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Half-day and Full Day hiking tours in the Verdon Gorge
Europe’s Grand Canyon 

 

 

The Imbut trail: what a scenic hike in the Verdon Gorge!
Half-day or Full day

 

In the midst of Provence hinterland, equidistant from Marseille and Nice, the Verdon Gorge (Gorges du Verdon) is the most grandiose canyon in Europe, offering several beautiful day hikes. Mostly following the river as close as possible, the Imbut trail offers spectacular views of the Verdon river’s colored waters, either turquoise or emerald. Your local hiking guide will take you down to the bottom of the gorge during the first section of the walk. The next hour, alongside the river, will bring you the sensation of pure joy. Some stretches of the second half of the Imbut trail may be challenging for inexperienced hikers. But, as our route is a return trip, we can decide the moment when we start retracing our steps.

 

Walking time : from 3 to 4.5 hours (round trip)
Rating : from moderate to challenging
Season calendar : 1/1 – 6/30  &  9/1 – 12/31

 

 

 

 Pretty Basses Gorges du Verdon
Half-day

 

Though a little bit less dramatic than the Grand Canyon of Verdon, which is located 15 miles upstream, the site of Basses Gorges du Verdon (the Lower Verdon Gorge) offers no less wild and beautiful landscapes. And its access is easier : only a good hour drive from Aix-en-Provence.
All along the trail, under the leadership of your local guide, you can enjoy a lot of superb views over the emerald waters of the river : this splendid route, running alongside the river thanks to footbridges and passages carved in the rock, leads to the Chapel of Sainte-Maxime that stands up on a rocky spur overlooking the gorge.
A really lovely walk in the heart of Haute Provence.


Walking time
: 3 hours
Rating : leisurely
Season calendar : year-round (summer : 9am – 12am only)

 

 

 

 

The Blanc-Martel trail in the Verdon Gorge
Full Day

 

Sentier Blanc-Martel (the Blanc-Martel trail) is the most prestigious hiking route among all those running through the Verdon Gorge and one of France’s most popular ones. That’s probably because it descends from the rim of the canyon 300 meters (1,000 feet) down the deepest gorge, offering hikers the chance to discover the bed of the river for more than 5 hours.

Staying at the bottom of the canyon during most of the walk, the trail follows the Verdon river very closely, providing beautiful views of the emerald-green waters, contrasting with the grey rocks, especially in the narrows. Throughout this fabulous hike, you will discover an amazing biodiversity, that your local guide will be glad to tell you about, from the most common to the rarest species of wildflowers. You will also probably have many opportunities to observe several of the 400 large griffon vultures nesting in the Gorges du Verdon, a species from which several dozens of individuals were reintroduced between 1999 and 2005.

A must for someone walking in Provence !

 

Walking time : 6 hours
Rating : difficult
Season calendar : 1/1 – 6/30  &  9/1 – 12/31

 

 

 

As the Grand Canyon of Verdon is located right in the middle of Provence hinterland, its two major hiking trails, the Imbut and the Blanc-Martel, can be considered as attractive day trips both from the cities of the French Riviera, Nice and Cannes (a 2.5 hour drive) and from those of Western Provence, Aix and Marseille (2 hours).