Best of Stevenson Trail

Best of Stevenson Trail
Concise details on the Best of Stevenson Trail tour can be obtained by downloading the tour pdf [right]. Alternatively, read the tour description below and click through the sub-headings in the right-hand column for information on access, accommodation, availability, content and prices.

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est of Stevenson Trail brings you the highlights of the Robert Louis Stevenson trail France – that’s 85 miles/140 kms of fine French trails spread over six sumptuous days of hiking. What do you miss? Some arguably monotonous forestry sections, around a day’s walking on tarmac and the ‘Mimente Valley railway’ section. If you are keen NOT to miss this last bit, we can easily add an extra night in Cassagnas.

We had a wonderful week! Thank you for arranging the unbroken sunshine in addition to everything else. It was, as a totality, quite, quite excellent. Thank you.”

- An sms at the end of their tour by Mr & Mrs Scott of London.

Best of Stevenson Trail delivers the finest sections along one of France’s top-ten hiking experiences, complemented by welcoming accommodation. You get to walk the most challenging, but also the most aesthetically pleasing, from Le Monastier to Langogne and from La Bastide to Florac. You also enjoy a short taster of life on Le Cevenol mountain railway¹. It’s all the highs without the lows as you enjoy the delights of the Upper Loire Valley, Mont Lozere and the grand finale, the ‘chemin des crêtes’.

Best of Stevenson Trail sees you averaging 12½ miles/20 kms per day, so well within the capacity of most healthy adults. The first day’s walking can be split into two according to taste and the longest day, the last, at 18 miles, is arguably the finest – so just take your time and enjoy it as it unfolds beneath your feet.

 

Best of Stevenson Trail map

  • £670.00 Pounds Sterling or €760.00 Euros
  • [Per person in a shared double or twin-bedded room]
  • Single person rate: please enquire
Note: Please contact us to check for the latest Sterling prices. Sterling prices are confirmed at the time of booking.
  • A ‘world’s top travel adventure’ by Forbes Traveler- who recommend The Enlightened Traveller – see ‘yellow highlighted’ link below.
  • Enjoy sub-alpine to Mediterranean flora and volcanic plateau to schist valley topography.
  • Hike the best of the Cevennes’ hill-crests and Mont Lozere – 5573 ft/1699 m.
  • Visit fascinating and historic villages en route.
  • 7-night, moderate, self-guided tour
  • Start any day, beg. April to mid-October.
  • Tour starts in Le Puy-en-Velay and finishes in Florac.
  • Best access: Lyon airport or SNCF, with onward train to Le Puy via St Etienne.
  • Welcoming mix of ‘2-star standard’ hotels and auberges.
  • We transport your luggage, you just carry a light day pack.
  • 7 nights B & B in ‘2-star standard’ hotels and auberges and all hotel taxes
  • 6 evening meals – leaving you free to choose where to eat dinner in le Puy – options abound.
  • Luggage transfers¹ and transport integral to the programme, incl. transfers from Le Puy to Le Monastier, the start of the trail.
  • Train tickets from Langogne to La Bastide.
  • Hiking Insight Notes™ that empower & make orientation easy
  • 1:25,000 scale maps & themed vacation dossier.
  • 7/7 Emergency telephone help-line service with native-English speaking local backup.
  • Notes:
    ¹ You are entitled to take up to three pieces of luggage per couple, each weighing up to 13 kgs – i.e., no suitcase must exceed 13kgs and the max. weight is 3 x 13 kgs or 39 kgs. Single travelers may take two cases or up to 26 kgs. Supplements are payable for extra or overweight luggage.

    Note: we are able to arrange for your excess luggage to be securely stored for the duration of your tour and delivered to the final hotel before your departure. Please ask us for further details of this service if it is of interest to you.

    Not included:
    Remaining meals and all drinks and extras;
    personal expenses;
    entrances into any optional cultural visits and venues;
    hiking, personal and travel insurances;
    travel to Le Puy and from Florac.

