Walking Holidays in France

Walking Holidays in France

Fresh air and peaceful countryside

Walking holidays in France

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All you need to carry are the bare essentials and you're not humping around a heavy load.

Dogs
Many of our walking customers consider taking their dog along with them. Small, well-behaved dogs are welcomed at many of our hotels. Read more at the foot of this page.

Any reasonably fit person can undertake our walking holidays in France with confidence. Our self guided walks give you the freedom to wander and explore at your own pace. You quickly establish your own rhythm and routine as you progress through your walking holiday.

For those looking to join a group guided walk we have single centre holidays in Savoie and the Auvergne which operate through both summer and winter. In winter you are loaned the necessary skis or raquette snow-shoes. A qualified guide escorts you each day.

France has both scenery and culture in abundance, and our walking holidays really do capture the essence of France. If you're interested in wine, châteaux, bygone times, rolling hills or dramatic coastlines, accompanied of course by some very pleasant walking, there'll be something in here for you.

Our Walking holidays in France

Tranquil Dordogne

Tranquil Dordogne

Mystical rivers and hidden valleys

An exciting landscape of green fertile valleys and dramatic cliffs dominated by the Dordogne river which meanders past vineyards, pretty villages and brooding castles. The walk is graded moderate as distances are longer with a few climbs rising 150m.

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Venture into the Vosges

Venture into the Vosges

Pagan walls and castles of Mont St Odile in Alsace

A picturesque hike on the slopes of Mount St Odile passing many old castles and the ancient Neolithic walls as you follow tracks on changing terrain of through woodland and vines.

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Château to Château

Château to Château

Famous names and hidden gems

An easy walk through the garden of France, along the limestone banks of the Loire. Turn inland through vineyards and flower-decked villages to take in some of the region’s enchanting châteaux. The grade is easy and navigation is simple and even the longest day has flat gradients.

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Dordogne Prestige à Pied

Dordogne Prestige à Pied

Spectacular Dordogne combined with special hotels

Spectacular views as the walk takes you through the splendid scenery of the Quercy Natural Park past rocky overhanging cliffs with wonderful views across the Dordogne River - graded a moderate walk as there are some steep sections.

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Volcanoes of the Auvergne

Volcanoes of the Auvergne

Wooded hills and lunar lakes

The dramatic landscape is full of contrasts: barren yet lush, rolling yet rocky. You’ll be walking on a whole range of surfaces, from narrow woodland tracks to country lanes. We grade this walk as moderate.

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Valleys of the Franche Comté

Valleys of the Franche Comté

Lush valleys and cultural heritage

Explore the lush valleys and brightly coloured villages of the Franche Comté. This is a relaxed and leisurely walk, winding through sun-dappled oak forests and lazy meandering rivers. This relatively unknown region boasts a remarkably rich cultural heritage, including the Vauban's Citadel at Besançon and the salt mines in Arc-et-Senans.

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Ch&acircteau Gardens and Abbeys

Château Gardens and Abbeys

Walk along the splendid River Loire from Tour to Saumur

A moderate walk from the regional capital of Tours to the fascinating riverside town of Saumur, taking in some of the regions best loved châteaux and gardens and a walk through the beautiful forest of Fontevraud to its Royal Abbey.

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Great War Walk

Great War Walk

Walk in the footsteps of the soldiers- World War 1

This Centenary walk throughthe Picardy countryside takes you to some of the most poignant sites of World War 1, enabling you to explore destroyed villages, the Dragon's Lair and to tread in the footsteps of the soldiers along the Chamin des Dames.

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Simply Amboise

Simply Amboise

Discover the charm of the Loire

The delightful old town of Amboise is the perfect base for discovering the charm of the Loire region, combine a mix of gentle cycling and walking with fascinating history, wonderful regional fare and classic wines.

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Simply Beaune

Simply Beaune

Blend sightseeing with a mix of cycling or walking through famous vineyards

Beaune offers an exceptional heritage and invites you to discover its monuments and museums. It is the perfect base from which to explore the Burgundian countryside. You can decide whether to cycle or walk through prestigious vineyards whose names make wine lovers' eyes sparkle!

