The Puy de Dôme is a lava dome about six kilometers west of Royat and ten kilometers away from the French town of Clermont-Ferrand. It is one of the youngest volcanoes in the Chaîne des Puys region, and dominates the horizon of Clermont-Ferrand. In recent years, housing development have crept up the terraces, reaching higher and higher and sprawling from Clermont below the flank of the eastern mountain.
A Roman temple once stood at the summit of the dome. There is still a restaurant and observatory at the top, as well as a TV mast. While Clermont does provide some nice scenery and well-marked nature trails, don’t expect the Puy de Dome to be unspoiled by urban influences. The sounds of buzzards have long been drowned by the screech of tires being tested out at the Michelin tracks north of Clermont. The city’s livelihood, after all, depends on tire manufacturing.
Today, the Puy de Dôme volcano is one of the most visited attractions in Auvergne, France, and is visited by almost 500,000 tourists each year. There are two ways of reaching the summit – a pedestrian path and a six kilometer motor road that can be driven during slow seasons or bussed during peak seasons.
Marriott, Michael. The Dordogne. Wiltshire: Crowood Press, 1991. ISBN: 185223461X.
“Puy-de-Dôme (mountain).” < http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Puy-de-D%C3%B4me_(mountain)>
 Marriott, 86