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HIKING IN THE GARD: from the Cévennes to Camargue, Nîmes and the Pont du Gard...

Discover Camargue, explore the Cévennes, hike through the scrubland, along the Gardon River canyons, the Cèze River canyons. Walk in the footsteps of the Celtic tribes, the Romans, the resistant Huguenots. Gard county means more than 9,000 km of hiking itineraries that are all marked and well-maintained. Different kinds of hiking opportunities too – backpacking on your own or with a guide – there is something for everyone!




hikes-flowers

Several guides describe the hikes in Gard county:

  • LE GARD A PIED (The Gard on Foot) describes 53 different well-marked loop walks and hikes to discover the rich heritage throughout the Gard. This map-guide is in the national FFRandonnée collection and lays out the itineraries against the backdrop of an IGN map. It gives hiking times, level of difficulty, accesses to the itineraries and things to see and do near the hike. The trails and nature activity sites on this map-guide meet the quality criteria of the label "Gard Pleine Nature", a commitment from the Gard General Council and its partners to understanding and preserving wilderness and to controlled development of wilderness activities.

  • « Espaces Naturels Gardois, the county collection of hiking and nature activity map-guides" :
    Each booklet provides simplified maps of the network of trails in the area under consideration. These itineraries are all accessible on foot and most can also be done on horseback or mountain bike. 100 to 300 km of marked trails plus all the sites nearby for nature sports. Discover ideas for day walks, for several-day itinerant hikes, explanatory panels and practical information…. Users can choose to follow any of the hikes or to put together their own “à la carte” hike from one or several of the map-guides in the collection. The networks of trails are inter-connected, which means that there are hundreds of possible combinations! The trails and nature activity sites on this map-guide meet the quality criteria of the label "Gard Pleine Nature", a commitment from the Gard General Council and its partners to understanding and preserving wilderness and to controlled development of wilderness activities.

  • «Autour du Parc National des Cévennes, the collection of hiking map-guides for the Cévennes »
    A collection of booklet-guides each with a dozen data sheets on loop hikes with information on hiking times, challenges, and interesting detail on the historical, natural and cultural heritage along the way. Lots of practical details on where to sleep, eat, shop etc …

  • «Sentiers historiques (Historical Trails), collection of Grande Randonnée hiking map-guides »
    If you are looking to backpack several days along hiking trails in unforgettable settings, in the footsteps of famous authors or ancestral pilgrimage trails, the Grande Randonnée trails in the Gard are for you. The Saint Guilhem de Désert trail, the Régordane trail, the Santiago de Compostela trail, the Grande Traversée du Gard… The different guides each describe the itinerary and help you prepare your journey: access to the trail, sources for supplies, reserving lodging, and lots of heritage information for the many discoveries you will make on your path …

Among our favourites: hiking with a donkey! Donkeys are the ideal companion for a family outing or for long-distance hikes. Donkeys adapt to your pace, and motivate the children! A donkey is sensitive, appealing and easy-going company. Hiking with a donkey is a tranquil adventure! On hikes lasting a half-day, a full day, weekend, several days or a week – go with a donkey. In the Gard there are several donkey farms – they can advise you and help you enjoy this sweet and useful hiking companion! You can hike on your own or with a guide. See the complete list of donkey farms. HERE.

PROFESSIONAL GUIDES :

If you are not used to hiking or simply prefer being with a professional guide, use a licensed professional guide for your hike. There are many hiking guides in the Gard. Check HERE.

Please tell us your comments on the hiking trails (poor marking, other…):
Your contact : Aurélie JENESTE

HIKING EVENTS THROUGHOUT THE YEAR :

In the Cévennes

  • The Hiking Festival in the Cévennes, FIRA : 2 dates each year, not to be missed. In the Spring, over the Ascension holiday weekend; in the Fall, over the All Saints’ holiday weekend. Lots of guided walks and hikes on the programme.

  • The Nature Festival : the perfect way to discover the Cévennes National Park

  • Cevennes Hiking Certificate :Hiking and mountain-biking circuits on one Sunday in May in a different part of the Cévennes, every year.


In and around Uzès

  • Avril en balade : one month of nature and cultural outings and events celebrating the natural and cultural heritage and the terroir.

  • The Aqueduct according to Rabelais : in April, an entire day of hiking with 6 gourmand stops along the way to discover the area around Uzès.

  • Octobre nature :an entire programme of stays and weekends to get moving before winter sets in !


In VIDOURLE CAMARGUE

  • Terroir and Seasons, very original get-togethers which feature specialties and local heritage: in the Spring “Talking about Terroir”, in summer “Unexpected Visits”, in winter, “Celebrating Olives”.