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Simply Bordeaux

Simply Bordeaux

'The Capital of the good life'

Why not take a few days to explore Bordeaux on the Atlantic coast in South West France; a pilgrimage destination for foodies and wine lovers, wonderful restaurants, historic buildings and beautiful boulevards. The lovely cityscape is reflected in the great Garonne River. A vibrant and dynamic city with world class shopping, Bordeaux is vusually breathtaking with more than 350 buildings classified as historic monuments.

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Loire Prestige à Pied

Loire Prestige à Pied

Enchanting châteaux and picturesque villages

The Loire is renowned for its châteaux, and you have the chance to live like a king yourself as you walk from château to château. We grade this walk as easy, following pathways alongside the river and through vineyards, rewarded with gourmet food at the end of each day.

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Wine List Wanders

Wine List Wanders

Meandering from vineyard to vineyard

A 45 mile walk through a string of villages reading like a wine lover’s wish list, covering much of the Côtes de Beaune and Côtes de Nuits. A relatively flat region with just a few climbs, the walk is easy to moderate, passing through rolling vineyards.

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Burgundy Prestige à Pied

Burgundy Prestige à Pied

Rolling vineyards and ancient châteaux

A luxury holiday staying in prestigious hotels and converted châteaux. Walking is relatively easy to moderate along fairly even earth tracks and quiet lanes with vineyards all around. Undulating hills necessitate some short climbs but with compensating views!

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Classic Cognac à Pied

Classic Cognac à Pied

Discover the classic Cognacs of Charente

The walking is gentle following the River Charente as it meanders from Angoulême to Cognac through a peaceful landscape of vineyards. Plenty of opportunity to sample some of the great names of Cognac and complimentary tickets to visit Hennessy Cognac are included.

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Stevenson Trail 1st Stage

Stevenson Trail 1st Stage

In the footsteps of one man and his donkey

In 1878, Robert Louis Stevenson published, “Travels with a Donkey”, an account of his intriguing journey accompanied by his donkey, Modestine. Starting at the southern end of the Massif Central, the walk takes you across the Cévennes to the edge of the Midi.

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Stevenson Trail 2nd Stage

Stevenson Trail 2nd Stage

Follow the Pilgrims Way, perhaps combining both stages (13 nights)

The walk is moderate, with a few long climbs. Conditions underfoot are good, well drained, though often rocky. The landscape is ever-changing, tiny villages, valleys and woodland give way to desolate boulder-strewn plains.

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Untamed Cévennes

Untamed Cévennes

Dramatic landscapes and remote beauty

The rugged Cévennes offer stunning and dramatic scenery: steep tree covered slopes, cascading streams and remote granite strewn plains. This easy to navigate moderate walk allows you to experience the majestic beauty of the Cévennes without too much exertion.

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Secrets of Savoie

Secrets of Savoie

Group walking in the Alps

These holidays are available both summer and winter. Staying only twenty miles west of Mont Blanc, you can be sure of some stunning views and a genuine experience of Alpine life. The grades are selected to suit the group.

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Catalan Coast

Catalan Coast

Rocky coves and orange groves

Frontier battles gave way long ago to the simple fishing and agriculture which prevail today. An easy walk becoming moderate in places with several steep climbs. There is little shade from the Mediterranean sun, so bring a sunhat. Stunning views, friendly people and unique culture.

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Cathar Castles 1st Stage

Cathar Castles 1st Stage

Trek of the Cathar Castles from Tuchan-Quéribus to Quillan

Trek through the foothills of the Pyrenees past mystical Cathar Castles, through beautiful and changing landscapes from craggy rocks to lush green meadows. You stay half-board in friendly chambre d’hôtes and small hotels where you’ll discover local cuisine and Languedoc wines.

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Cathar Castles 2nd Stage

Cathar Castles 2nd Stage

Continue from Quillan to Foix via Montségur, perhaps combine both stages (12 nights)

Discover the unique history, wonderful food and wine of this fascinating region, and gorgeous scenery of meadows, vineyards, and distant snowcapped peaks. Follow ancient trails to discover precariously perched ruins of Cathar castles and stay in small unspoilt Pyrenean towns and villages.

