Discover the natural wonder of Cirque de Navacelles, the “Grand Canyon of the Hérault”

Nestled between Montpellier and Millau, the Cirque de Navacelles is a natural marvel in the heart of the Cévennes. Known as the “Grand Canyon of the Hérault,” this breathtaking site offers stunning landscapes that rival the famous canyons of the American West, captivating visitors with its unique charm and grand vistas.

Cirque de Navacelles: A masterpiece of nature

Millions of years ago, the meanders of the Vis River carved deep gorges into the limestone, forming the Cirque de Navacelles. Over time, the river changed its course, leaving a vast cirque 300 metres deep and 3 kilometres in diameter. This spectacular geological formation showcases the power of erosion and the raw beauty of nature. It’s a paradise for geologists and landscape enthusiasts who love to admire it from above to appreciate its scale.

Image via Montpellier Tourism

A protected cultural and historical treasure

The picturesque villages of Navacelles and Saint-Maurice-Navacelles, which frame the cirque, are rich in ancient human history. Dry-stone constructions, cultivated terraces, and watermills tell the story of inhabitants who thrived in this rugged landscape.

Classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it benefits from strict protection measures to preserve its integrity. Visitors can explore the site via a network of marked trails that offer spectacular viewpoints without damaging the fragile environment. Local initiatives promote sustainable tourism, ensuring this extraordinary place remains beautiful for future generations.

How to get there and what to see

The Cirque de Navacelles is easily accessible by car. From Montpellier, take the A75 towards Lodève, then exit 49 towards Le Caylar. Follow the signs to the Cirque de Navacelles, driving through magnificent landscapes before arriving at spectacular viewpoints.

For visitors from Millau, take the A75 to exit 48, then follow the D9 to Alzon and the D113 to Blandas.

Two main viewpoints offer exceptional panoramas: the Baume Auriol viewpoint in Blandas and the Doline viewpoint in Saint-Maurice-Navacelles. Safe parking is available before starting your exploration on foot. Adventurous visitors can also reach the site via well-marked hiking trails.

Ready to experience the awe-inspiring beauty of the Cirque de Navacelles? Plan your visit and immerse yourself in one of nature’s most remarkable creations.

This article was syndicated from Marie Claire France
Translated and adapted by Praise Vandeh, Marie Claire Nigeria Content Writer


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