immediately in the mood by sitting down at one of these old wooden desks. The master greets us with a somewhat stern air and the moral lesson of the day is written on the large blackboard. It smells of chalk and cool ink.
The facilitator plays the schoolmaster and we play the students! Let's go for the pen writing lesson. Each takes his pen holder and applies himself to make the most beautiful "full and loose". With a little concentration you might just get your good point!
Located right at the entrance to the site, the restaurant Ô Bistrot Pyrène. There is no menu here, but daily menus made with seasonal and local products… all in a modern and warm setting. The chef is committed to promoting Ariège gastronomy and supporting local producers.
Book a table
Emotions guaranteed at the Ages of life
It is a very amazing experience which is offered to the "Ages of Life". This moving scenography takes you in the footsteps of Baptistou, 85, who tells his life story to Marion his granddaughter. You progress in a semi-darkness from room to room, rocked by the voice of this grandfather (recorded by Olivier De Robert, famous storyteller from Ariège) who recalls his life journey.
From his childhood to his marriage, including the evocation of the 14-18 war, it is also daily life in the villages of Ariège in the last century that unfolds before our eyes.
Very touching ! ❤️
Ages of life
If the Forges de Pyrène were a song, they would be "My lover of St Jean".
If the Forges de Pyrène were an odor, they would be that of bread fresh out of the wood-fired oven.
If the Forges de Pyrène were a sound, they would be the "tam tam" of the martinet that hits the hot iron.
If the Forges de Pyrene were a metal, they would be gold flakes collected with perseverance by the gold miner.
My tips & practical tips
- Il you have to plan the whole day to enjoy all the entertainment or at least count half a day so as not to leave frustrated.
- When you visit with children, you can alternate times of discovery (workshops, museum of old tools, etc.) and moments of "letting go" (playground, visits to farm animals, discovery trail, old games, etc.) etc.).
- The majority of workshops are covered and operate even in bad weather. In addition, three spaces for visits are inside: the ages of life, the iron museum and the museum of old trades.
- Dogs are not allowed on the site but a shaded and free kennel is available.
The wooded park The small animals of the Forges de Pyrène