The Foothills of the Alps

Hiking on Les Trois Becs ©

Between Provence and the Alps lie the foothills (or the Pre-Alps), where the hills rise up, the altitude increases a little, the vegetation is a mix of Mediterannean and alpine. A land of deep rocky limestone gorges, soaring cliffs and grassy plateaus

The most famous area is the Vercors massif, to the north of Provence, which dominates the city of Grenoble. At around 1000m, this region gives fabulous hiking spring, summer and autumn, with each season bringing its unique character to the hikes

Dominated by the incredible Mont Aiguille, the southern Vercors is my favourite for its easy access by train and the wealth of different hikes right out the hotel door: from valley strolls to rugged climbs we'll always have breathtaking views to reward us for our efforts.  

The Mont Aiguille in the Vercors

There is also the Diois, the gentle hills and villages based around rhe town of Die, known for the sparking sweet wine Clairette de Die. Here are to be found some real  hiking gems, such as the Sucettes de Borne, and the Glandasse plateau. 

Also fitting the category of foothills are the Alpes de Haute Provence, a broad region encompassing the quiet and undeveloped pastoral passes and peaks between the eastern edge of Provence and the alpine capital of Gap. Here we can explore really exciting trails through oak and beech forest, where squirrels, foxes and wild boar live undisturbed, emerging to surprising rocky summits overlooking fields of lavender

Orchid ©trekkinginthealpsandprovence.comBee Orchid ©

The foothills can be combined with a few days in Provence....3 days each for example. This makes for a really varied trip, not just for hiking but also for the culture, flora and fauna and of course the food. The only limit is your imagination!

Ibex ©

Le Pas de l'Aiguille au Vercors ©


Valence, Lyon, Grenoble

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