Bonneval Abbey was founded as a monastery of Cistercian monks in Le Cayrol, in the department of Aveyron (Occitania, France, Massif Central).

Bonneval Abbey was founded in 1147 by Cistercian monks from Mazan Abbey, in Rouergue. Its name means “good valley”, a typical Cistercian name. Bonneval quickly became a rich and powerful abbey, owning extensive estates throughout the country.

During the French Revolution, in 1791, the 13 remaining monks had to leave. The abbey and its goods were sold off, and the buildings subsequently quarried for stone.

In 1875, Trappist nuns came to rebuild the abbey. They also opened a chocolate factory, and installed a turbine on the river to produce electricity. In 1902, they founded what is now known as Bon-Conseil Abbey, in Quebec, Canada.

Today, the community at Bonneval consists of 30 nuns, aged from 29 to 98. They still produce a well-known chocolate, but above all they endeavour to fulfill their vocation of prayer.

Address: Rte de l’Abbaye de Bonneval, 12500 Le Cayrol, France.

How to get to?

From Paris: 7 hr 13 min (580 km) via A77

From Toulouse: 2 hr 18 min (186 km) via A68 and N88

From Andorra: 4 hr 34 min (364 km) via N88

From Barcelona: 5 hr 7 min (479 km) via AP-7 and A75

From Madrid: 10 hr 14 min (898 km) via A-2

See here Pyrenees travel guide

See here France travel guide

See here Spain travel guide

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