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Van Gogh’s Provence

Van Gogh’s Provence

Shimmering light and olive groves

Wonderful buildings, charming village squares, the smell of herbs growing wild under your feet, all the right ingredients for some great walking along quiet lanes and stony tracks. The grade is moderate because the distances are longer than usual.

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Provence Prestige à Pied

Provence Prestige à Pied

Scented pines and dazzling skies

Charming accommodation that adds a touch of luxury to the delights of walking in Provence. Wander through pretty village squares, past vineyards and fields of sunflowers, over remote hill sides and along canal towpaths with the smell of wild herbs in the air. The grade is moderate.

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Captivating Corsica

Captivating Corsica

Trekking on an untouched island simply waiting to be discovered

This trek combines dramatic scenery with natural beauty: rugged cliffs, scented pine forests, crystal waterfalls and deep gorges. The ancient mule track will guide you through pretty mountain villages to the turquoise waters of the western coast. Moderate with some more strenuous sections.

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Breathtaking Brittany

Breathtaking Brittany

Celtic crosses and rocky inlets

This south-western tip of Brittany stretches into the waters of the Atlantic. Sandy dunes and marshes give way to dramatic cliffs as you approach the stunning Pointe du Raz headland. Walking around 7 hours each day mainly along coastal paths with the odd climb, this walk is graded moderate.

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Simply the Opal Coast

Simply the Opal Coast

The wind in your hair and wonderful views

This is a perfect introduction to experiencing walking in France: a picturesque seaside town, sandy beaches, undulating hills and plains with stupendous views. Justa 12 mile drive from Calais and you are in Wissant and ready to chek in to your delightful chambre d'hote.

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Simply Vence

Simply Vence

Discover the inspiring beauty of Vence and its artists

Many artists have adored Vence, St Paul de Vence and Nice. This truly is classic Provence and as you follow in the footsteps of Matisse, Chagall, Renoir and Dufy, you will understand the magic of this special place. “When I realised I would see that light every morning, I could not believe my good fortune”.

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Picardy Pastures

Picardy Pastures

Ancient towns and rural idylls

The medieval town of Laon offers panoramic views of the peaceful greenery and woodland that make for pleasant and undemanding walking through gently rolling countryside. The grade is easy, with short distances between hotels.

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Mulberry March

Mulberry March

Peaceful villages and evocative memorials

A pleasant walk across flat countryside following the route taken by the British 5th Division - through the pretty seaside town of Arromanches famous for the Mulberry harbour used for landing troops and vehicles during the war. We grade this walk as easy.

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Seine Valley Secrets

Seine Valley Secrets

Ancient woodland and ruined abbeys

One or two steep sections to negotiate each day as you rise from the river valley, taking in forest tracks through glorious woodland, towpaths along the slow moving Seine and quiet lanes leading past romantic ruined abbeys. The route is way-marked almost throughout its length.

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Discovering The Allier

Discovering The Allier

Faces of the Allier River

A series of walks through deep gorges and along high plateaux past tumbling rivers and ancient abbeys. Look out for huge birds of prey including the Golden Eagle. Finally transfer to Vichy for your final night along the Allier.

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Cantal Capers

Cantal Capers

Chains of green volcanic ridges

A veritable hiker’s dream; la Chaîne des Puys in the regional natural park of the Volcans d’Auvergne, is an area of breathtaking beauty. From rocky peaks to green valleys walking along ancient paths that can only be reached on foot, experience the finest Cantal walks and landscapes.

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Pyrenean Donkey Trek

Pyrenean Donkey Trek

Wild trails and mountain grandeur

A series of walks following remote paths in the Pyrenees in a small group of 6 to 14 with an experienced guide. Immersed in spectacular views and mountain lakes, track bears, marmots and chamois. Overnight in mountain refuges, your donkey carries your bag. Daily distances vary according weather and group variations.

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Secrets of Luberon

Secrets of Luberon

Canyons, forests and lavender fields

Discover some of the secrets of the Luberon mountains where medieval villages encircle their protective castles, where hidden trails pass alongside stone farmhouses and where wild flowers carpet the thyme-laden hills.

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Snows of the Savoie

Snows of the Savoie

Snowshoeing in the Alps

Discover a winter wonderland! This guided walk on snow-shoes will let you take in the magic, serenity and breathtaking views of the snow covered Alps.

