Cut into the southern edge of the Massif Central, the Cévennes National Park has been spared from the hubbub of the major axes of communication. Its terrain of low and medium-sized mountains has long been a reference point for those who, in order to live happily, lived hidden. A refuge far from the everyday world and modern lifestyles that promises authenticity and tranquillity to those who tread its tracks and byways.
Are you tired of crowds and busy highways? Weary of consuming without reason or limit? And what if you went off the beaten track to explore the unsuspected treasures of the Cévennes National Park? Little known or relatively unvisited, in their unexpected nooks and crannies, these rolling landscapes have surprising stories to relate. Their geological characteristics for a long time made them the ideal destination of people in search of refuge. But in these natural surroundings you will find much more than just a hiding place: expect tranquillity, beauty and authenticity all the time, including off-season when the landscapes metamorphose.
In search of authenticity and generosity
Here, tourism is eco-responsible and local. It goes far beyond mere mercantile transaction: it is driven by authenticity, respect for the environment, sharing and exchange with local inhabitants. A spirit of simplicity and generosity that adds to the charms of the landscapes.
Will you be able to open your eyes and ears to receive with respect and wonder the natural treasures of the Cévennes, hidden in the hollows of a deep valley or the bed of a river?
Plaine du Tarn, land of transhumance
Visit a land that is emblematic of mixed farming, charged with stories of transhumance. There is a unique atmosphere that reigns in the Plaine du Tarn, scattered with authentic little granite hamlets. By turn, you travel through meadows, heaths, woods, peat bogs and high-altitude grasslands visited by transhumant herds. You cross the Tarn, which rises nearby. There is Mas Camargue, an immense farm mentioned as early as the 15th century, nowadays the starting point for a nature trail.
Treasure trail in the Bonheur Valley
This long valley winds between a grazed hillside and a forest. Many streams water the grasslands, flower-covered in all seasons, where cows and sheep graze. The Bonheur disappears under the Camprieu Plateau and then re-emerges, in the form of a waterfall, at the foot of an impressive abyss. Along with other well-kept secrets, the valley is home to the ruins of the Bonheur Abbey, an 18th century forest and the portrait of Georges Fabre. And look to the sky to watch the aerobatics of a Goldcrest.
Follow the Champernal ravine
In this plunging ravine dominated by an impressive viaduct, for centuries human activities have combined with the vagaries of the Mediterranean climate to give rise to an astonishing ecosystem. Between the profusion of nature in perpetual evolution and the peace and quiet of the remains of the past, follow the trail to discover this secret place by way of the river, footbridge, terraces, old railway line and viaduct.