Fishing in the Cantal

Spread out over a single, extinct volcano, the Cantal region is one of plunging valleys, rolling hills and sparsely populated villages. It’s also criss-crossed with mountain streams and rivers containing excellent numbers of wild brown trout and grayling, plus scores of lakes where anglers will find plentiful pike, perch and zander. For the fly-fisherman, this is a special destination – a true wilderness with wily trout that will rarely have seen another angler’s fly, and the opportunity to spend days on the water without running into another person.
Rivers such as the Truyère, Santoire and Grand Rhue (to name but a few) are all home to thriving populations of wild brown trout, with excellent numbers of grayling present too. All you’ll need is a Carte de Peche and a spirit of adventure. First-time visitors would do well to call in at the Office de Tourism in Riom-es-Montagnes – it’s the only such office in the country with a dedicated welcome area for fishermen. Resident guide Guillaume Vernet is a mine of information, and will happily provide literature and maps for all the area’s top fisheries. See below for recommended accommodation and Cantal fishing guides.


Photos: Rory Batho


Recommended Cantal Fishing Guides

Cantal fishing guide: Guillaume VernetGuillaume Vernet – Riom-es-Montagnes, Cantal 

Cantal’s foremost fishing/tour guide. Specialises in trout and predator fishing, using both fly and spin techniques. Find out more


Recommended Cantal Accommodation

Cantal accommodation: Logis CoquelicotLogis Coquelicot – Riom-es-Montagnes, Cantal 

Five-bedroom B&B perched on a hill overlooking Riom-es-Montagnes. Dutch hosts Carin and Franck speak perfect English and are used to welcoming fishermen. Find out more

Cantal accommodation: Residence HauteclairResidence Hauteclair – Apchon, Cantal 

A 4-bedroom B&B in the heart of the Cantal’s rolling countryside. Belgian proprieter Ady Pinckers speaks fluent English and frequently hosts fishermen. Find out more

Lac du Roussillou, CantalLac du Roussillou – Riom-es-Montagnes, Cantal 

Five-acre lake bordered by 14 chalets available to rent by the night or week. The lake, which is fly-fishing only, is home to brown trout, rainbow trout and more. Find out more

More Info

Pays Gentiane Fishing BlogOfficial Pays Gentiane fishing blog  

Run by fishing guide, Guillaume Vernet, contains everything you need to know about fishing in the Pays Gentiane, Cantal – with handy English translations. Find out more

Cantal Fishing FederationCantal Fishing Federation  

Comprehensive information on fishing in the Cantal – includes maps, photo galleries, video, information about permits and lists of fishing guides in the area. Find out more

Auvergne TourismAuvergne Tourism (official site)  

The official website for tourism in the Auvergne – a great source of information for hotels, B&Bs, gites and campsites, along with info on activities in the area. Find out more

Carte de PecheCarte de Peche website 

A Carte de Peche (fishing permit) is required through France. They’re easily purchased in advance on this site – choose from weekly or annual options. Find out more