From Maintenon to the Mare aux Fées

A Fontainebleau walk posted on 28/01/11 by will77. Update : 23/12/16

Depart from the Maison Forestière de Maintenon for a 16 km walk.

Technical sheet
Calculated time Calculated time: 4h20[?]
Distance Distance : 8.81mi
Vertical gain Vertical gain : 420ft
Vertical drop Vertical drop : 420ft
Highest point Highest point : 446ft
Lowest point Lowest point : 272ft
Average Difficulty : Average
Back to starting point Back to starting point : Yes
Walking Walking
Area Area : Forest of Fontainebleau
Location Location : Fontainebleau (77300)
Starting point Starting point : N 48.396667° / E 2.702274°
Map IGN Map (Click to buy) : Ref. M2417OT
Download : -


(D) Depart from the Maintenon forester's house (south of the château, on the right-hand side of the Maintenon path after crossing the D606). Go directly south on the Route du Petit Mont Chauvet.

After about 700m (1), continue to the right via the Route de la Plaine des Pins and cross the Rocher de Bouligny, directly south. Pass the shooting range on your right and via the Route de Vamy (2), join the GR11 on the left after 200m, which goes directly south through the Rochers Fourceau.

(3) At the Ventes Bourbon junction, turn right on the Route du Chevreuil, cross the D301 and 300m further on, turn left on the old Route de la Mare aux Fées (Fairies Pond)(4). Pass the stele (5), and continue to the Mare aux Fées that you can walk around (be careful of the fairies).

(6) Otherwise, before the Mare aux Fées, take the small path north through old trees and rejoin the Route du Chevillard(7), after crossing the D301, then right again on the GR11 to the Inspecteur viewing point (8).

From here, follow the small path opposite you, north of the viewing point, until you reach the Route de la Palette (9), on which you need to turn left to join the Mont Merle (10). It briefly follows the Aqueduct de la Vanne, before you turn right on the Route de la Fanfare(11) which you leave, turning left, immediately after a large rock.

You now follow the GR and the Denecourt and go back down the Rocher de Bouligny until you reach the Route de l'Occident (12) on which you turn right until the crossing with the Route d'Estrées where you turn left(13).

Here you follow the Denecourt (blue), which will lead you back to the car park at the forester's house (A).

You can also find some more Fontainebleau walks on Hikideas.

Waypoints :
D/A : mi 0 - alt. mi 0
1 : mi 0.54 - alt. mi 0.54
2 : mi 1.5 - alt. mi 1.5
3 : mi 2.7 - alt. mi 2.7
4 : mi 3.5 - alt. mi 3.5
5 : mi 3.87 - alt. mi 3.87
6 : mi 4.25 - alt. mi 4.25
7 : mi 4.92 - alt. mi 4.92
8 : mi 5.45 - alt. mi 5.45
9 : mi 5.65 - alt. mi 5.65
10 : mi 6.36 - alt. mi 6.36
11 : mi 6.7 - alt. mi 6.7
12 : mi 7.25 - alt. mi 7.25
13 : mi 7.66 - alt. mi 7.66
D/A : mi 8.81 - alt. mi 8.81

Useful Information

Lock your cars securely and take water as there are no fill-up points on en route.
Be careful crossing the D301 and the D148.

We advise taking IGN maps with you on this walk. Click here to buy : M2417OT.

Hikideas and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.

During the walk or to do/see around

There are shops and a station in Fontainebleau and Avon.

Other walks in the area

The “Circuit des 25 Bosses” (the 25 Bumps Circuit)
distance 9.05mi Vertical gain +702ft Vertical drop -696ft duration 4h40 Difficult Difficult
Starting point Starting point in Le Vaudoué - 77 - Seine-et-Marne

As the name suggests, is this route ascends 25 mounds that form a circuit of the of the Trois Pignons forest. A hike amid the rocks that makes an excellent training run before mountain hikes in the summer.
N.B. The elevation is underestimated: between 800 and 900 metres total cumulative change in altitude. It’s difficult to find a larger change in altitude in the Ile-de-France, unless you want to take the steps up and down the Eiffel Tower three times on the trot. Expect to be walking for 6 to 7 hours.

Sentier des Belvédères
distance 5.19mi Vertical gain +243ft Vertical drop -243ft duration 2h35 Average Average
Starting point Starting point in Noisy-sur-École - 77 - Seine-et-Marne

A course over hills, with beautiful views of the Massif des Trois Pignons. Passages on platières in the middle of the moor with an unobstructed view, interspersed with passages in undergrowth and amid boulders. A varied, rather sporty hike.
N.B. The drop is probably underestimated: expect something more in the order of 300 metres.

Hike in Fontainebleau forest: a tour of the Apremont Gorges
distance 7.27mi Vertical gain +423ft Vertical drop -427ft duration 3h40 Average Average
Starting point Starting point in Fontainebleau - 77 - Seine-et-Marne

Fontainebleau forest is one of the most beautiful French forests thanks to its varied landscapes and, in particular, its sandstone blocks. This hike circles the Apremont gorges along the Colinet-Denecourt path N°6 and lets you enjoy it in all its beauty and fragility, the latter due both to natural erosion and human use, and is near the Paris region.

distance 7.41mi Vertical gain +472ft Vertical drop -459ft duration 3h45 Average Average
Starting point Starting point in Noisy-sur-École - 77 - Seine-et-Marne

The Massif des Trois Pignons is situated on the edge of Fontainebleau forest. The walk takes you past the Rocher des Guetteurs, the Sables du Cul du Chien, the Diplodocus, and the Rocher de la Tortue.

The Rocher du Long Boyau and the Gorges du Houx
distance 6.24mi Vertical gain +236ft Vertical drop -249ft duration 3h05 Average Average
Starting point Starting point in Fontainebleau - 77 - Seine-et-Marne

From the Ermitage de Franchard, this is a very varied hike which will take you past old sandstone quarries, the Gorges du Houx and the charming Mare aux Pigeons. On the route are several vast viewing points, numerous spectacular rocks and the curious Grotte du Serment cave.

N.B. The elevation and the time shown appear to be under-estimated: count on about 250 meters and 4 hours of walking.

Les Gorges de Franchard and l'Antre des Druides
distance 3.54mi Vertical gain +171ft Vertical drop -171ft duration 1h45 Average Average
Starting point Starting point in Fontainebleau - 77 - Seine-et-Marne

Starting from an old retreat which has been visited since the 11th century, this hike allows you to explore the Gorges de Franchard and the surrounding areas. Winding through rocks and several rock shelters such as the well-known Antre des Druides.
N.B. The difference in altitude is probably higher than stated: roughly 100 metres and a 2 hour walk.

distance 14.93mi Vertical gain +682ft Vertical drop -712ft duration 7h20 Difficult Difficult
Starting point Starting point in Fontainebleau - 77 - Seine-et-Marne

Long but very nice hike station to station in the Forest of Fontainebleau. It goes through several viewpoints, ponds, little known corners, stunning scenery.

distance 4.53mi Vertical gain +364ft Vertical drop -371ft duration 2h20 Easy Easy
Starting point Starting point in Avon - 77 - Seine-et-Marne

It is a short, relatively easy circuit exploring some curiosities of the forest of Fontainebleau around the Avon SNCF train station, namely the views over the Croix du Calvaire, the Sponge Rock, Denecourt Tower and fountains. One could also call it the fountain circuit.

For more walks, use our search engine.

The GPS track and description are the property of the author.