France

Description

Corsica - by Henk

France, country of contrasts, home to the inventors of the Topoguide, is a great walking destination all year round. An intricate network of long distance footpaths, the so-called Grands Randonnées, reaches out to the farthest corners of the country. At least 80 long distance trails and their countless variants are meticulously documented and waymarked. Mastering a bit of French will help you find your way, and a bottle of wine at that.

It may be difficult to find information or topo guides for many trails. The exact route - not only the name "GR" - of any hiking trail in France is copyrighted by the FFRP and cannot be published by others without their consent. The maps of IGN usually show all regional PR's and national GR's.

The French themselves are mad about walking, often in groups of about 20, recognisable by their non-stop rather loud conversations lasting from dawn till dusk and snacking on hard boiled eggs en route. So join the crowd and turn bon vivant. Walk the Provence in spring, pass through the wine regions coloured all red in late autumn. Enjoy the Atlantic coast and its birds in May, and the shimmering sun on the glaciers in summer. Explore the Loire in autumn, and the dark forests of the Morvan in winter. Or take a walk all the way from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean right across the Pyrenees along the GR10. Another popular trail is the GR5, from Luxembourg to Nice through the Vosges, the Elzas and the Alps. For those fearless and bursting with energy, the GR20 is a fine challenge. This trail following the highest ridges of the island of Corsica is for the surefooted only.

Another popular walk of course is the TMB, the Tour du Mont Blanc: eight days with views on the highest mountain of Europe, weather permitting. Drawback: crazy busy. Less known, but just as fine, is the Tour du Queyras (GR58), also in the Alps. Other best hikes in the Alps are the Tour de la Vanoise (GR55) or the Tour de l'Oisans (GR54). You can walk the Vallée des Merveilles (GR52). And a bit on the outside of the Alps is the Vercors (GR91 - GR95) and Mt Lubéron (GR97). There you are, now you know what the French themselves like most.

Along most GR's you will find huts or Gites d'Etappe at regular intervals. These are mostly just simple shelters, so bring food to prepare your own meals. Outside the main summer season, with most French back in Paris, the Gites are often closed. In such cases, bring your own tent. Most GR's can be tough but not dangerous, except the GR20.