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Pyrenean Winter Walks

Pyrenean Winter Walks

Group snowshoeing in the Pyrenees

This holiday is a must for lovers of the outdoors, mountains and snow filled landscapes. Snowshoeing will allow you to discover cols, valleys and summits others can’t access.

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Jura Jaunts

Jura Jaunts

Cross country skiing in the Jura

Sandwiched between the Vosges to the North and the Alps to the South, the Jura range is an ideal mountain holiday destination, far from the bustle and stress of city life. This fully inclusive seven day holiday is a perfect introduction to cross country skiing. .

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Venture into the Wintery Vosges

Venture into the Wintery Vosges

Winter walking along pagan walls and past the castles of Mont St Odile in Alsace

Capture the beauty and serenity of the Vosges in wintertime, as you walk on the picturesque slopes of Mount St Odile, passing many old castles and ancient Neolithic walls as you follow tracks on changing terrain through woodland and vines.

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Sparkling Champagne

Sparkling Champagne

Bubbly sensations, gourmet restaurants

Drinking Champagne in Epernay is like listening to Mozart in Salzburg! To celebrate your visit to Champagne in the manner it deserves we have chosen a mix of 3 and 4 star hotels of character and charm with fine foods. With just a few short climbs - the walk is moderate.

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Grands Vins de Bordeaux à Pied

Grands Vins de Bordeaux à Pied

A must for wine lovers

A leisurely walk through prestigious vineyards, starting with the reds of St Emilion, followed by the dry whites of Entre-Deux-Mers and concluding with the sweet Sauternes - plenty of tasting opportunities en route and a chance to restock your cellar with some of France's best wines. Santé!

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Morbihan Islands Walk

Morbihan Islands Walk

A dreamy mélange of sea, sky and Breton terrain

The Gulf of Morbihan, features a scattering of islands waiting to be discovered, the two largest being the Ile aux Moines and Ile d’Arz. The cross-shaped Ile aux Moines offers scenic walks around its 4 miles of coast, while Arz has lovely creeks and coves for an enjoyable dip in the sea.

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Mâcon Prestige Walk

Mâcon Prestige Walk

From vineyard to vineyard

Prestigious vineyards and imposing châteaux are waiting to be discovered along this moderately easy walk in Southern Burgundy. A dégustation de vin en route each day and accommodation in the most beautiful châteaux hotels and demeures de charme will ensure an unforgettable experience

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Luberon Prestige à Pied

Luberon Prestige à Pied

Hidden trails, thyme laden hills and lavender fields

This delightful walk takes your along hidden trails where medieval villages cluster around their protective castles, follow hidden trail where wildflowers carpet the thyme-laden hills and stay in some of the most prestigious accommodation in this beautiful region..

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Golden Islands

Golden Islands

Pristine coastline and untouched islands

The Côte d’Azur, boasts some of the most untamed coastline along the Mediterranean, and the island of Port Cros is a paradise of cork oaks and walking paths. Based in the towns of Villefranche sur Mer and Le Lavandou, you will experience the best of the Côte d’Azur

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Walking holiday Grades

EASY - 4 to 6 hours
Between 6 and 12 miles per day on undulating terrain over tracks with easy inclines which are rarely steep.

MODERATE - 5 to 7 hours
More noticeable hills, up to 14 miles per day, sometimes rough underfoot and some steep ascents with up to 750m change in altitude.

MORE CHALLENGING TREKS - 6 to 8 Hours
May require a little more stamina and experience with distances of up to 16 miles and up to 1000m change in altitude. These Treks, and in particular the Pyrenees, inevitably require a head for heights, good map-reading skills and a sense of adventure. In remote areas there are occasional nights in more basic accommodation.

Dogs

Many of our walking customers consider taking their dog along with them. Small, well-behaved dogs are welcomed at many of our hotels and in particular, the following holidays lend themselves very well to bringing Rover along:

We have a wonderful blog from the lovely Lucy who took her owners to Burgundy:
http://blog.bellefrance.co.uk/lucys-holiday-diary-by-lucy-aged-4/

Want to know more?

Why not give us a call and we'll help you pick a holiday that suits you.

 
 
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