If you’re traveling through the Lot region in France and looking for a free or low budget friendly way to spend an enjoyable and relaxing day as a family, The Green Lake is the place to go!
Located outside the small village of Catus, the lake is accessible year round, but only open as such during the summer months. We went there in April, so off season still, which means that activities such as paddle boat rental weren’t available. This was no big deal though, as the majority of the activities at the lake are free and doable on your own.
We went for a walk around the lake (with a built in sequence of almost-wild-nature-exploration, as there are some rocks to climb and a small stream to cross at the far end of the lake) before pulling out our picnic basket and settling in on the lake shore, to enjoy a bit of homemade cake and some rugby ball throwing.
Swimming is supervised from June to September. We did see some signs that seemed to indicate that bathing outside of the opening season was not permitted, but I read otherwise on one of the tourist information websites, so I’m not sure what the deal is. At any rate – we weren’t planning on any full body immersion water fun, seeing that the water must have been around 10°C at the very most! As it turned out though, one of us did end up jumping in…..to retrieve a rugby ball gone astray. Oh, the drama. But all in good spirit. Just cold. Apparently. Very cold.
Around the lake there is a lot of green space, a basket ball court, a playground and I think there is a beach volley area in the summer as well. During the months of high season, there is also a snack bar and canoe rentals. We spent the entire afternoon there and will definitely keep it as a go-to option for day trips on future visits to the area.