Map

Hiking Map of France NWHiking Map of France NE

Hiking Map of France_SWHiking Map of France SE

Trails

Regions

Books

Stanfords
United Kingdom
2020
  • Le Pays de Rennes à pied
  • Le Pays de Rennes à pied, FFRP topo-guide Ref. No. P352, with 50 walks of varying length and difficulty around Rennes. There are walks along the rivers Ille, Seiche and Vilaine and the Canal d`Ille et Rance, and two itineraries explore Rennes itself. Each walk is presented on a separate colour extract from IGN’s topographic survey of France at... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
» Click to open
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Saint-Nazaire - Pornic - Cote de Jade IGN TOP25 Map 1123OT
  • Topographic survey of France at 1:25,000 in IGN`s excellent TOP25 / Série Bleue series. All the maps are GPS compatible, with a 1km UTM grid plus latitude and longitude lines at 5’ intervals. Contours are at 5m intervals except for mountainous areas where the maps have contours at 10m intervals, vividly enhanced by hill shading and graphics for... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
2018
  • Volcans et lacs d`Auvergne - Pays du Val d`Allier GR30/GR41
  • Volcans et lacs d`Auvergne, FFRP topoguide Ref. no. 305, covering in all 886km of hiking trails across the volcanic landscape of the Auvergne west and south of Clermont-Ferrand, including sections of GR 30 and GR41. Current edition of this title was published in June 2014.ABOUT THE FFRP (Fédération française de la randonnée pédestre)... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
2016
  • Le Parc d`Armorique à pied FFRP Topo-guide No. PN12
  • Le Parc d`Armorique à pied, FFRP topo-guide Ref. No. PN12, with 43 day walks of varying length and difficulty in western Brittany. Current edition of this title was published in March 2016.To see the list of other FFRP guides with day walks please click on the series link.ABOUT THE FFRP (Fédération française de la randonnée pédestre)... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
2019
  • Autour du Bassin d`Arcachon à pied
  • Autour du Bassin d`Arcachon à pied, FFRP topoguide Ref. no. P331, with six local walks of varying length and difficulty, plus an 85km route around the basin. Each walk is presented on a separate colour extract from IGN’s topographic survey of France at 1:25,000, with its description cross-referenced to the map. Current edition of this title was... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
2014
  • GR653D Chemins de St-Jacques: Montgenèvre - Arles FFRP Topo-guide No. 6531
  • Chemins de St-Jacques: Montgenèvre - Arles, FFRP topoguide Ref. no. 6531, covering a 459km route along the GR653D from Montgenèvre in the French Alps on the Italian border, across Gap, Sisteron, Apt and Cavaillon, to Arles. Current edition of this title was published in June 2014.ABOUT THE FFRP (Fédération française de la randonnée pédestre)... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Futuna - Alofi IGN 4902
  • The islands of Futuna and Alofi (the Hoorn Islands) in the Pacific Ocean, part of the French COM (collectivité d`outre-mer) of Wallis and Futuna, on a detailed survey map at 1:25,000 from the IGN, France’s topographic survey organization. Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
2015
  • La Marne à pied FFRP Topo-guide No. D051
  • La Marne à pied, FFRP topo-guide Ref. No. D051, with 38 day walks of varying length and difficulty in the department, including in the Montagne de Reims and walks connected with the Meuse-Argonne offensive in the final months of WWI. Each walk is presented on a separate colour extract from IGN’s topographic survey of France at 1:25,000, with... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Besancon - Montbeliard IGN TOP100 137
  • Discover the new double-sided laminated edition of TOP100 road maps of France from the Institut Géographique National (IGN); exceptionally detailed, contoured road maps which include the cycle paths and greenways of the AF3V (French Association for the Development of Cycle Paths and Greenways), ideal for exploring the French countryside by car,... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
» Click to open
Stanfords
United Kingdom
2015
  • La Côte Picarde à pied FFRP Topo-guide No. P804
  • La Côte Picarde à pied, FFRP topo-guide Ref. No.P804, with 26 day walks of varying length and difficulty in the area around Amiens and the estuary of the Somme. Each walk is presented on a separate colour extract from IGN’s topographic survey of France at 1:25,000, with its description cross-referenced to the map. Current edition of this title... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Bordeaux et sa métropole à pied VI09
  • Bordeaux à pied, FFRP topo-guide Ref. No. VI09, with 16 walks in the city centre and in the outer districts. Each walk is presented on a separate colour extract from a street plan or a detailed IGN map, with its description cross-referenced to the map. Current edition of this title was published in April 2016.ABOUT THE FFRP (Fédération... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Grenoble - Chamrousse - Belledonne IGN 3335OT
  • Topographic survey of France at 1:25,000 in IGN`s excellent TOP25 / Série Bleue series. All the maps are GPS compatible, with a 1km UTM grid plus latitude and longitude lines at 5’ intervals. Contours are at 5m intervals except for mountainous areas where the maps have contours at 10m intervals, vividly enhanced by hill shading and graphics for... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
2018
  • Grenoble et ses environs à pied P381
  • Grenoble et ses environs à pied, FFRP topo-guide Ref. No. P381, with 35 day walks of varying length and difficulty both in the environs of Grenoble and in the city itself. Each walk is presented on a separate colour extract from IGN’s topographic survey of France at 1:25,000 or on a street plan, with its description cross-referenced to the map.... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
» Click to open
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2018
  • Wandelgids P381 Grenoble & ses environs à pied | FFRP
  • Grenoble et ses environs à pied, FFRP topo-guide Ref. No. P381, with 35 day walks of varying length and difficulty both in the environs of Grenoble and in the city itself. Each walk is presented on a separate colour extract from IGN’s topographic survey of France at 1:25,000 or on a street plan, with its description cross-referenced to the map.... Read more
» Click to close
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Rennes - Cesson-Sévigne - Liffré IGN 25K Série Bleue Map 1218SB
  • Topographic survey of France at 1:25,000 in IGN`s excellent TOP25 / Série Bleue series. All the maps are GPS compatible, with a 1km UTM grid plus latitude and longitude lines at 5’ intervals. Contours are at 5m intervals except for mountainous areas where the maps have contours at 10m intervals, vividly enhanced by hill shading and graphics for... Read more
Bol.com
Netherlands
  • French Bed & Breakfast
  • Britain's best B&B guide to France, aimed at independent travellers seeking a truly special place to stay. Travelling the length and breadth of the country, our French team has selected over 800 B&Bs, including our Award Winners. Fall in love with a place and stay longer, change your route and stop off somewhere new - there's great flexibility... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • Bol.com, Belgium
» Click to open
Bol.com
Belgium
  • French Bed & Breakfast
  • Britain's best B&B guide to France, aimed at independent travellers seeking a truly special place to stay. Travelling the length and breadth of the country, our French team has selected over 800 B&Bs, including our Award Winners. Fall in love with a place and stay longer, change your route and stop off somewhere new - there's great flexibility... Read more
» Click to close
More books…

