Montluçon is a town that you wouldn’t be inclined to visit during the course of a normal Holiday to France. It’s one of the towns in the country that, along with Bourges and Moulins, vies for the title of the most central town in France.
Situated on the Cher River and with almost 80,000 inhabitants in its greater urban area, it’s a town that had its heyday in the latter part of the Industrial Revolution with heavy industry such as Dunlop (still present in the town). One of its more famous natives is actress Audrey Tautou.
It does, however, have Irish connections and the local IUT de Montluçon has an exchange relationship with Irish third-level institutions that started with Sligo RTC (as it was then known) in the mid-1980s. it also has a pretty historical centre that’s centred around its castle and mediaeval district sitting on a strategic height above the town.
The main market is the Saturday morning one in the afore-mentioned mediaeval centre. It runs from 08:00 to 13:00 (times can vary according to weather conditions) and the picturesque open-air market sells everything from locals foods (mostly) to a small amount of bric-a-brac.
Across the river in the area known as Ville Gozet, there are two markets: one is on every Sunday and Wednesday morning (08:00 to 13:00) while the other is in the non-descript industrial/supermarket zone immediately to the east on Rue Pablo Picasso in the car park of the Athanor community complex. This is a real farmers’ market with producers selling delicious Auvergnat specialities directly to the public. It runs from 16:30 to 19:30 every Friday.
There are a few more markets that are a little further out, serving the suburban communities (see Tootlafrance Market Guide Map for location), namely the Place Escadrille Normandie Market (Fridays 08:00 to 13:00), the Place Fonbouillant Market (Tuesdays 08:00 to 13:00) and the Place de la Fraternité Market (Thursdays 08:00 to 13:00) to the north of the town.
Tootlafrance Market Guide Map
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