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Hiking in the Jura Mountains

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Homepage > France > Hiking in the Jura Mountains
  • Duration: 7 Nights
  • Difficulty: Level 3
  • Tour Type: Self Guided
  • Availability: Daily from April to 30th September
  • Location: Arbois
Tour Details

The Jura mountains are calling, isn’t it about time you answered their call?  Travel to one of the most beautiful regions of France for this fantastic week-long walking holiday in the Jura mountains. Where are the Jura mountains I hear you ask? The “Reculées” as they are known locally, are in eastern France close to the border with Switzerland. We have graded this self guided walking holiday in France as Level 3 meaning that walking between 5 and 8 hours a day some walking experience will truly make this trip one to remember.

The ‘Reculées’ (literally: moved back), are deep and narrow valleys bordered by cliffs and high steep walls coming to dead ends and at the base of which, you will always find a cave or an underground waterway which brings to life a river, which then occupies the bottom of the valley. During this hiking vacation in France, you will see constant reminders of the impact that the ice age had on this part of France.

The Jura Mountains were created at the end of the ice age by a progressive glacial retreat of the beginning of the valley to inside the plateau, as a result of strong frosts and the erosion of the plateau by the underground rivers that tirelessly eat away at the calcareous basement. This created a stunning natural landscape that is truly breath-taking. You will see the destructive effects of the water by visiting one of these caves and will be surprised by these famous “potholes” connected by small channels. You will discover these beautiful places while walking at the bottom of the valley or along cliffs.

To answer their call, book now to travel with us to the untamed Jura Mountains!

Starting Location


Price Includes

  • 7 nights bed and breakfast in 2 / 3 star hotels or guest houses
  • 2 Dinners (nights 1,5)
  • Information Pack
  • Maps and walking instructions
  • Luggage transfers
  • Navigation by Smart Phone App

Price Excludes

  • Transport before and after tour
  • Single Rooms
  • Flights
  • Entrance to Attractions
  • Travel Insurance
Trip Info


Walks of between 5 and 8 hours a day with ascents up to 700 m. Some hiking experience is advisable. A reasonable level of fitness and some stamina are required for these walks. You may cover long distances in the remote countryside and the terrain will be rough underfoot. In mountainous areas, you will encounter some sustained ascents and descents.


2 and 3 star selected hotels and guest houses

Travel Insurance

It is a requirement of booking this tour with Hooked on Walking that you have suitable travel insurance which covers you for the chosen activity and for emergency evacuation and hospital care.


Day 1Arrival to ARBOIS

Arbois is at the threshold of one of most beautiful ‘reculées’ of the Jura, this small picturesque city, very dear to Pasteur, is also the capital of the wines of the Jura. There, you will discover the castle Bontemps, the residence of the counts of Bourgogne, St Just’s church whose bell-tower dominates the city and old houses along Cuisance River.

Day 2Reculée of Planches 14.4 miles 23 km

This dead-end valley is due to the collapsing of underground galleries eroded away by Cuisance that is fed by the runoff from the Jurassic plateau. You will rejoin this ‘reculée’ through the villages of Mesnay and Les Planches, before discovering the Cave of les Planches where Cuisance River continues its destructive work and the cascade of the Tufs. Then climb on the edge of the plateau to discover splendid sights of this steep-sided valley. Hotel in Arbois.

Day 3ARBOIS – POLIGNY 13.1 miles 21 km

You will leave Arbois through the vines to join Pupillin, small wine village with its Gallo-Roman site; Fanum (villa and temple). Later, you will walk to the bottom or to the first slopes of these vines and forests covered cliffs to join Poligny, capital of Comté, famous for the Jurassic cheese. But the day is not over yet. We entice you to discover the beautiful and narrow valley ‘Culée de Vaux’ and climb onto its cliffs to better appreciate the small town of Poligny from the panoramic view-point of the Belvedere of la Croix du Dan.

Day 4POLIGNY – CASTLE CHALON 15.6 miles 25 km.

After having visited the charming city of Poligny, you will go to the Jurassic vineyard and go through wine villages such as Mury, Passenans, Frontenay and Menetru as well as the vineyard before reaching Château-Chalon. This small village is proudly perched atop a rocky outcrop, which takes meticulous care of its vineyard. Here they produce the famous yellow wine!


Leaving Château-Chalon to go through the woods towards a new ‘reculées’. You will reach Blois sur Seille and climb to a first view-point (belvedere) to admire the cirque of Ladoye. Later, you will then continue through the countryside to go at the edge of the cliff that overhangs the small village of Blois. Grange sur Baume is your next stop where you will come across, a top cliff, a trail which will lead you towards several viewpoints (belvederes) from where you will discover the splendid cirque of Balsam les Messieurs. After having enjoyed it, you will go back down to the village of Baumes Les Messieurs


You will begin the day with a visit to the caves of Baumes. Throughout the underground course, you will admire immense rooms and marked out galleries of varied concretions and scintillating lakes with transparent water. When exiting the cave, you will walk along the river to go and see the cascade of the Tuffs and come across the village of Baumes Les Messieurs. You will visit a famous abbey founded during the 6th century by an Irish monk and of which one of the abbots founded Cluny in the 10th century. About 1150, the abbey of Baumes is brought back to the row of priory clunisien.

Once Cluny’s mother, turned into its daughter, the abbey never accepted completely this destiny and revolted regularly during centuries readily forgetting monastically rules. The revolution drove out the last monks in 1790. Then you will come upon Lons le Saulnier through the countryside, the forests and the charming and picturesque villages of Lavigny, Pannessieres and Perrigny.

Day 7LE CREUX DE REVIGNY  13.5 miles  24 km

Arriving at the village of Perrigny and, through the forest, will come across the hermitage Ste Anne, the viewpoint of the Limes and the viewpoint of the Guillotine dominating the hollow of Perrigny. You will move along the cliff edge and go down towards Conliege while crossing the tunnel of the 100 steps. Later, you continue through the hamlet of Vatagna and the charming village of Montaigu, clinging to the edge of the plateau, before you come upon Lons Le Saulnier.

This city does not have much left of its architectural remains, testimonies of a history that began well before the Roman occupation, destroyed by a gigantic fire during the 17th century. You will nevertheless take pleasure strolling down the streets, especially down the famous ‘Rue du Commerce’ with its arcades or down the thermal park. Hotel in Lons le Saulnier.


Depart after breakfast.


How to get there

By Plane or train to Paris and then from Paris Gare de Lyon a TGV to Dôle or Dijon where you can  connect from to Mouchard and then to Arbois (around a 4 hour-journey)

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