Maps

Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Ales IGN 2840OT
  • Topographic survey of France at 1:25,000 in IGN`s excellent TOP25 / Série Bleue series. All the maps are GPS compatible, with a 1km UTM grid plus latitude and longitude lines at 5’ intervals. Contours are at 5m intervals except for mountainous areas where the maps have contours at 10m intervals, vividly enhanced by hill shading and graphics for... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Bayeux - Arromanches-les-Bains IGN 1512OT
  • Topographic survey of France at 1:25,000 in IGN`s excellent TOP25 / Série Bleue series. All the maps are GPS compatible, with a 1km UTM grid plus latitude and longitude lines at 5’ intervals. Contours are at 5m intervals except for mountainous areas where the maps have contours at 10m intervals, vividly enhanced by hill shading and graphics for... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Bordeaux and its Environs IGN 88400
  • Topographic survey of France at 1:25,000 in IGN`s excellent TOP25 / Série Bleue series. All the maps are GPS compatible, with a 1km UTM grid plus latitude and longitude lines at 5’ intervals. Contours are at 5m intervals except for mountainous areas where the maps have contours at 10m intervals, vividly enhanced by hill shading and graphics for... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Aix-en-Provence - Vitrolles - Lambesc IGN 3143ET
  • Topographic survey of France at 1:25,000 in IGN`s excellent TOP25 / Série Bleue series. All the maps are GPS compatible, with a 1km UTM grid plus latitude and longitude lines at 5’ intervals. Contours are at 5m intervals except for mountainous areas where the maps have contours at 10m intervals, vividly enhanced by hill shading and graphics for... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Troyes - Lusigny-sur-Barse IGN 25K Série Bleue Map 2817SB
  • Topographic survey of France at 1:25,000 in IGN`s excellent TOP25 / Série Bleue series. All the maps are GPS compatible, with a 1km UTM grid plus latitude and longitude lines at 5’ intervals. Contours are at 5m intervals except for mountainous areas where the maps have contours at 10m intervals, vividly enhanced by hill shading and graphics for... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Iles d`Hyères IGN Mini Map
  • Iles d`Hyères in Provence at 1:25,000 on mini map produced by IGN using their topographic survey mapping. The map has extensive overprint highlighting local signposted hiking trails and cycle routes, as well as recreational facilities, including equestrian centres and golf courses, cycle hire facilities, various places of interest, etc. This... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Saint-Etienne - Lyon - PNR du Livradois-Forez IGN TOP100 149
  • Discover the new double-sided laminated edition of TOP100 road maps of France from the Institut Géographique National (IGN); exceptionally detailed, contoured road maps which include the cycle paths and greenways of the AF3V (French Association for the Development of Cycle Paths and Greenways), ideal for exploring the French countryside by car,... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Nancy - Epinal - Vallee de la Moselle IGN TOP100 121
  • Discover the new double-sided laminated edition of TOP100 road maps of France from the Institut Géographique National (IGN); exceptionally detailed, contoured road maps which include the cycle paths and greenways of the AF3V (French Association for the Development of Cycle Paths and Greenways), ideal for exploring the French countryside by car,... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Clermont-Ferrand - Salers - PNR des Volcans d`Auvergne IGN TOP100 148
  • Discover the new double-sided laminated edition of TOP100 road maps of France from the Institut Géographique National (IGN); exceptionally detailed, contoured road maps which include the cycle paths and greenways of the AF3V (French Association for the Development of Cycle Paths and Greenways), ideal for exploring the French countryside by car,... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
» Click to open
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Perigueux - Tocane-Saint-Apre IGN 1834SB
  • Topographic survey of France at 1:25,000 in IGN`s excellent TOP25 / Série Bleue series. All the maps are GPS compatible, with a 1km UTM grid plus latitude and longitude lines at 5’ intervals. Contours are at 5m intervals except for mountainous areas where the maps have contours at 10m intervals, vividly enhanced by hill shading and graphics for... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Metz - Courcelles-Chaussy IGN 3413SB
  • Topographic survey of France at 1:25,000 in IGN`s excellent TOP25 / Série Bleue series. All the maps are GPS compatible, with a 1km UTM grid plus latitude and longitude lines at 5’ intervals. Contours are at 5m intervals except for mountainous areas where the maps have contours at 10m intervals, vividly enhanced by hill shading and graphics for... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Rennes - Saint-Malo - Le Mont-Saint-Michel IGN TOP100 115
  • Discover the new double-sided laminated edition of TOP100 road maps of France from the Institut Géographique National (IGN); exceptionally detailed, contoured road maps which include the cycle paths and greenways of the AF3V (French Association for the Development of Cycle Paths and Greenways), ideal for exploring the French countryside by car,... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
» Click to open
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Aix-en-Provence - Toulon - Frejus - Calanques National Park IGN TOP100 172
  • Discover the new double-sided laminated edition of TOP100 road maps of France from the Institut Géographique National (IGN); exceptionally detailed, contoured road maps which include the cycle paths and greenways of the AF3V (French Association for the Development of Cycle Paths and Greenways), ideal for exploring the French countryside by car,... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
» Click to open
De Zwerver
Netherlands
» Click to close
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Saint-Gervais-d`Auvergne IGN Map 2430SB
  • Topographic survey of France at 1:25,000 in IGN`s excellent TOP25 / Série Bleue series. All the maps are GPS compatible, with a 1km UTM grid plus latitude and longitude lines at 5’ intervals. Contours are at 5m intervals except for mountainous areas where the maps have contours at 10m intervals, vividly enhanced by hill shading and graphics for... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Bordeaux - Arcachon - Gironde - Médoc IGN TOP100 145
  • Discover the new double-sided laminated edition of TOP100 road maps of France from the Institut Géographique National (IGN); exceptionally detailed, contoured road maps which include the cycle paths and greenways of the AF3V (French Association for the Development of Cycle Paths and Greenways), ideal for exploring the French countryside by car,... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
» Click to open
De Zwerver
Netherlands
» Click to close
More maps…

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