Pézènes-les-Mines, not to be confused with Pezenas, is a charming village which can hardly have changed in hundreds of years. Walking around it, you are struck by how tranquil the surroundings are, with just the song of birds in the trees and the babbling of the little River Peyne. The area has been settled since Neolithic times and the Romans left their mark here too, but Pézène's heyday was in the 19th century when it earnt its full title of "Les Mines". The area around the village is rich in geology and the local inhabitants mined bauxite, the base rock from which aluminium is extracted. In the Second World War, the Germans also mined the bauxite for their aero industry. The mines have long been abandoned but the presence of bauxite and many other minerals is revealed by the rich red and oranges of the rocks hereabouts.
Pézènes-les-Mines is a paradise for those who wish to spend their holidays amongst the wildlife, flora and fauna of the Midi but away from the more touristy areas near the coast.