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An Insider’s Guide to the Hidden Wonders of France

View of Gorges du Verdon from the Pont Galetas bridge in the south of france

If you’re on the hunt for spectacular hidden wonders of France, the ultimate one has to be the majestic Gorges du Verdon, located in the picturesque South of France. Gorges du Verdon, also known as the Verdon Gorge in English, is fondly nicknamed the “Grand Canyon of France”. It is, in fact, the largest and deepest canyon in Europe.

Gorges du Verdon is one of the best places to visit in the South of France. It’s about two hours from most nearby cities, so I highly recommend making a whole day out of it by visiting a few of the charming nearby villages.

This incredible natural wonder is one of my favorite places to visit each summer. I love taking friends and family who are visiting here since it’s not the easiest place to get to, but it’s definitely worth the journey. Continue reading to discover everything that makes this place one of the best hidden wonders of France!

Quick Facts

Category Details
Location Southeastern France
Region Alpes-de-Haute-Provence
Depth 700 meters (2100 feet)
Activities Rock climbing, kayaking, electric boating
Who Sports enthusiasts, families
Distance from Nice 85 miles

The Significance of Gorges du Verdon

View of Gorges du Verdon from the Pont Galetas bridge in the south of france
Brittney Liu / ViaTravelers

Gorges du Verdon is the deepest gorge in France, making it one of the top must-see natural wonders in the country. Cliffs surrounding the gorge range from 600 feet to a soaring 2300 feet tall. The gorge eventually leads to the gorgeous Lac de Sainte-Croix, a manmade reservoir and popular swimming spot.

Visitors can admire the gorge from above, either by car or by bike. For an even closer look, the gorge hosts a plethora of watersports, including kayaking, paddleboarding, and electric boating. Fishing is not permitted in the gorge but is permitted for some species in Lac de Sainte-Croix.

Best Time to Visit

Aerial view of Gorges Du Verdon in FranceAerial view of Gorges Du Verdon in France
Grigory Bruev / Adobe Stock

Undoubtedly, the best time to visit the Gorges du Verdon is summer. The stunning turquoise water absolutely stuns in the summer months.

Since much of the water is snow run-off from the mountains, it’s pretty chilly for most of the year. Summertime is your best bet for enjoying the water.

If you don’t plan to swim in the gorge, then I recommend driving around it in the fall. It is absolutely lovely to see the gorge against the backdrop of changing fall leaves, and there are plenty of places to stop along the way.

See Related: Most Beautiful Small Towns in France

How to Get There

The view from the winding road adjacent to the Gorges du Verdon in FranceThe view from the winding road adjacent to the Gorges du Verdon in France

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