The Chamborigaud viaduct - Walking Cevennes by Rail

Walking Cevennes by Rail

Walking Cevennes by RailConcise details on the Walking Cevennes by Rail tour can be obtained by downloading the tour pdf [right]. Alternatively, read the tour description below and click through the sub-headings in the left-hand column for information on access, accommodation, availability, content and prices.

Note: The timetable for the next six months of the Cevenol Railway is published in March, so bookings cannot be taken until then. Whilst the actual train times tend to remain constant, what does differ are the precise days when scheduled repair and maintenance works are carried out. During such works, the trains are replaced by SNCF buses, defeating the object of this rail-hike tour. So please bookmark this page, check back at the end of March and contact us then with your preferred holiday dates.

Due to uncertainties regarding the timetabling of Le Cevenol Railway, as well as the scheduling of works on the line itself, which sees the train being replaced by an SNCF bus, we are unfortunately not offering this tour at present. Please check back after March 2024 for the latest news on the tour.

New – please check out the independent customer reviews for the tour at the foot of the page!

  • Unavailable at present
  • Discover France’s finest mountain railroad with its remarkable viaducts
  • Enjoy fine scenery from your seat and then walk it for yourself
  • Experience some of the Cevennes’ and Lozere’s best trails
  • Personalise two hikes to suit your needs on the day
  • Visit fascinating medieval villages and explore the banks of Lake Villefort
  • Walk the finest stretch of the Regordane Way and a section of the Robert Louis Stevenson Trail
  • 7-night, self-guided light-to-moderate walking tour
  • Arrive any day of the week from mid-April to mid-October
  • Tour starts in Villefort and finishes in Langogne
  • Best access: Nimes airport [Ryan Air] or SNCF ot via Claremont-Ferrand
  • Good accommodation standard
  • Collection from and return to stations where hotel is more than 5 minutes walk from the station.
  • B&B: 7-nights in 2-star standard hotels
  • 7 evening meals
  • All tickets on Le Cevenol train, starting in Villefort and finishing in Langogne
  • Collection from and return to Villefort station
  • Two people transfers
  • Maps, excellent walking notes & dossier
  • Emergency telephone back-up & support
  • Best access is via Nimes SNCF station [4 hrs on TGV from Paris or Lille] with onward journey to Villefort via Ales – please ask for details or see Tour Itinerary below.
  • Other convenient options are via Lyon or Montpellier airports, with onward TGV to Nimes – 60 and 30 minute journeys, respectively.
  • Alternative access is via Clermont-Ferrand airport or SNCF station [regional rail link with Paris], with onward journey on Le Cevenol to Villefort in 3½ hours – please ask for details.
    • Good level of character and comfort, all with en-suite facilities.
    • Three 2-star standard hotels.
    • Two nights in La Bastide
    • Two nights in Langogne
    • Three nights in Villefort.
  • Hot, dry summers; mild & sunny spring and autumn
  • Volcanic plateau, schist valleys, granit gorges; medieval villages & historic hamlets
A rail-hike tour: a sacré ensemble and ‘low-carbon’ holiday, Walking Cevennes by Rail features stimulating hiking laced together by short train-rides along the “line of 100 tunnels.”


alking Cevennes by Rail is for those who like walking and train travel – a rail-walk tour combining fine, light or moderate walking options in Ardeche and Lozere threaded together by short hops along Le Cévenol mountain railway line.

Enjoy the rides, delight in the changing landscape of Gevaudan and Eastern Cevennes and get a sense of what you are about to experience upon arrival at your next destination. When Walking Cevennes by Rail, you just check-in and walk!

Walking Cevennes by Rail - Cevenol mapBuilt over a century-and-a-half ago to facilitate the transport of wine and coal to Paris, the line bears testimony to man’s engineering ingenuity as it wends its way along a geological fault-line, through innumerable tunnels and across some breathtaking viaducts.


alking Cevennes by Rail brings you comfortable accommodations at each programmed stop and memorable hiking trails that serve to bring to life the land linked together by the Cevennes train.

