The 10 best walks around Gruissan

randonnées gruissan

Explore the Occitanie region and discover its treasures: here’s our selection of the best walks to do around Gruissan.

Gruissan is a small town nestled in the heart of the Narbonnaise Regional Nature Park in the Aude department. This authentic commune between land and sea is one of the region’s must-see tourist destinations. While its old village abounds in gems of Languedoc heritage, the site is also home to two marinas and the seaside resort of Gruissan-Plage.

Gruissan is a sumptuous natural setting that’s a pleasure to explore on foot. And the surrounding area is no exception, with a variety of landscapes that will appeal to lovers of rural escapades. To convince you, here’s our list of the best walks to do around Gruissan. Let’s go for a walk!

1. Around the Doul pond

randonnées gruissan

Photo credit : Alltrails

  • Duration: about 1h30
  • Distance: 6.3 km
  • Height difference: 92 m
  • Difficulty: easy
  • See the route

Close to Peyriac-de-Mer, the tour de l’étang du Doul is a lovely route through the heart of the salt marshes of the Narbonnaise Regional Nature Park. On this hike around Gruissan, you’ll be able to admire beautiful panoramic views of the surrounding area from the Berrière rock.

Here, the route takes the form of a fairly stony path. We therefore advise you to equip yourself with good shoes before, perhaps, coming across a few pink flamingos! This short itinerary is best done in the late afternoon, to enjoy the sunset and its magical reflections in the marsh water.

2. The Clape trail

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Photo credit : Alltrails

  • Duration: approx. 4 hours
  • Distance: 14.8 km
  • Difference in altitude: 414 m
  • Difficulty: difficult
  • See the route

The sentier de la Clape crosses the massif of the same name, a listed site for its landscapes and rich biodiversity. This four-hour hike around Gruissan starts at the Notre-Dame-des-Auzils parking lot. It winds its way through a variety of landscapes: garrigue, rocky canyons, forest and views of the Mediterranean coastline.

You’ll even find yourself enjoying the short « physical » sections that put your calves to the test. Quite well signposted, the sentier de la Clape is the ideal place for a summer hike… encouraged by the song of the cicadas, of course.

3. Around the Gruissan pond

randonnées gruissan

Photo credit : Alltrails

  • Duration: about 1 hour
  • Distance: 6 km
  • Height difference: 23 m
  • Difficulty: easy
  • See the route

Gruissan is a well-known seaside resort in the Aude department. Just across from the harbour is a parking lot, which serves as the starting point for this hike. The six-kilometer walk is as easy as it gets, and particularly pleasant in any season. It circles the brackish waters of the Etang de Gruissan, home to placid pink flamingos.

If you’re lucky enough to visit in winter, you’ll be able to witness their mating season. The loop offers a beautiful panorama of Gruissan and the Tour Barberousse… and the chance to treat yourself to some local fleur de sel. This star product of the region’s finest restaurants will delight the taste buds of the whole family. Yummy!

4. Le Clos Sainte-Lucie

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Photo credit : Alltrails

  • Duration: about 1h30
  • Distance: 7.7 km
  • Height difference: 65 m
  • Difficulty: easy
  • See the route

Welcome to Port-la-Nouvelle, in the Narbonnais region, famous for its long sandy beaches and ponds. This short, accessible itinerary starts at the Sainte-Lucie salt marshes. It passes through the Maison éclusière de Sainte-Lucie and runs along the Canal de la Robine for several hundred meters.

It then crosses characteristic wetlands, continues to the Saint-Antoine rock and the Vigie before returning to the starting point. All along the way, this family-friendly hike offers lovely panoramic views of the surrounding area.

Please note: our four-legged friends are not allowed on the path.

5. Walk in the Fontfroide massif

randonnées gruissan

Photo credit : Alltrails

  • Duration: approx. 2h30
  • Distance: 10.1 km
  • Difference in altitude: 213 m
  • Difficulty: easy
  • See the route

Close to Saint-André-de-Roquelongue and Bages, the dense and mysterious Fontfroide pine forest has attracted the curious for centuries. The Romans, for example, since the Domitian Way, built to link the Iberian Peninsula and Italy, runs through the forest. Monks too, as this hike around Gruissan starts from the Cistercian abbey of Fontfroide, on the edge of the pine forest.

