The GR5 is a 2 600 km hiking trail going from North Sea to Mediterranean Sea. Sometimes named E2 (European trails), it crosses the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg and France with some small sections going through Switzerland and Italy. This article will focus on its most famous part: the great crossing through the French Alps from lake Geneva to Nice. A must-do for hikers, probably one of the most rewarding hiking trip in the world.
Located at the extreme South East of France, the Mercantour is a National Park covering a diversity of mountainous territories. The last section of the trail which crosses the French Alps from North to South (GR5) goes through its wonderful landscapes. The climate is alpine with Mediterranean influence: a perfect place for outdoor experiences!
Part of the Mercantour has been annexed from Italy (Sardinia) in 1860. Strong connections and cross-border projects are still running, so that a joint submission has been made to integrate the UNESCO world heritage list.
Six valleys preserved to the highest possible degree
The territory of the national park of Mercantour covers 6 valleys with some noticeable differences in terms of geology, fauna, flora and climate. The valleys are connected with multiple trails. to be explored by foot, bike, alone, with a donkey or with a guide. Mountaineering, rock climbing, canyoning are some of the activities for the more adventurous ones.