Cerdagne, Pyrenees, France

INDEPENDENT WALKING HOLIDAY

 

Cerdagne Explorer: Lakes, Mountains and Hot Springs

grade moderate guided walking jura+

6 nights - £575/€630 - 6 days independent walking holiday moving between guest houses

The Cerdagne is a picturesque plateau, lying at 6000 ft up in the French Pyrenees. It is a delectable landscape scoured and shaped by Ice Age glaciers leaving behind deep ravines, rocky knolls and an array of beautiful mountain lakes, surrounded by imposing mountains. An enjoyable mixture of good walks, relaxing in natural hot pools and soaking up the sun in clear mountain air. Consult full walking holiday details

cerdagne walking holiday France

Cerdagne, French Pyrenees

On this independent walking holiday you'll be exploring Cerdagne, a picturesque plateau, lying at 6000 ft up in the French Pyrenees. It is a delectable landscape scoured and shaped by Ice Age glaciers leaving behind deep ravines, rocky knolls and an array of beautiful mountain lakes, surrounded by imposing mountains including the Pic Carlit at almost 3000m or 10,000ft, the highest mountain in the eastern Pyrenees mountains. Pine forests and pasture are omnipresent at lower altitudes whilst higher up alpine meadows flourish with an array of wild flowers including gentians, anemones and orchids.

Lost in the heart of the Catalan mountains in the eastern Pyrenees, the Cerdagne is an exceptional place, blessed with a sunny climate, vast open panoramic views and relatively gentle terrain. This makes it an ideal mountain walking holiday destination for experienced and novice walkers alike.

The Cerdagne plateau had been contested for centuries between France and Spain until the treaty of the Pyrenees in the 17th century fixed a border across the mountains. The citadel of Mont-Louis was built as a safeguard to protect the French border and is an austere and imposing site. The fortified town was designed by Vauban for Louis XIV and is one of 11 sites designed by Vauban listed as world heritage sites by UNESCO. Mont-Louis is the highest fortified town in France at over 1500m as well as being one of the most original, as it is one of Vauban's towns that were created from scratch and is certainly one of the best preserved.

The Cerdagne in the Pyrenees is also known for its quaint villages and Romanesque churches which you'll discover on our unique independent walking tour. The most unusual is La Merquita, a tiny and beautiful church with three apses in clover-leaf shape. The 13 traditional villages which make up the Cerdagne of the Pyrenees region offer the opportunity to discover the local gastonomy and to reinvigorate tired muscles in natural warm waters.

This self-guided walking holiday in southern France is designed to be accessible and interesting to both occasional walkers and experienced trekkers alike. There is plenty of time to enjoy the changing countryside in a spot reputed for its sunny climate, as well as taking advantage of the natural springs giving warm open air pools at Llo and Dorres to relax and rejuvenate tired muscles. Those who are looking to increase the challenge, can make the pilgrimage to the summit of the highest mountain in the Eastern Pyrenees, the Pic Carlit.

One of the most picturesque parts of this Pyrenees walking holiday is the walk around the lakes under the Pic Carlit. The first and by far the largest lake is Les Bouillouses, where one of the night's accommodation is located. Further towards the mountains there are a collection of 12 lakes decorating this upland plateau with an assortment of colours, encircled by immense granite peaks. The lakes and upland meadows provide an ideal environment for a rich flora and fauna.

Take a look at other independent walking holidays in the French Pyrenees

Follow High Point Holidays's board Cerdagne on Pinterest. 

cerdagne mont louis walking holiday pyrenees France

independent walking holiday pyrenees France cerdagne

lakes and mountains in French Pyrenees walking tour

self guided walking holiday Cerdagne pyrenees France

thermal spa cerdagne walking holiday France Pyrenees

Go to our full list of independent walking holidays & guided walking holidays