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The heritage of Sologne

This is made up of the material and immaterial elements that are a testimony of a civilization, of its culture and its customs, and which are not classified as National heritage. Our region has physical marks of its traditions and rites. Each village in Loire and Sologne has live testimonies of its past.

A drive to discover the heritage of Sologne

A Guilly,

The meander of the Loire, which was classified World Heritage Site by UNESCO, is marked by a cross supposedly erected by Bibi the Mariner in 1812 as a way of thanks for being miraculously saved from a dreadful ice-jam.


At Neuvy-en-Sullias, an archeological treasure has been discovered. It is composed of Gallo-Roman bronze objects: a horse dedicated to  the god Radibus, three wild boars, an ox, a deer, statuettes, a long bronze horn and tools. This treasure can be seen at the Historical and Archeological Museum of Orleans, located in  the Hôtel Cabu.


Saint-Père-sur-Loire owns a cross erected on September 7th, 1835, in tribute to Saint Nicholas who is supposed to have walked across the Loire and landed where the cross is. The cross is aimed at preserving mariners from shipwrecking, and formerly people said that if you held it three times in your arms, you would marry that same year.

A Sully-sur-Loire,

At  Sully-sur-Loire, the mariners’ district around the church of Saint Germain shows the levels of the Loire floods on some houses, and the traditional architecture with anchors around the windows, as well as some Loire boundary marks.

A Saint-Aignan-le-Jaillard,

At Saint-Aignan-le-Jaillard, the remnants of the chapel of an old Benedictine priory, as well as some antique farm buildings bear witness to local religious and civilian architecture.


The heritage of Lion-en-Sullias dates back to the Neolithic age. Its tumulus in particular is still a source of interest for archaeologists and the “frog stone” is a megalith from the Neolithic times. Two castles bear witness to a more recent but nonetheless fascinating past, as the Château de la Ronce beside the Loire was a staying place for Voltaire whereas the Château de Cuissy gave shelter to Joan of Ark.


Let’s leave the Loire border and get to Viglain at the verge of Sologne. The entrance room of the town hall is host to the oldest bell in Loiret that was cast in 1403. Its wash-house reminds one of women’s gossips at the time when they washed clothes together at the heart of the villages.


Isdes is a charming village which offers a fine example of the architecture of Sologne. As  it was surrounded by forests, Sologne  favoured half-timbered houses for a long time, until the 19th century when brick kilns started to develop.


Villemurlin is the village of blue ladders. Numerous brick houses are decorated with blue ladders, thus perpetuating the local peculiarity of the beginning of the 20th century. The village Feast in September is the opportunity for villagers to show their inventive spirit in a decorated blus ladder competition, decking the streets.


Saint-Florent-le-Jeune is a village that used to belong to the diocese of Orléans in the 18th century. Saint Florent, who was the saint protector of drowning people, was at the origin of a popular pilgrimage. From its highest point at 160 metres at La Croix des Picots, the view over the landscapes of the Loire border is magnificent.


Cerdon-du-Loiret, which means “the place of springs” is situated on a Roman way between Orléans and Sancerre. Straddling the villages of Cerdon and Argent-sur-Sauldre, the Etang du Puits is a superb reservoir for the local fauna and flora. The 18th and 19th century half-timbered houses, the attic window with an oak weather board on the market place, the two typical wash-houses and the farm labourers’ houses are interesting elements of Sologne architecture to be discovered.

The “caquetoires”

Attached to the front of churches, the “caquetoires” or galleries gave cover to people who chattered before or after religious services. Our area  possesses a large variety of  “caquetoires”. Whether at Isdes , Lion-en-Sullias, Saint-Père-sur-Loire, Viglain or  Villemurlin, they all possess their own characteristics.