Welcome to the Camargue, a vast wetland with many different aspects, a place where bulls, Camargue horses, pink flamingos and other migratory birds all live side by side. On board your hired boat, cruise down the Rhône and explore an area of unique natural heritage.
The Camargue Regional Park
During your holiday in the Camargue, take a trip through the Camargue Regional Park. Listed as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve because of its wealth of flora and fauna, it’s a treat for every nature-lover. It covers an area of more than 800 km2 and offers a wide variety of outstanding landscapes: sandy beaches, reed beds, rice-paddies and wheat fields, saltmarshes and the wide open sea.
So many landscapes, so many ways to visit them! To really get the flavour of the park, take a horseback tour offered by a local ranch. If you’re not keen on riding, you could choose one of the many footpaths or cycle ways. And if you’re feeling adventurous you could opt for a safari in a 4x4.
You can’t explore the Camargue without visiting a ‘manade’ – a ranch where a free herd of bulls and Camargue horses is driven by herdsmen called ‘gardians’. There are over 500 manades in the Camargue so there are plenty to choose from! Some offer tours of their territory in a horse-drawn carriage, others do horseback tours for groups or individuals, with a picnic etc. You can see how the gardians work, how they raise the Camargue bulls, and you can watch one of the legendary brandings. We guarantee it’s the real thing!
Arles in September: The Rice Festival, Horse Festival & Camargue Gourmande
Head for Arles where there are some brilliant events taking place in late summer.
From 9 to 11 September, the Rice Festival celebrates the culture of Arles and offers bullfighting shows and bull games by the local bullfighting school. On the evening of 10 September, the Horse Festival will be putting on a free show in the arena with a variety of equestrian demonstrations such as stunt riding and dressage. Meanwhile, in the Place de la République, Camargue Gourmande will present its Camargue rice, local olive oil, AOC-protected meats, organic fruit and vegetables, honey, cheeses and other local produce.
Swap your barge for a little white horse and come and enjoy life in the Camargue!