The Auvergne Volcanoes Regional Natural Park is a French regional natural park created on October 25, 1977. It is located in the heart of the Massif Central, in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes administrative region. Covering an area of 389,733 ha, it is the largest regional natural park in mainland France. Forming a landscape, geological and heritage ensemble, the regional natural park includes the Puys chain (puy de Dôme 1 465 m), listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2018, the Dore mountains (Puy de Sancy 1 886 m), Artense (granitic plateau 800m), Cézallier (signal du Luguet 1 551 m)and Cantal mountains (Plomb du Cantal 1 855 m).
The Cantal massif is a single, very old volcanic edifice (between three million years and two hundred and fifty thousand years) 150 km around, eroded by twelve or thirteen glacial valleys which converge towards its three main peaks: the Puy Griou, the Puy Mary and the Plomb du Cantal. It is a land of thermal springs and lakes. Man has worked tirelessly to shape his living environment, graze infertile slopes and build villages, castles, burons and Roman churches with lava.
Very different in appearance, the panorama of the Puys range spreads out a flurry of cones and often wooded domes. In total about 80 volcanoes of more recent origin (between twelve thousand and seven thousand years).