  • Nearest airport or SNCF station is Lyon [3 hrs on TGV from Paris or Lille] with onward train journey to Le Puy via St Etienne.
  • Next-best access is via Nimes or Montpellier airports, with onward TGV to Lyon – 30 and 60 minute journeys, respectively.
  • Alternative convenient option is via Clermont-Ferrand airport, with onward regional train to Le Puy via St Etienne.
  • Departure from Florac is by bus [70 mins, but not on a Sunday] or taxi transfer to Ales [60 mins], followed by onward train to Nimes [40 mins]. Please ask for details.
  • We can get you transfered from Florac back to Le Puy via our luggage transporter on departure day, where you would arrive at 17:15. Please ask for details.
    • A mix of comfortable, family-run,’2-star standard’ hotels or equivalent chambres d’hotes and auberges.
    • En-suite facilities.
    • Evening meals follow a fixed menu format for all half-board guests and do not include drinks. Most hotel menus provide a meat or fish dish, plus a vegetarian option; whilst chambres d’hotes and auberges tend to function around one common meal of which all guests partake, bar vegetarians, who would have an alternative dish. All showcase ‘produits du terroirs’ typical of the regions through which you walk.
    • Warm summers; mild and sunny spring & autumn
    • Enjoy sub-alpine to Mediterranean flora and volcanic plateau to schist valley topography.
    • Cross four ‘natural’ historical regions – Velay, Gevaudan, Mont Lozere & Cevennes.

    Lozere Gard Upper Loire  Ardeche

    Best of Stevenson Trail – Tour Itinerary

    [Times, distances and elevations are approximate.]

    Day 1: Arrival in Le Puy en Velay and hotel check-in. A visit to Puy merits a day’s stay in itself, so much history is there here to enjoy – get there early! Night in Le Puy.

    Day 2

    Le Puy to Le Bouchet

    [13 miles-21 kms, 6.5 hrs,
    +460 ms -175 ms]

    Across Haute Loire

    Taxi transfer (20 kms) to Le Monastier and the start of the trail. After a short descent into the Loire Valley, you climb over 400 metres, through charming hamlets and across volcanic plateau before arriving at Stevenson’s first overnight stop.

    Night in Le Bouchet St Nicolas.

    Day 3

    Le Bouchet St Nicolas to Langogne

    [15 miles-24.5 kms, approx. 6 hrs,
    +285 ms -375 ms]

    Granite Cité

    Mostly gentle climbs and descents today as you traverse numerous hamlets spread out across the plateau en route to the ‘City of the High Prairies,’ – followed by a 90 minute descent to Langogne.

    Night in Langogne.

    Day 4

    La Bastide to Chasseradès.

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

    Over the Watershed

    A 20-min. train ride on Le Cevenol railway is followed by a climb to the Atlantic – Mediterranean watershed, before heading down valley to picturesque Chasseradès.

    Night in Chasseradès.

    Day 5

    Chasseradès to Le Bleymard.

    [10.25 miles-16.5 kms, 5.5 hrs,
    +280 ms -390 ms]

    Source of The Lot

    You climb into Goulet Forest, and enter the Cevennes proper with some great views, before following the Lot from near its source to Les Alpiers and onto Bleymard.

    Night in Bleymard.

    Day 6

    Le Bleymard to Pont de Montvert.

    [11 miles-18 kms, approx. 6.5 hrs,
    +630 ms -824 ms].

    Mont Lozere

    A memorable ascent to Mont Lozere, and the highest point in south-central France, Le Pic de Finiels (1699 ms). Then it’s a steep descent followed by a gentle hike to Le Pont de Montvert and into Camisard Country.

    Night in Pont de Montvert.

    Day 7

    Pont de Montvert to Florac.

    [15.5 miles-25 km, approx. 7 hrs,
    +545 ms -875 ms.

    Signal du Bouges

    The longest day is blessed with some memorable views over the waves of Cevennes hills as you walk mountain crest, crossing from Mediterranean to Alpine flora and back along the watershed.

    Night in Florac.

    Day 8: Departure day – Enjoy your breakfast and onward travel to Ales. Bon retour et a la prochaine! Optional return transfer to Le Puy at tour’s end – please ask us for details.

    Independent testimonials about walking the Stevenson Way with The Enlightened Traveller can be read here:

    Click to see our full range of moderate walks in France