The Sainte Baume gorges

A splendid medieval village, a hermit and his cave, a valley in the limestone hills and the views of the Rhône Valley and Mont Ventoux.
Prepare yourself for a nice, family-friendly hike, which will suit everyone.

Technical sheet
No. 4098519
A Saint-Montan walk posted on 19/02/12 by LB_Neil. Update : 29/02/16
Calculated time Calculated time: 2h40[?]
Distance Distance : 6.44km
Vertical gain Vertical gain : 301m
Vertical drop Vertical drop : 300m
Highest point Highest point : 348m
Lowest point Lowest point : 115m
Average Difficulty : Average
Back to starting point Back to starting point : Yes
Walking Walking
Area Area : Massif central
Location Location : Saint-Montan (07220)
Starting point Starting point : N 44.440268° / E 4.624272°
Download : -


From the village of Saint-Montan, enter the gorge by the road (in the direction of Domaine d’Imbours).
Reach the chapel (1), and take the path behind it marked in yellow/white. Walk along the climbing site, and start to climb the scree.
Two thirds of the way up, you will reach a cross. Leave the marked path and slide over to the home of the hermit Montanus. Be discreet and respect the area. A guestbook is available.
Then return to the path from where you left off and follow it to the town of Larnas (2). Turn South at the intersection after the town hall, to enter the village. Heading towards the containers, find the signs, and follow to find the path.
You enter a paddock (thank you for helping to keep enclosures secure, and close the gates after passing through). Follow the trail before continuing the descent to Saint-Montan (3). Enjoy the view. Upon reaching the village, before heading onto the streets, you can go take a look at the Lourdes cave (4).
Back to the car park.

Waypoints :
D/A : km 0 - alt. 115m
1 : km 1.47 - alt. 250m - Chapel
2 : km 3.29 - alt. 306m - Larnas village
3 : km 3.95 - alt. 342m - Descent to Saint-Montan
4 : km 5.59 - alt. 162m - Lourdes cave
D/A : km 6.44 - alt. 116m

Useful Information

As is often the case in this region, there is no reliable drinking water refill point.
Good shoes, no flip flops, running shoes as a bare minimum. In the climb, the ground is slippery.
Many picnic sites.

Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.

During the walk or to do/see around

Visit the village of Saint Montan, and its castle. Numerous small artists’ shops. The Plateau de Gras offers lavender buds and derived products.
Another hike to the Dent de Rez is available (topographical route to come)

Other walks in the area

La Dent de Rez
distance 13.39km Vertical gain +503m Vertical drop -503m Durée 5h15 Average Average
Starting point Starting point in Gras - 07 - Ardèche

The high point of Basse-Ardèche, this promontory (719 m) offers a beautiful panorama of the Cévennes, Mont Lozère, the Alps, the Baronnies, Mont Ventoux and the Ridge of Montmirail.

distance 17.64km Vertical gain +482m Vertical drop -478m Durée 6h25 Average Average
Starting point Starting point in Alba-la-Romaine - 07 - Ardèche

This lovely hike offers magnificent viewpoints over the Montmirail Dentelles, Mont Ventoux, the Baronnies, the Vercors, the Montagne Ardéchoise, the Coiron, the Necks of Sceautres, of Roche Chérie, of Roche, and a 360° panoramic view from the summit of Croix Juliau.
The superb medieval hamlet of Roche is well worth the detour.

distance 7.6km Vertical gain +343m Vertical drop -346m Durée 3h10 Easy Easy
Starting point Starting point in Aiguèze - 30 - Gard

The medieval village of Aiguèze is among the most beautiful villages in France. This hike, overlooking the gorges of Ardeche, follows the paths and trails through the heart of the scrubland, olive groves and vineyards.

distance 6.67km Vertical gain +167m Vertical drop -168m Durée 2h25 Easy Easy
Starting point Starting point in Villeneuve-de-Berg - 07 - Ardèche

An easy family walk to the "Forêt des sens" (forest of senses), arboretum and interpretive trail created under the impetus of the municipal children's council. A few welcome benches punctuate this playful and instructive walk for all ages.

distance 4.34km Vertical gain +85m Vertical drop -80m Durée 1h30 Easy Easy
Starting point Starting point in Saint-Paul-Trois-Châteaux - 26 - Drôme

A family-friendly trail that explores the troglodyte village of Barry, one of the finest and largest in France.

distance 14.49km Vertical gain +490m Vertical drop -481m Durée 5h30 Average Average
Starting point Starting point in Vallon-Pont-d'Arc - 07 - Ardèche

Between Vallon-Pont-d'Arc and Saint-Remèze, this hike should be done mid-season before it become too difficult to park in "gorges de l'Ardèche" after Pont-d'Arc.The walk offers beautiful view points over the Ardèche and Tiourre valleys, the Saint-Remèze plateau then Pont-d'Arc on the trip back.

On the trails of the Ardèche Gorge
distance 12.02km Vertical gain +522m Vertical drop -519m Durée 4h55 Difficult Difficult
Starting point Starting point in Labastide-de-Virac - 07 - Ardèche

A very fine walk in the heart of the Ardèche Gorge. You will have to descend a combe and follow the river along a path, with a small section fitted with ropes and ladders. You will admire a succession of corries, cliffs, little caves, rocks, pinnacles, rapids, sandy
and pebble beaches. The cliffs are home to many birds.
You climb up again to the plateau by another fine valley, affording very impressive views of the gorge and the loops of the river .

distance 10.83km Vertical gain +362m Vertical drop -358m Durée 4h10 Average Average
Starting point Starting point in Vallon-Pont-d'Arc - 07 - Ardèche

A walk amid holm oaks along the capricious Ibie river, whose water doesn’t always flow overground.

For more walks, use our search engine.

The GPS track and description are the property of the author.