I’ve done lots of hikes in my life and I have to admit that few places I’ve visited so far can boast a beautiful scenery as the Gorges du Verdon.
The most important thing that you should know is that the Blanc-Martel trail is a one way hike and the best way to walk this iconic route is from Châlet de la Maline to Point Sublime. There is a local bus service from end to end which runs from the end of April until the end of August, which takes you first to la Palud sur Verdon (2€) and then you’ll have to wait for another to Chalet the la Maline (8€) – or the opposite way round depending on which side you decide to approach the hike. We woke up pretty early to avoid doing this walk in the hottest hours, but we ended up waiting quite a long while for the buses, so we’d recommend to drive to the finishing point and arrange for a local taxi company to pick you up from there and take you to the start. You can download all the info HERE.
Plan to start the hike no later than 9 am as in the canyon temperature can get very high, especially in the summer months. For the same reason make sure to have plenty of water – Paul and I drunk 2 L each – as there won’t be any refill opportunity during the path. At a leisurely pace this walk will take you about 7 hours, so make sure to pack some food and snacks. It goes without saying but make sure to wear hiking shoes and a proper hiking outfit. You’ll also need a flashlight (or make sure you keep enough battery on your phone) towards the end of the trail as there are two long – and very dark tunnels.
Another thing to be aware of and you’ll probably notice some warning signs on the banks about this, is that the river is controlled by a dam. At any given point, without warning, this dam could be released, causing the water to rise incredibly fast, so watch out when you linger at the water’s edge.
- Start: Chalet de la Maline
- End: Point Sublime (Park your car here)
- Length: 16 km
- Min Elevation: 1,859 m
- Max Elevation: 3,340 m
- Total Ascent: 1,481 m
- Difficulty: E (Hikers)
- Equipment: Hiking Shoes, proper hiking outfit
- Dogs Allowed: No