People per Guide
Apr, May, Jun, Sep, Oct, Nov
Type of Trip
The Verdon Gorge (Gorges du Verdon) is an impressive 25-kilometer long and 700-meter deep, narrow limestone canyon located in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region, in the southeast of France. It was formed by the 166-kilometer long Verdon River, which flows southwest between the departments of the Var and the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, blending the Mediterranean and alpine ecosystems.
Protected by the Verdon Natural Regional Park (180,000ha), the Verdon Gorge is one of the most scenic river valleys in Europe. The brilliant turquoise-green narrow Verdon River runs between massive, high limestone walls, creating a stunning colourful contrast. The canyon was formed over millions of years, when the river, flowing down the snowy Alps peaks, carved the hills and created the deepest gorge in the country.
Considered “France’s Grand Canyon”, the Verdon Gorge is one of the must-see natural attractions of Provence. Just 2 to 3 hours away from the main cities in the French Riviera (also known as Côte d’Azur or Blue Coast), the gorge is a top touristic destination, especially during the summer.
Our tour’s meeting point will be the village of Rougon, at the heart of the Verdon Gorge. We will take the Blanc-Martel trail (Sentier Blanc-Martel), one of the most popular hiking routes in France, named after the two explorers who discovered the area in 1905, traveling on wooden canoes. The track runs 15 kilometers along the right side of the river, offering probably the most impressive gorge views in Europe. We will trek along ancient oak trees and 1,000-meter (3,000ft) limestone cliffs, where we will glimpse the tiny silhouettes of climbers, as well as griffon vultures soaring over natural thermal baths.
The trail features quite varied and challenging terrain, with good climbs and steep – although short – descents, and a final stretch that requires climbing some ladders and a steel staircase. We will trek for about 5 hours, with a total 450-meter (1,480ft) ascent.
If you suffer from vertigo or would prefer an easier hiking option, we can take the Pecheur Trail (which means the Fishermen Trail). This loop path will also take us along the right bank of the river, without having to climb any ladder or staircase. Along the way, we will visit some cave men ancient farms built close to some hot springs. The hike’s total duration is of 4 hours, involving also a 450-meter (1,480ft) ascent.
I usually hold this tour in April, May and early June, or then from September to mid-November, given that it is too hot during the summer. If you are looking for a summer outing, I recommend the hike in the Mercantour National Park and the Utelle village and southern French Mediterranean Alps day trek I also lead.
Don’t miss this fascinating hiking outing in one of Europe’s most unique natural sites! Send me your booking request now.
If you are looking for other similar activities in the area, check out the Saorge perched village trek and the Calern Plateau hike near Cannes and the French Riviera.
Price per person
- Guiding fee
What happens if I need to cancel the trip?
If you decide to cancel, you’ll get a 100% refund (minus fees) if the cancellation is notified up to 60 days before the start of the tour, a 75% refund (minus fees) if you cancel between 59 and 30 days before the start of the tour, and a 50% refund if you cancel between 29 and 21 days before the start of the tour. If you cancel less than 21 days before the first day of the tour, you won’t receive a refund.Take into account, however, that if accommodation, flights or transfers were included in the trip you booked, then a different policy may apply as the guide will be bound by the provider’s cancellation policy.
What happens if the guide cancels the trip because of bad weather/unsuitable conditions?
If bad weather or unsuitable conditions force the guide to cancel the trip, he or she will: a) propose a similar activity at a different place where conditions are better, or b) propose to postpone the activity until a later date, or c) cancel. If you refuse option a), our cancellation policy will apply. Please note, however, that the call to cancel a trip due to bad weather can only be made by the guide (not the client).
What happens if the guide doesn’t show up or cancels for personal reasons?
If the guide cancels for reason of injury or other, you will get a 100% refund on your trip.
I recommend staying in the villages of Rougon, Castellane, La Palud-sur-Verdon, or Moustiers-Sainte-Marie.
I can help you arrange transportation from Monte Carlo, Nice, Cannes or any other city in the French Riviera. If interested, please contact us for more information and rates, starting from €60).
• Light walking boots
• Breathable jacket
• Micro fleece and mountain t-shirts (if possible, avoid cotton t-shirts)
• Water bottle (1 liter per person)
• Sunscreen and sunglasses
About the Guide
I am a hiking guide (International Mountain Leader) working all over France (including Provence and the Alps), Italy and Portugal since 2001. I speak English very fluently as I often go to Taos Ski Valley (in New Mexico, USA where my family runs a great hotel and ski school) and I also go hiking in the American southwest.
I live mainly in Nice (French Riviera), but I also move all over the Alps working in different alpine valleys. I also often go to Martinique (French Caribbean island) where I enjoy rainforest and tropical hikes.
When I´m not guiding, I also work as a photographer and like to climb, ski, play tennis, or kitesurf on my spare time. I really enjoy botany and history as well.
I can guide you for a half day or for as many days as you like. I´ll take you to discover my French Riviera alpine region and the wild and large Mercantour National Park (counting 8 different valleys) nearby Nice, Monte Carlo and Cannes.
In my region, we can enjoy the Mediterranean landscape at sea level. As we move into higher altitudes, we will discover alpine lakes, larch or pine forests, orchids and alpine flowers, open meadows, spectacular medieval perched villages and old baroque chapels and churches, with great historic value.
We can also discover together the hiking hotspots in Provence, such as Calanques National Park, Verdon gorges, Sainte Victoire and the Var region, with highlights such as Saint Tropez.
I also love to hike in Italy in the very famous world heritage Cinque Terre (the amazing national park of the "Five Lands"), or in Liguria near San Remo.
And finally, I always enjoy taking my guests to the northern Alps: to Chamonix and Mont Blanc´s amazingly large panoramas or to the great Vanoise National Park, the largest in the heart of French Alps.
What People Say about this Trip
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