6 most beautiful hikes in the Camargue

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Hiking between large ponds, exceptional wildlife and beaches, you can explore the Camargue natural region in complete tranquility.

The Camargue is a unique region of its kind. Its landscapes are divided into swamps interspersed with large ponds, long sandy beaches bordering the sea, areas of cultivation such as rice fields, and areas dedicated to livestock, with its Camargue horses and bulls, white for some and black for others.

This atypical natural space is created by the Rhone Delta, where the river splits and diverges before meeting the Mediterranean Sea. With many birds inhabiting the area, including pink flamingos, the region is completely protected by the Regional Natural Park of the Camargue. A popular meeting place for nature lovers who also love hiking!

Paths, paths, dams, beaches… paths here take on a variety of forms. Provide waterproof footwear, especially for hiking during the rainy season. Hiking in the Camargue is flat so the terrain is not difficult, but you will have to cover many kilometers quickly to reach your destination.

That’s why we offer you the most beautiful hikes in the Camargue to start with, and then some great bike rides in the Camargue to cover long distances… along the way!

the most beautiful hikes

1. Promenade from La Digue to the sea in Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer.

Camargue hiking

Photo courtesy of Alltrails.

Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer is an important stop for walking around the Camargue. A wonderful classic is to leave directly from the resort, at the very end of the equipped beaches, walk along the Dige to the sea, which separates the vast Imperial Pond from the sandy strip of Gul Beach.

Here the view is far on both sides of the route, with the marshes of the Camargue on one side and the Mediterranean on the other, with as many stops as possible for bird watching as well as for swimming. Pleasant and without any technical difficulties, you can easily adapt the route (in this example in the light version) to your abilities, and expand if necessary.

2. Watch the flamingos from Salins de Giro.

Watch the flamingos from Salins de Giro

Photo Credit: Shutterstock – Sabina Schaaf

The star of the Camargue is undoubtedly the pink flamingo. Many of them live in the Regional Natural Park of the Camargue, and there is always a renewed pleasure to watch their strange gait in ponds, their beaks in the water.

Departing from Salins de Giraud, this long hike through the Camargue will take you through the marshes to reach La Digue-à-la-Mer, reserved for walkers and cyclists. It crosses the Fangasier and Galaberta ponds before reaching the Flamingo Observatory. Don’t forget to bring your binoculars, they will come in handy!

3. Walk through the Pont de Gau ornithological park

Camargue hiking

Photo courtesy of Alltrails.

Not far from Sainte Marie, the Ornithological Park of Pont de Gault is another great opportunity to observe many birds, including, of course, flamingos, while enjoying a beautiful walk through the Camargue. The walk is especially pleasant, easy and accessible to everyone. Just follow the paths marked in the park and respect the opening hours and you’re done!

Please note that the entrance fee for the park is EUR 7.50 per adult and EUR 5 per child aged 4 to 12.

4. Mas du Pont de Rusty trail

Mas du Pont de Rusty trail

Photo: Shutterstock – Zuzana Ulikova

Mas du Pont de Rousty is an interesting stop in many ways, as it houses the Camargue Museum, which is run by the Regional Natural Park. A visit is a must before or after this beautiful walk through the Camargue on an easy level, which follows a varied and well laid out trail of discovery.

Ponds and marshes, rice fields and local farms, not to mention the shepherd’s hut, is a real summary of the Camargue to be discovered on this family and educational itinerary.

5. Great tour of Boduk Beach

Camargue hiking

Photo courtesy of Alltrails.

With this beautiful hike in the Camargue, we covered a large stretch of the road in terms of kilometers. Get out early and make sure you have enough stamina! Please note that if necessary, you can shorten the length by parking closer to the beach.

This large loop passes through the ponds of the Camargue to reach the emblematic Boduc Beach, a long stretch of sand and dunes on the Mediterranean coast. Swimming stops are recommended on sunny days, but the hike should be done out of season for more peace of mind.

6. Along the banks of the Grand Rhone

Along the banks of the Grand Rhone

Photo Credit: Shutterstock – illpaxphotomatic

Hiking the Camargue you can take in return, this route starts (or ends) at Salins des Girauds to get to Porte Saint Louis du Rhône, skirting the banks of the Grande Rhône before it opens. to the Mediterranean. Therefore, it will be necessary to take a ferry (free of charge) to cross the river.

The walk, with its white poplars, ash and elms, promises to be more wooded than usual in the Camargue, thanks to fresh water from the river, and allows you to visit the imposing Tour Saint-Louis (15 meters high). , from where a 360° panorama of the region opens.

The most beautiful bike rides

Hiking in the Camargue stretches quickly for many kilometers: walking can sometimes be a little long, even if there is practically no terrain in the region! Only the most enduring walkers can make long hikes in excess of 30 km. For others, the solution is to cycle around the Camargue!

1. By bike along Dige to the sea

Camargue hiking

Photo courtesy of Alltrails.

Return to our starting point, Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer. We have already taken La Digue to the sea on foot, this time we go much further thanks to the bike.

La Digue à la mer indeed crosses much of the Rhone Delta, always between the sea, dunes, marshes and ponds, for a beautiful bike ride through the Camargue. Pink flamingos, Camargue bulls, guardian horses that can be seen along the way. The path plan allows you to easily travel it on two wheels, with a view to the Gachole lighthouse and optional picnic breaks or swimming breaks for a wonderful day’s rest.

2. Bicycle route along the Little Rhone.

Bicycle route along the Little Rhone

Photo courtesy of Alltrails.

Still leaving Sainte Marie, this time we will cycle through the Camargue in the other direction to go up the Little Rhone, which marks the limit with the Little Camargue. The route is varied and pleasant, through the characteristic landscapes of the delta.

After crossing the Little Rhône on the Pont Silveréal, the return to Sainte-Marie is by small, well-marked roads along the ponds, including the Cacharel road. There you will see the folklore of the Camargue: shepherds, herds of horses, bulls, etc.

3. Cycle loop in the heart of the Camargue

Camargue hiking

Photo Credit: Shutterstock – Camille.L Photography

This great cycle loop will take you to the heart of the Camargue, through fields, rice paddies, marshes, salt marshes, but also sansours, the vast Camargue salt meadows with low and salt marsh vegetation, where horses sometimes graze.

An excellent mid-level Camargue bike ride to cover a good example of the region, the route borders the Vaccares pond, approaches Salins de Giraud before crossing the small village of Sambuc, in a typical Camargue atmosphere.

4. Salt and flamingos from Salins de Giro

Salt and flamingos from Salins de Giro

Photo courtesy of Alltrails.

We’ve already done the equivalent of this hike in the Camargue on foot, but given the distances to be covered, it’s just as tempting to take this beautiful route on a bike. Due to the paths and paths that are paved in places, mountain biking or VTC is recommended for a smooth ride.

From Salins de Giraud you will catch up with La Digue at sea to cross the great ponds of the Camargue: colonies of pink flamingos among other native bird species will attract special attention. The advantage of two-wheelers would be to greatly reduce the duration of this walk, the difficulty of which becomes moderate at best.

Read also now in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur

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