- At a glance
- Locality & Walks
- Accommodation & Meals
- Travel options
Your Holiday at a Glance
|Independent Walking Holiday||
|Dates for 2020||
|Price 6 nights||
|Price 8 nights||
|Accommodation and Meals||
|What's not included||
The Vercors is a magical destination for a self-guided walking holiday, where gleaming vertical cliffs meet wild and desolate plateaux. Designated a French Regional Park, the Vercors in the French Alps is made up of large valleys, limestone plateaux, deep gorges and gigantic cliffs several hundred metres high. The main mountain summits are to be found on the eastern fringe of the range where the Grand Veymont reaches 2341 metres in height. Your 5 or 7 day walking trail traverses the Vercors, following these summits in the most scenic part of the Vercors. These summits give rise to some exciting trails and some amazing panoramic views of the alpine mountains. One of the most cherished views is that of Mont Aiguille, an awesome rock tower cast off from the main cliffs. In places, the walking paths follow what are known as balcony trails as they cut across the steep mountain sides offering great views all the way.
In addition, the mountains of the Vercors are home to a host of natural and man made wonders including extraordinary caves and waterfalls, natural wells and awesome gorges. In addition, the Vercors played an important part in the history of the French Resistance. Many of the villages and mountain passes saw bloody combat and loss of life, and today a number of memorials help to remember the war-time events.
The Vercors is a haven for wildlife with deer, wild boar, hares, chamois, marmottes and the famous alpine ibex (Bouquetin) roaming the upland slopes. As for the flora there are 80 protected species represented on these alpine crags and mountains.
More about the Vercors Regional Park and Nature Reserve
5 or 7 day's self-guided walking moving between guest houses. Walking per day amounts to an average of 6 - 7hrs (not including lunch stop) and 1,100m of ascent and descent. Maximum altitude gain in one day is 1,250m. The walks take place on paths, although they are mountainous and rocky in nature. You should have a good level of fitness and be comfortable with walking on mountainous terrain. You should also be sure-footed on mountain paths and have a good head for heights.
Holiday Profile day by day
Day 1: Arrival
Pick up from Monestier de Clermont train station and transfer to stunning hotel by Lake Monteynard Avignonet in eastern Vercors
Day 2: Treffart - Gresse en Vercors
Climb away from the lake to a viewpoint for superb views over the lake. Pass through the village of monestier before climbing to Pas du Serpaton from where you can extend the day by following the ridgeline to the north to the summit of Rocher du Cleton for your first overview of the Vercors. After, descend to the alpine village of Gresse en Vercors. +1100m, 20km, 7hrs
Day 3 & 4: Grand Veymont
Choice of 3 walks. Climb the highest peak in the Vercors, Grand Veymont at 2341m for fantastic 360 degree views including Mont Aiguille just below you or undertake a traverse of the famous balcony trail under the immense cliffs of the eastern edge of the Vercors plateau. Up to +1150m, 16km, 6hrs
Second day in Gresse en Vercors is optional
Day 5: Gresse en Vercors - Richardiere
Another fantastic day which passes ravines and rock towers before climbing a superb gorge to reach Pas de Bachassons. A small traverse of the plateau before descending to cross the gap between the cliffs and Mont Aiguille - a unique and memorable walking experience. There is an easier walking trail available on this day. +1050m, 22km, 7 hrs
Day 6: Richardiere - Nonniers
An enjoyable valley walk under giant cliffs before climbing onto the plateau - walk across the bizarre limestone plateau a chaotic landscape covered in pasture with wonderful wild flowers.There are spectacular views for much of the way of Mont Aiguille and the whole of the French Alps. Descend and follow the Combeau valley before a small climb to cross the Col de Cote Chevre before descending to the tiny village of Nonniers. 21km, +1000m, 6hr 30
Day 7: Cirque d'Archiane
From your hotel you can climb back up onto the plateau to view the amazing rock ampitheatre of Archiane from above or explore the cirque itself from below by following a path below the rock walls. Upto 17km, +800m. This day is optional.
Day 8: Nonniers - Grimone
Your final day's walking matches the high points of the previous walks as you climb through forest to emerge onto the Jiboui ridge. Follow this to the Col de Seysse before climbing onto another breathtaking ridge leading to the summit of Le Joucou at 2051m which dominates this area between the plateau to the west and the rocky mountains of the Devoluy to the east. Descend to the pretty hamlet of Grimone. +1250m, 18km, 7hrs
Day 9: Departure
Leave after breakfast and transfer to station at Lus-la-Croix-Haute (on same line as Monestier de Clermont).
Accommodation & Meals
You'll stay in a couple of charming 3 star hotels, one delightful small guest house on a historic farm and one 2 star hotel in a remote hamlet in the southern Vercors. Comfortable accommodation in great settings with a warm welcome and great cuisine. Full board accommodation.
|Hotel Le Chalet||Hotel||Small friendly 3 star hotel with swimming pool in a magnificent setting||3 stars|
|Hotel Chateau d'Herbelon||Hotel||Unique setting in a historic chateau with lovely grounds by the edge of lake Monteynard Avignonet||3 stars|
|Hotel Mont Barral||Hotel||Small 2 star hotel in the small village of Nonniers in the south of the Vercors||2 stars|
Short transfer from Monestier de Clermont train station to your hotel included in holiday price. Transfer to Lus-la-Croix-Haute train station at end of walking holiday included in holiday price. (on same train line as Monestier.)
London St Pancras to Lyon Part Dieu direct and changing at Paris or Lille. The journey takes about 6 hours. TER local trains run regularly to Grenoble. Occasionally TGV trains run direct to Grenoble. At Grenoble take a local TER train towards Veynes or Gap and alight at Monestier de Clermont.
The airlines Easy jet, Flybe and British Airways have scheduled flights from the UK - Luton, Gatwick, Birmingham, Edinburgh and Heathrow - to Lyon St Exupery airport. Limited number of direct TGV trains from the airport to Grenoble. Otherwise shuttle bus or tram to Lyon Part Dieu station and TER train to Grenoble. See above for trains to Monestier de Clermont
Please visit our travel shop for links to useful sites for reserving airport parking or booking train tickets
Note: Please check concerning the availability of a holiday before booking any flights or train tickets. If you need further information or would like to discuss any aspect of your travel arrangements, please contact us, we’re here to help you.
Channel crossings from Dover are provided by a number of operators including P&O Ferries, Eurotunnel and DFDS Seaways.
Once in France, the journey from Calais to the Vercors area takes about 9 hours (excluding long breaks).
Tolls amount to about 45 euros each way. Parking at first hotel subject to agreement at time of booking. Non-surveilled parking is available free of charge by the lake closeby.
Small supplement for the transfer from last guest house to pick up your car.