Hike Up a Gourmet Appetite in Cevennes National Park

Welcome to Cevennes National Park

This package was coordinated by MEET project partner National Parks of France and created by the managers and people of the protected area of Cevennes. The tour is provided by the local tour operator Cevennes Evasion Voyages Nature. 

This test tour is a result of the MEET project’s objective to develop an integrated strategy to settle an Eco-Tourism Development Model for the Mediterranean Protected Areas that boosts a better seasonal distribution of tourism flows. By participating in this tour you will be part of a small group contributing to the development of a new sustainable travel concept which aims to support conservation and benefit the local communities…

NOTE: This tour is directed at nature and culture oriented hikers (3-5 hour hikes) with a good fitness level and strong interest in gourmet gastronomy and local cuisine.

Cevennes National Park, France

Cevennes is located in the south of France, along the Mediterranean sea. Created in 1970, the exceptional and very diverse landscapes of the Cevennes valleys, the granite massifs and the immense karstic plateaus are the legacy of the interaction between generations of human beings and the ‘tamed’ physical environment.

Cevennes National Park is a Biosphere Reserve and a Mediterranean Cultural Landscape included on the World Heritage List. It is the only set mountains in France that houses a permanent population of farmers who maintain the highlands more than 1 000m high as real balconies of the Mediterranean sea. The Park covers 2,784 km², includes 127 municipalities and 64 000 inhabitants.

Profoundly shaped by mankind and its history, the Park area harbours an extraordinarily rich local culture and heritage. These find expression as much in oral tradition (Occitan and French) and written literature (particularly plentiful in this land of the book), as in the know-how of daily life, such as dry-stone walling or silkworm breeding , farming chestnuts or sweet onions, producing pélardon goat’s cheese, etc. It’s all here waiting for you to discover.

Cevennes National  Park & MEET Brand

In this National Park, it is possible to meet people in their daily activities, and exchange stories about their jobs, activities and ways of life.

The Cevennes National Park is the only national park in mainland France whose heart is inhabited permanently. Agro-pastoralism, tourism and forestry are the main economic activities.

With 1500 local business depending on tourism as the main source of income -an estimated of €350 million per year is generated by tourism in the park, Cevennes offers a powerful example of the importance of conserving an area in terms in order to generate significant economic benefits to local communities. There is a common vision regarding the management of the tourism in the area and effective marketing to promote the protected area as a tourism destination.

Biodiversity & Conservation in Cevennes National Park

There are 42 threatened species (of which eleven are critically endangered and 31 vulnerable), 18 rare species, 14 species without status and 20 species to be monitored. The National Park is also home to species of European importance. 103 species are concerned by the European Habitats Directive (two of which are priority species, the Rosalia Longicorn and the Hermit Beetle) and 48 by the Birds Directive – of which one, the Cinereous Vulture (also known as the black or monk vulture), is a priority. Finally, 229 of the species found here are wholly protected by the French environmental code.

The MEET project raises awareness about conservation threats and opportunities within the park, such as:

  • Motorized vehicles
  • Hunting conflicts
  • Forestry expansion
  • Wolf-Sheppard conflicts

During the hikes, guides will bring to life the wealth of the natural and cultural heritages. The purpose is to make participants become aware of their fragility, and the necessity of assuring their protection. This package is respectful of National park regulations: no fires, collection of waste, no noise, picking of herbs and flowers limited to the authorized species, etc.

The work of the local actors met will also be put into value. The producers of the National park are wine growers, cooks and farmers. They make the most of the natural resources of the territory. They know their values and adopt sustainable practices for their exploitation. Raw materials are produced in a natural and sustainable way, in respect of organic farming standards. Thus, they are responsible and profoundly concerned about the conservation of their heritage. The National park supports these local actors within and beyond the MEET project.

 

LOCATION


PRE DEPARTURE GUIDE

Please enjoy your visit to Cevennes National Park and use this page as a guide and reference with all the practical information you might need during your stay. We look forward to MEETing you!

Before you depart,we recommend you have the following with you>

  • Passport
  • Air/travel tickets
  • Personal Travel Insurance
  • Visa (if necessary)
  • Pre-departure information
  • Local Currency

Visa requirements

As in all EU countries, travelers only need a holiday visa to visit France.

Currency
Euros. Google Currency Converter

Weather Conditions
In Autumn, weather can be unpredictable. Cool temperatures but sunny days ranging from 10°C to 25°C. Forecast by Weather.com

Clothing tips
Travellers should be well prepared with hiking shoes and clothes, as well as a windbreaker jacket and warmer clothes.

Electricity & adaptors
Current: 220-240 V
Plugs: Two prong plugs, types C, E and F

Health & safety considerations
Insurance provided by your incoming tour operator. It is advised that all guests take out personal travel insurance to cover any unforeseen expenses (especially medical and accident) that may occur.

  • Any concerns specific to the country that guests should be aware of
  • Is the tap water drinkable (and can guests bring their own water bottle?)
  • Anything else?

ON ARRIVAL

Download the final tour itinerary here and view the route map

Transportation
Exact time and place of pick-up and drop-off will be at 10 a.m at Montpellier airport. Participants may also be picked up from St Roch, Montpellier station.

Accommodation
Accomodation during the trip will consist of single rooms with individual bathrooms in a 3 star Hotel.

Towels and bed linen are provided.

Tipping

Tipping is not mandatory in France.

Food

Travellers will have the chance to try typical local products such as goat, cow and sheep’s cheese, chestnut specialties, aligot (potatoes with cow cheese), sausage, beef and lamb.

Your Tour Leader

Your MEET tour leader will meet you upon your arrival and be with you until your departure. They will be the connection between you, the traveller, and the local people & territory, sharing their local knowledge and advice on how best to enjoy your unique experience. Their role is to ensure that all aspects of your trip run smoothly. It sometimes happens that unexpected situations may occur, in which case your leader will keep you well informed and may require your cooperation and understanding. If you have any questions or concerns at any point, they are there to assist you, so don’t hesitate to ask!

USEFUL PHRASES IN FRENCH

Basic greetings:

English French
Hello Bonjour
Good evening Bonsoir
Goodbye Au revoir
See you tomorrow A demain
Please S’il vous plaît
Excuse me / sorry Excusez-moi / pardon
Thank you Merci beaucoup
You’re welcome De rien
Have a good day Bonne journée
Enjoy your meal Bon appétit
Cheers Santé

 

Introducing yourself:

English French
Hello, my name is… Bonjour, je m’appelle…
What is your name? Comment vous appelez-vous?
How are you? Comment allez-vous?
Nice to meet you A demain
I come from Italy, Spain, Germany.. Je viens d’Italie, d’Espagne,  d’Allemagne..