A journey through both geological time and history, exploring the medieval village of Sauve and the chaos of the Mer des Rochers.
Calculated time is computed with the distance, the height difference, and an average speed of 2.2 mph. For an intermediate walker, this time includes small breaks.
Visit the village of Sauve located in the Gard between Quissac and Saint Hippolyte du Fort on the D999.
Park outside the village at the large shaded car park on the edge of the Vidourle, cross the bridge and follow the yellow markings.
Take the narrow streets and alleys above the village to find the signs indicating the Mer des Rochers, and don’t hesitate to wander through the charming medieval city on the way up.
Follow the markings as they gradually leave the village and emerge onto a limestone plateau embedded in the scrubland.
After a small horizontal portion we come to a sign providing directions; take the right fork (1) - yellow markings - in the direction of “les escaliers" leading to the the heart of the hike, the most spectacular part of the Mer des Rochers where the marked trail leads into chaos, with a sundial that was built on a small promontory.
The trail arrives at a further sign, turn left towards the Aven (2), the path will gradually expand to become a track.
A few hundred metres further on, turn left towards the Aven (3) located soon after on the right.
Remain cautious, the edges of the Aven do not have barriers.
Continue on the path to the next crossroads, then continue towards Roquevaire with the option to do a round trip of 200 to 300 m towards Plan Cabane (4) where several mazets (small buildings) are grouped together.
Returning to the main path, the road will soon pass between dry stone walls and along the side of Castle Roquevaire to finally reach the sign for the Mer des Rochers.
Pass through from point (1) to (2) crossing the chaos and at the end, this time take the direction of “les escaliers" (5); this beautiful stone path leads into the village.
Have another wander through the alleys, archways and other places sheltered by the buildings, and why not rest a while on the terrace of a bar or restaurant and enjoy the cool of the evening.
D/A : mi 0 - alt. mi 0
1 : mi 0.5 - alt. mi 0.5 - Head to the right
2 : mi 0.76 - alt. mi 0.76 - To the left
3 : mi 1.29 - alt. mi 1.29 - Towards the Aven
4 : mi 1.54 - alt. mi 1.54 - In the direction of Plan Cabane
5 : mi 2.6 - alt. mi 2.6 - Stairs
D/A : mi 3.4 - alt. mi 3.4
This walk is to be avoided in the hottest hours of the day, it can be a very nice evening hike after 18:00.
On the Lapiaz take care to stay on marked trails because it is easy to get lost in this type of landscape without clear landmarks.
Remain cautious on the edge of the Aven, explored by Alfred Martel.
We advise taking IGN maps with you on this walk. Click here to buy : 2742ET.
Hikideas and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.
The medieval city: the Mole tower, the Capuchin convent, Hotel de la Monnaie...
Musée de la Fourche museum of rural life.
The creators’ galleries.
Located between Nimes and Montpellier, the village of Saussines has a quite exceptional heritage: a listed 12th century church, a castle, beautiful mansions, old washhouses.
The gorse scrubland is close by with six capitelles (1), a nature trail, a picnic area with tables and is close to a spring at the high point of the circuit, plus there is a beautiful view of the Pic Saint Loup and the Cevennes.
Important note: Ignore the numbers marked on the ground and stick to the VisoRando instructions instead
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Note: To help with orientation, "tricky" sections have been highlighted with blue dotted markers.
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