This circuit takes just over two hours to complete, guaranteeing breathtaking panoramic views of the Corbières, the Pyrenees and the Aude coastline. Shaded, this easy trail is perfect for a summer outing with family or friends.

6. The Portel-des-Corbières vineyard circuit

Le circuit des vignes de Portel-des-Corbières

Photo credit : Alltrails

  • Duration: approx. 2 hours
  • Distance: 7.4 km
  • Height difference: 156 m
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • See the route

The Corbières massif is a mid-mountain region of limestone and schist, with a Mediterranean climate. This limestone chaos forms the transition between the Massif Central and the Pyrenees. Its terroir, known for the prestigious AOC wine of the same name, lends itself well to walking, particularly in the Portel area. In the commune’s vineyards, this hike around Gruissan offers a lovely route.

Beware, the route is particularly exposed to the wind, which can sometimes blow hard. This is ideal for grapes, but less so for hats and caps. An amusing detail: you’ll have the chance to see… llamas at the very start of the walk. A breeding farm is on your left as you arrive!

7. Lovely loop around Cap Leucate

randonnées gruissan

Photo credit : Alltrails

  • Duration: approx. 2 hours
  • Distance: 9 km
  • Height difference: 128 m
  • Difficulty: easy
  • See the route

We’re taking you to the outskirts of Leucate, to be more precise, on the Chemin des Forts. For almost ten kilometers, it links Cap des Frères to the Cap Leucate lighthouse and the town’s coastline. Cliffs, coves, small beaches, vineyards: the diversity of landscapes is remarkable. The trail around Gruissan offers magnificent views over the eight kilometers of fine sand of the seaside resort of La Franqui, which you can admire before beginning the descent to the finish parking lot.

This easy walk is perfect for a relaxing family afternoon. However, we advise you to take it in low season, as the route is one of the busiest in the region.

8. Le Gouffre de l’Œil Doux

randonnées gruissan

Photo credit : Alltrails

  • Duration: approx. 2 hours
  • Distance: 9.2 km
  • Height difference: 130 m
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • See the route

What a lovely name for a route alternating between agricultural landscapes and wooded paths in the heart of the Clape massif. Near Saint-Pierre-la-Mer, the route passes through the Oustalet sheepfold. Here you’ll find a free mini-farm and a fascinating eco-museum well worth the detour. Next, you’ll reach the famous site of L’Œil Doux, a cenote surrounded by very high limestone walls.

A cenote? A cenote is a sinkhole in a karst environment, totally or partially filled with water. This not-to-be-missed tourist spot in the local heritage is the highlight of this spectacular, fairly easy but rocky hike. Good closed-toe shoes are a must for everyone!

9. The Port Mahon loop

La boucle de Port Mahon

Photo credit : Alltrails

  • Duration: about 1h30
  • Distance: 8.4 km
  • Height difference: 38 m
  • Difficulty: easy
  • See the route

Welcome to the hamlet of l’Aragnou, a village on the banks of the La Berre river. Your journey will take you to the Port Mahon nautical base, overlooking the Etang de Bages and its salt marshes. This bucolic loop gives you the opportunity to wander along the charming little paths of the Sigean wine-growing region. The gentle gradient and the opportunity to cool off make this a family-friendly trail, and introduce the little ones to the joys of walking.

And discover the town’s heritage too: in the old town, you’ll find the Musée des Corbières. It houses a rich collection of archaeological artefacts from excavations at the Pech Maho oppidum and many other fascinating treasures.

10. Randonnée du Bouis

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Photo credit : Alltrails

  • Duration: about 1h30
  • Distance: 6 km
  • Height difference: 148 m
  • Difficulty: easy
  • See the route

Between woodland and garrigue, this hike around Gruissan starts from the Maison des Vendangeurs. It winds through the hills of the Massif de la Clape to the Combe de Tintaine stream, which you’ll cross. We can only imagine it now, but you should know that there was a Roman port here in the 1st century AD. The remains of what appears to be an ancient lighthouse can still be seen…

The sea then came crashing down on the cliffs, which formed a cove protecting sailors from the prevailing winds. Take a look at these reddish rocks: their astonishing color is due to the presence of iron oxide. Don’t miss the Tintaine noria, a well revealing the presence of a water table, and the surrounding dry-stone huts. A real step back in time!