8 experiences between the earth and the sky to reconnect with nature
Ready to take a deep breath of oxygen? This summer, more than ever, we want to reconnect with nature and awaken all our senses. Swimming in a lake in the Landes region at the crack of dawn, meditating on a rocky outcrop in Normandy, walking in the skies of the Pic du Midi or contemplating the thousand-year-old volcanoes in the Auvergne, here are 8 experiences to be enjoyed to the rhythm of the sun, the wind and the water.
Refresh yourself at the edge of a waterfall in Lozère
© Lea Camilleri — Runes waterfall in Lozère
At first you hear a dull hum, and then you see ripples of water glistening in the sunlight through the leaves. In summer, in the heart of the Cevennes National Park, you can take a cool bath at the Runes waterfall: with a height of nearly 60 (197 feet) meters, it is the highest in Lozère! To reach the bottom of the waterfall, it is necessary to walk (with appropriate shoes) about 40 minutes on a steep path which goes down between granite blocks and vegetation. At the bottom, there is a surprise: the waterfall hides two waterfalls, one of 46 meters (151 feet) and the other of 24 meters (79 feet) reach two basins for double the fun.
Meditate at La Roche d'Oëtre in Normandy
© WorldElse — Panorama from the Roche d'Oëtre
Rock of OëtreSite de la Roche d Oëtre, 61430 Saint-Philbert-sur-Orne, France
It is one of those geological wonders against which one feels very insignificant... In the middle of Norman Switzerland, a land renowned for its smooth landscape, the Roche d'Oêtre plays the role of an intruder with its rocky peaks culminating at 118 meters (387 feet) above the gorges of the Rouvre: it is a remote reminder of the Breton Armorican massif. From this natural belvedere, one could stay for hours meditating in front of the green hills and hedged farmland that crisscross the horizon. As you pass by, your eye lingers on details, a human outline drawn in the stone, some rare lichens and mosses clinging to the walls or a small green lizard basking in the sun...
Contemplate the thousand-year-old volcanoes in Auvergne
© WorldElse — Puy de Dome
Puy de DômePuy de Dôme, 63870 Orcines, France
How many of them stretch from the north to the south of the Auvergne, green mamelons pointing their sharp edges towards the sky or unfolding their curves softened by the centuries? It would be futile to try to count the peaks that punctuate the Auvergne Volcanoes Regional Nature Park! It is better to choose carefully one or several observation posts to contemplate the extraordinary diversity of this landscape that has been formed by volcanic activity. Will you be able to recognize the Chaîne des Puys, the Sancy massif or the Cantal mountains? It doesn’t matter, the main thing is to push the pause button and relax…
Amazed by the Aiguilles de Bavella in Corsica
© Bruno Maltor — The Aiguilles de Bavella in Corsica
Aiguilles de BavellaAiguilles de Bavella, 20122 Quenza, France
In the heart of the regional natural park of Corsica, hold on to your camera! At the foot of the Aiguilles de Bavella, also called towers or horns of Asinao, you can take in some fresh air and count the 1001 shades of the stone. This ribbon of jagged rocks with sharp edges culminating at just over 1,800 meters (5905 feet) displays an incredible variety of colors, from light red to dark gray. It is one of the most beautiful panoramas of the famous GR 20. But if you are a novice hiker, you can take a walk starting from the Bavella pass (1218 meters/3996 feet) towards the "trou de la bombe", a geological curiosity, which will stun you like the rest!
Getting up close to the sky at the Pic du Midi
© Little Gypsy — View of the Pyrenees from the Pic du Midi
Pic du MidiPic du Midi, 65170 Saint-Lary-Soulan, France
What if we took a trip to the sky? Just climb the Pic du Midi Observatory at an altitude of 2877 meters (9439 feet)! At the top of the platform, all the mountains seem to be under our feet. On a clear day, especially in the morning, the 360° panorama extends from the Pyrenees to the plains of Occitanie and sometimes to the foothills of the Massif Central! And if there are clouds, it is the occasion to experience some new sensations: suspended above the void, a 12 meters (39 feet) long metallic footbridge invites you to walk in the sky. When the clouds form a vaporous layer under your feet, you feel like you're in paradise!
Take a forest bath in the Massif des Vosges
© Little Gypsy — Forest of the Massif des Vosges
VosgesVosges, 68380 Metzeral, France
Caressing the bark of a tree, treading the grass barefoot, smelling the scents of leaves, flowers and humus... Between fir trees, beech trees and Scots pines, the Vosges mountains are a fabulous playground to reconnect with nature and live at the heart of the forest during a great outdoor experience. All your senses are awakened as you go deeper into the forest. Listen to the little noises that signal the presence of animals, spot the traces of a passage on the ground, and observe the infinite variations of greens and textures in summer when the forest is at its peak. Beware, the forest experience is addictive!
Marvel at the site of the 4 lakes in the Jura Mountains
© Travel Me Happy — Belvedere of the 4 lakes
Rue du JuraRue du Jura, 73000 Chambéry, France
Ilay, with its small island, Narlay, small and Grand Maclu... We will not necessarily remember the names of the four glacial lakes that stretch out below the belvedere, but we will certainly remember the dazzling 360° panorama that reveals itself at 900 meters (2953 feet) of altitude. Turquoise, jade or sapphire, their colors go through all the shades, tinted here and there with green in resonance with the forests of fir trees which are reflected in their waters. When the weather is clear, we continue towards the Aigle peak: at 993 meters (3258 feet), the view embraces the Jura plateaus but also the Mont Blanc!
Rejuvenate with the first rays of the sun in the Landes
© Bestjobers — Lake Biscarrosse
Lac de Biscarrosse et de ParentisLac de Biscarrosse et de Parentis, 40600 Biscarrosse, France
The first morning of the world? It is every day in Biscarosse in the Landes! You wake up at dawn when the early birds start chirping, and then you take a few steps on the sand with bare feet. Two steps away from the ocean, not a ripple, not a wave; the lake spreads its smooth surface like a baby's skin under the first sun rays. The perfect moment to recharge your batteries with a long, very long bath- in summer the water temperature can be close to 28°!