French walking holiday activities

Walking en famille

It can sometimes be a hard sell persuading children to go on a walking holiday. However, throw in a donkey to carry your bags, a mountain yurt or a swim at the end of each day and they start to warm to the idea. And if you get a guide who knows exactly how to get young people interested in landscape, wildlife and all the natural adventures that await, your holiday is made. Or you might choose to go on a self-guided holiday, so that you don’t have to get your teens up too early.

A centre based walking holiday works well for families who don’t want to pack up each morning but, if you are happy to travel light, walking inn to inn really does add to the adventure. And most importantly, walking time, be it the joys of Mont Blanc, Mercantour or the Med, is pure family time. Something that is pretty rare these days.

Hiking ‘en hiver’

Don’t let the powder posers push you off the pistes. The snow covered slopes are for everyone. On a snowshoeing or winter walking holiday, let your guide take you to all the secret hiking spots, often used for centuries by local communities and traders. Such as in the Alpes Maritimes, where you can hike from one auberge to another without hardly meeting another soul, seeing wolf tracks in the snow, eagles soaring overhead and basking in the solace of silence. Or the enormous and exquisite Ecrins National Park, with frozen lakes to hike around, cols to conquer and white valleys to explore. Although you don’t need experience to go snow shoeing, a reasonable level of fitness helps. What is vital, however, is that you have the support of a qualified mountain guide. You don’t mess with the mountains in winter.

Two for the price of one

There are more and more walking holidays for people who want to combine it with another activity, or learn a new skill. Seeing Provence or the Pyrenees by hiking the hills is one thing, but you savour all their specialties by learning to cook there too. Or you can seek mindfulness on yoga and hiking holiday overlooking the Med – although it sounds pretty blissful to start with.
Combining yoga and hiking on holiday is my idea of nirvana. salute the sun, walk under its rays, and then meditate as it bids farewell for the day.

Our top France walking Holiday

Guided walking holidays in the French Alps

Guided walking holidays in the French Alps

Catered Chalet Based Guided Walking in the Giffre Valley

From £829 8 days ex flights
Small group travel:
Travel Team
If you'd like to chat about France walking or need help finding a holiday to suit you we're very happy to help.
To walk in France and not keep a watchful eye out for its wildlife is to miss out on some crucial joie de vivre.

Wildlife wonders

Walk quietly and keep your eyes and ears open for elegant Ibex and, thankfully, now treasured chamois, in the Alps. There are even a few brown bear in the Pyrenees, with rare sightings. Sightings of wolf are also rare, but in the high mountains of the Mercantour, you may be lucky enough to hear them. And of course, butterflies, birds and the bees just fuel our francophone love affair.
Written by Catherine Mack
Photo credits: [Page banner: Nicolas Cool] [Walking en famille: Jerome Bon] [Wildlife wonders: gaikokujinkun]