Walking Cevennes by Rail - france_departments-Regordane best of mapWhen Walking Cevennes by Rail, you have a choice of walk lengths available on two of the six days, so you can decide on the day whether to keep it gentle or opt for the moderate challenge.


Tour Itinerary – Walking Cevennes by Rail.

Day 1: Arrival in Villefort. Best access is via Nimes Gare SNCF. Then take The Cevenol train from Nimes via Alès. Alternative access is available on the same line from Paris southwards via Clermont-Ferrand.

Day 2

Lake Villefort circular hikes

[Walk options from 7 kms-4½ miles, +/- 50ms, to 14 kms-9½ miles, +/- 170ms.]

The lost village of Bayard

Enjoy a hike round the lake in search of Bayard village with optional extensions to Castanet castle or Villefort via the Mont Lozere trail.

Second night on the banks of Lake Villefort.

Day 3

La Bastide to Villefort

[16 kms-10 miles, +170 ms, -540 ms].

The Regordane Way.

Transfer to the SNCF station and hop off at La Bastide. You are met by our friendly local taxi chappie who drops you off at a strategic point on route; giving you more time to enjoy an unforgettable walk through French history, along hill crest and volcanic plateau to a medieval village on the Chaussezac gorge. Then descend to Lac Villefort.

Third night in Villefort.

Day 4

Ardeche circular walks

[9 kms-6 miles, with optional extensions.]

Notre Dame de Neige Abbey

Transfer back to the station and a 15-minute train journey to La Bastide. Check in and hike to Notre Dame de Neige Abbey, celebrated for its liquor and where RL Stevenson stayed whilst hiking Cevennes in 1879.

Night in La Bastide.

Day 5

La Bastide to Chasseradès.

[7.5 miles-12 kms, approx. 3.5 hrs, +330 ms –160 ms]

Stevenson Trail/GR70

Climb 300 ms to the Plateau de Chambonnet at 1361 ms alt. as you head west into Lozere along a section of the Stevenson Trail/GR70. Cross the Atlantic-Mediterranean watershed and head down valley to picture-postcard Chasseradès. Lunch in a local hotel, a walk around the village and we’ll collect and return you to La Bastide.

Second night in La Bastide.

Day 6

Langogne Circular.

[5¼ miles/8.5 Kms, +/- 55 ms, approx. 3 hours walking]

Lake Naussac

Short morning train ride to Langogne, check your luggage in and enjoy a gentle hike to the banks of Lake Naussac for lunch. Then you return via a historic road and walk the town’s internal ‘circulade’ and inner sanctum.

Night in Langogne.

Day 7

The Road to Pradelles.

[9.5 miles/16 Kms, +/- 370 ms, approx. 6 hours]

La Granit Cité

The tour ends with the chance to walk another section of the original Regordane Way on route to the fascinating medieval fortified town of Pradelles across the border in Auvergne. Then return back to your hotel along the 18th Century version of the trail.

Second night in Langogne.

Day 8: Departure day from Walking Cevennes by Rail – Breakfast followed by onward train: to Nimes via Ales arriving 12.45 or to Clermont, arriving 13.40¹.

¹ Train times are non-contractual and subject to change. Please check the options and times for your arrival and departure before booking.

Further Reading:

Independent testimonials about The Enlightened Traveller can be read here:

Walking Cevennes by Rail
4 Our Rating
Customer Score 4.5 (2 votes)
  • Enjoy the countryside from your carriage, then get to walk it yourself!
  • Optional walk lengths on two days, while two others can be shortened on demand
  • Industrial architecture at its best, with jaw-dropping viaducts
  • check-in your luggage and walk - suitcases with wheels de rigeur!
  • Vertigo sufferers are advised not to look out the windows!
  • Modern deisel trains with no bar!
The 'line of one hundred tunnels', not to mention some of Europe's most spectacular viaducts, gives you comfortable and eco-friendly access to the lost treasures of remote Lozere."
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