In the Cèze River Valley/ Côtes du Rhône

  • In May, do as you please : events and hikes looking at nature and architectural heritage.


And more…

  • County-wide Hiking Day : every 3rd weekend in October in a different part of the Gard, a festive hiking day for all ages.

  • Escapades Nature : April to _____ ’avril à, over 100 escapades, guided by environmental specialists.

Cycling in the Gard...

butterfly-flower-in-the-Gard

Gard county is also eminently explorable by bicycle. Great for family outings, for friends cycling together, there is truly something for everyone!
The map-guides in the collection Espaces Naturels Gardois proposes networks of paths accessible for mountain-bikers.
From North to South, the many sectors in the Gard are well-equipped and well-marked: Les Causses and Cirque de Navacelles, the Cèze River valley, around Uzès, the Gardon River canyons, Vidourle Valley, Camargue and the coast…

Greenways and cycling-discovery loops :
With the family or among friends, these itineraries are the total opportunity to get moving and enjoy a great time out of doors. Time to discover or rediscover the top-quality cycling developments and drink in the gorgeous Gard countryside…
Greenways are distinct itineraries reserved for non-motorised travel such as hiking, cycling, roller-skating, wheelchairs and other. Truly accessible to all !
See all the greenways in the Gard
The cycling-discovery loops are biking paths laid out on “shared” roads, selected for their low car traffic.
See all the cycling-discovery loops in the Gard

Outings for a half-day, whole day, weekend, several days or week – anything is possible ! Les Cycle renters and professional guides are on hand throughout the Gard. They can advise, recommend and help you with anything you need.

Horseback Riding in the Gard

horseback-riding-in-the-gard

Saddle up !
Out and about yes, but on the back of your favourite animal! Get away from it all with the family or friends who all share the same passion.
For independent riders, the map-guides in the Espaces Naturels Gardois collection propose networks of paths most of which are accessible to riders.

If you are not used to riding on your own or simply prefer being with a professional guide, the horseback touring centres and stables in the Gard propose new types of introduction to riding, with rides lasting ½ day, Why choose a guide? Because you will have top-quality organization, equipment, horses and itineraries adapted to your level.

Vidourle on horseback
From the Cévennes to the Mediterranean Sea, the Association Vidourle à Cheval is a network of professionals who have undertaken a committed quality approach, offering services for riders and their horses. They take care of the horses, know all the circuits, serve table d’hôtes meals, provide picnic baskets, transport baggage, provide safe parking and many other details. From 1 to 6 days and more – many solutions are possible branching out each day from the accommodations, or loop rides. www.vidourle-a-cheval.fr

Chevauchées du Sud
This association, Association du Tourisme Autour du Cheval et de l’Âne, brings together horse and donkey professionals who offer riding activities throughout the entire Languedoc Roussillon region. The branch of the association in the Gard includes riding professionals, horse and buggy providers, hikes with pack donkeys, equestrian performances, accommodations, ranches and other… www.chevauchees-du-sud.com

Among our favourites :
The Haras national in Uzès zès is a national horse-breeding centre, where there are events and information on French equestrian heritage. Open to the general public.
Horse and buggy rides take you at the gentle pace of the horse, and are a great way to discover authentic Gard. For the whole family ! Check out horse and buggy possibilities HERE

The Horse and Spur Museum is in the heart of the historical city centre in Beaucaire. This museum is an invitation to the world of horseback riding in all four corners of the world. The collection results from thirty-five years of traveling on all the continents. Collector René François has put together a genuine equestrian treasure which takes visitors to South America, deepest Africa, China, Japan and of course Europe.
www.beaucaire.fr/musee-du-cheval

Le Gard propose des parcours de randonnée de réputation internationale. C’est le cas notamment des Chemins de Saint-Jacques de Compostelle ou des Chemins de Régordane qui célèbrent à leur façon foi et tolérance. C’est vrai aussi pour les Chemins de Stevenson, qui rendent hommage à l’écrivain britannique inventeur en 1878 d’une sorte d’écotourisme lors de son Voyage avec un âne dans les Cévennes (qui est aussi un livre). Parmi les manifestations célébrant la randonnée, la plus fameuse est sans conteste le FIRA, Festival de la randonnée en Cévennes créé à Saint-Jean-du-Gard il y a plus de 40 ans. Il est utilement accompagné par des rendez-vous tels que Avril en balade, Octobre nature en Uzège, Le Brevet des randonneurs cévenols ou la Journée départementale de la randonnée.