The Puy de Sancy is the highest summit of Volcans d’Auvergne and the full Massif Central. For this reason it's the highest point of centre of France. In its hillsides are located two ski-resorts with a cable-way near of the summit making very popular this summit on summer but it exists another routes out of the tourists to enjoy this nice and important peak.
Note: the time is orientative but I didn't climb all the routes of course (I estimate the slope and distance to calculate it).
--Cable way: with stairs of wood to the summit, only for tourist. (20 min.)
--Pan de la Grange (col East): across the pistes of ski. It’s interesting if you want to climb Puy de Cacadogne as well or as route of descent of the next route. The route reachs the summit out of the people and the stairs but you must use the pistes. It's the route advisable on winter taking care with the skiers (1h 30 min).
--Col de la Courre (col West): a very nice valley entering from Val de la Courre near of Puy Redon walking the nice path of west ridge, but you must reach the summit across the stairs with a lot of people. It's a little exposed if the grass is wet in a day with rain or with snow (1h 30m).
--Puy de la Perdrix-Puy Ferrand: nice route following the path across Puy de la Perdrix and Puy Ferrand reaching col de la Cabanne across the line of ridge. (1h30m)
--Col de la Cabanne (col South East): you can reach directly the col across a path with a good option to climb Puy Gros from a small col before the main col. (1h20m)
-Col de la Croix St Robert
It's a longer route but it's nice and easy to follow across Roc de Cuzeau and Puy de Cacadogne to reach the col of Pan de la Grange. (3h?)
-Col de la Croix Morand
It's a very long route of 10 km across the line of summits of Puy de l’Angle descending to Col de la Croix St Robert following the previous route. It's an option to make a hike without return to trailhead. (4h?)
Clermont-Ferrand is an important city with highways from the main cities of France.
-North: A71 from Paris
-East: A72 from Lyon
-South: A20-A89 from Toulousse
-West: A89 from Bordeaux.
Le Mont-Dore: 46km from Clermont-Ferrand. D2089 and D983.
Super-Besse:54km from Clermont-Ferrand. It's the ski-resort of Besse-et-Saint-Anastaise. It's the same itinerary to Mont-Dore but after Murol you turn to D996 to Besse.
Col de la Croix Morand (1.401m) : at D996 in the route to Mont-Dore.
Col de la Croix St Robert (1.451m) : at C36 in an alternative road from Chambon to Mont-Dore.
The park of Volcans d’Auvergne has rules about wildlife, camping,… the most important to mountaineers and hikers is the respect to the paths. Walking out of path is forbidden. On the ski-resort you must be careful with the skiers on winter season.
CampingThe free-camping is forbidden.
You have a lot of lodges, campings and hotels in all the area around Le Mont-Dore. If you want to visit the Monts du Cantal in the same holidays maybe it's a good option the area around Issoire (less of 1h by car to both massifs) or Clermont-Ferrand.