These magnificent hikes to do in the Pyrenees

Cirque de Gavarnie, Gorges du Ru d'Enfer, Lac Bleu d'Ilhéou... The natural sites of the Pyrenees are countless and spectacular. Here are five of the most beautiful hikes in this mountain range.

On the vertiginous paths of the Carança Gorges

In the natural region of the Conflent, the Carança Gorges are an easy eight-kilometre walk. Between monkey bridges, ladders and suspended footbridges, you hike along paths sometimes dug in the rock. This is particularly the case on the second route of the Carança Gorges which passes along the Corniche path. For those who would like to take the adventure further, the Carança lake can be reached in an average of two days' walking (with a hut as a stopover). 


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Mythical Cirque de Gavarnie

An emblematic natural cirque of the Pyrenees, the Cirque de Gavarnie is located on the northern side of the ridge line marking the border with Spain. It is in front of this natural site that this hike starts on the Bellevue plateau. Under the Taillon peak, you will walk through the Pouey Aspé valley. The environment is rocky and the ice is often present at this altitude. Once you have reached the Sarradets pass, you will arrive after about ten kilometers at the imposing refuge of the same name, which has been renovated in recent months and will welcome new visitors for its reopening in the summer of 2021.


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Between canyons and waterfalls in the Massif de Perdiguère

Short distance for this small 7.5 km loop hike, but almost 600 meters of ascent all the same. From the Bourdolés gorges, you head for the Cascade d'Enfer, the first place on your itinerary which will take you to several spectacular waterfalls. After the waterfall, you go to the Gouffre d'Enfer which you can admire from a promontory. Then comes the equally fascinating Gorges du Ru d'Enfer at an altitude of 1,600 metres (your highest point on this hike) and the Houradade torrent. After the Cascade du Coeur, the path takes you back to your starting point, the car park of the Gorges de Bourdolés.

From the fabulous Gorges de Galamus

Located halfway between the departments of Aude and Pyrénées-Orientales, the Gorges de Galamus surround the river Agly. About forty kilometres west of Perpignan, it is the spectacular starting point of this hike which takes you to the castle of Peyrepertuse. Built in the 13th century, this fortress overlooks the Corbières massif on a limestone ridge at an altitude of nearly 800 m, at the top of a hill that separates Duilhac from the village of Rouffiac-des-Corbières. It is also a famous spot for climbing. Finally, you finish your walk below at Duilhac-sous-Peyrepertuse.

On the GR10 at an altitude of over 2,000 metres

From the Mediterranean to the Atlantic (or in the opposite direction), the GR10 crosses all the Pyrenees and counts among the most popular in France. If you don't have the time and energy to do the whole trail, some stages are worth the detour. Among these, we recommend the 15 kilometres that separate two high altitude lakes, that of Estaing and that of Ilhéou, also called Lac Bleu. On the path, you pass at an altitude of 2,242 metres, at the Ilhéou pass after having swallowed a big difference in altitude of more than 1,000 metres. Once at the top, the path descends to the lake where the Ilhéou mountain refuge allows you to spend the night. It takes about five hours to complete this hike.