Excursion 6: Gorge de Ardeche - a walk in a large canyon or a canoe trip

Take exit 19 - Bollene on the northbound motorway towards Lyon. It takes approx. 1.5 hours to drive up to the village of St Martin d'Ardeche from Cucuron, and we suggest to take morning coffees here. A natural starting point for the walk is from the large parking lot down by the river bank a little further up the river. Drive the less than 2 km. up to Sauze, just north of St. Martin on the D290. (See local map Gorges de l'Ardeche - 2939 OT).

This is quite a big river and this area is open during the summer. Fine swimming along the trail up along the river bank. Bring lunch packs and swimming gear. Return the same way.Those wishing canoe trips with a number of rapids could do so from one of the operators in the village. You will be transported by bus up the river and will return on your own by canoe back to Sauze. I have never tried it myself, but it's seems to be popular with young people. The rapids can be tough depending on the season.

The less energetic of you could do a tour of the canyon by car, along the road D290 northwest along the top of the canyon, with many viewpoints along the way. 

The return to Cucuron could easily include a visit to the famous wine town of Chateauneuf-du-Pape (exit 22 from the N7 motorway). The excursion could also be extended to a whole day outing by visiting and dining in Orange or Avignon in the evening.


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