Hiking from Castellane to Rougon along the Roman Way

Discover a magnificent hiking from Castellane to Rougon, in the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence. This historic trail, which follows the ancient Roman road, will immerse you in an imposing landscape and transport you through history.

In the heart of the Gorges du Verdon

The walk begins in Castellane, a picturesque village nestling at the confluence of three valleys, which is also the starting point for white-water activities. After admiring the medieval streets and the citadel overlooking the town, you set off along the Roman road. To do this, you need to follow the D952 in the direction of the Gorges du Verdon. At ‘La Salaou’, turn right towards ‘La Colle’. At the first junction, turn left towards ‘Villards Brandis’. You’re on the right track! This path, signposted GR4, guides you through spectacular scenery, offering breathtaking views of the Gorges du Verdon.

Hiking from Castellane to Rougon – In the footsteps of the past

As you walk along, you’ll discover the remains of the Roman era, witness to a rich past. The milestones that once lined the route are still there, reminding you of the grandeur of the Roman Empire. Let your imagination wander and imagine the Roman legions marching over these same stones more than 2,000 years ago.

Wild, unspoilt nature

The trail takes you through a variety of landscapes, alternating between fragrant scrubland, holm oak forests and breathtaking cliffs. You’ll have the chance to observe some exceptional flora and fauna, including majestic birds of prey and wild orchids.

Chapelle Saint-Jean-Baptiste de Chasteuil: an architectural gem in the heart of the Gorges du Verdon

Still on the way to Rougon, be sure to stop off and visit this chapel. Perched on a rocky outcrop overlooking the hamlet of Chasteuil, the Chapelle Saint-Jean-Baptiste offers a stunning panoramic view of the Gorges du Verdon. Dating from the 12th century, this Romanesque chapel is an architectural treasure trove and a haven of peace for hikers and history buffs alike.

Hiking from Castellane to Rougon – A journey through time

As soon as you approach the chapel, you’ll be charmed by its peaceful atmosphere. Built of dry stone, it blends harmoniously into the surrounding landscape. Its single nave and semi-circular apse bear witness to the sobriety and robustness of Provençal Romanesque architecture.

A rich heritage

Step through the entrance gate and you’ll discover a simple, uncluttered interior. The thick, whitewashed walls and dirt floor give the chapel an authentic atmosphere conducive to contemplation.

Don’t miss the remains of the murals that once adorned the chapel walls. Although weakened by the passage of time, these murals offer a valuable insight into the religious art of the Middle Ages.

A place of pilgrimage

The Chapelle Saint-Jean-Baptiste has long been a place of pilgrimage for the inhabitants of the surrounding villages. People came here to pray to Saint John the Baptist, patron saint of children and travellers, for his protection and blessing.

Even today, the chapel retains an aura of spirituality that invites contemplation and meditation.

A site not to be missed

Whether you’re a history buff, a nature lover or simply looking for a peaceful place to recharge your batteries, the Chapelle Saint-Jean-Baptiste de Chasteuil is well worth a visit. This unique chapel, nestling in the heart of the Gorges du Verdon, will transport you back in time and leave you with an unforgettable memory.

Hiking from Castellane to Rougon – Chasteuil

The hamlet of Chasteuil, nestling on a rocky promontory, invites you to take a well-deserved break. Enjoy the breathtaking views over the Gorges du Verdon and savour the tranquillity of this peaceful spot. You can also plan a stopover at the Chateau.

A grand finale

The last part of the hike crosses the Suech plateau – watch out for the patous in summer. This route takes you to the village of Rougon, perched on the hillside. Overlooking the valley, this village offers breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains. Let yourself be charmed by its picturesque streets and authentic atmosphere.

Practical information

-Distance: 22 km

-Difference in altitude: 800 metres

-Duration: 5 to 6 hours

-Level: Difficult

Recommendations: Bring comfortable hiking boots, water, sun cream and a hat. Most of the trail is shaded, but it is important to protect yourself from the sun, especially in summer.

Hiking from Castellane to Rougon along the Roman road is an unforgettable experience that will allow you to discover the wonders of the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence. With its magnificent scenery, fascinating history and picturesque villages, this walk is sure to delight all lovers of hiking and heritage.

Additional tips

You can extend your walk by continuing on to the village of Moustiers-Sainte-Marie, famous for its earthenware.

If you’d like to explore the Roman road in its entirety, you can follow the route from Moustiers-Sainte-Marie to Castellane, a distance of around 44 km.

There is plenty of accommodation available in Castellane, Rougon and Moustiers-Sainte-Marie.

Please ask at the tourist office in Castellane or Rougon for more information about this walk.

I hope this description has given you some idea of the route.