Adventures / Wild Hikes

Trek the Pyrenees from France to Spain

Complete the Gavarnie-Ordesa Circuit in a challenging hut-to-hut trek through some of Europe's most spectacular scenery

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Trip Ref #9406

Adventures / Wild Hikes

Trek the Pyrenees from France to Spain

Complete the Gavarnie-Ordesa Circuit in a challenging hut-to-hut trek through some of Europe's most spectacular scenery

DURATION

4 nights

LOCATION

France

ANNUAL LEAVE

3 days off work

GROUP SIZE

Up to 8 people

MEETING POINT

Luz St Sauveur

ACCOMMODATION

Hostel · Mountain hut · Guesthouse

DIFFICULTY

Challenging

You’ll need to be in good shape and capable of hiking between 15-20km each day with a pack on your back and gains of as much as 1000m.

Cross the border between France and Spain over the highest pass on the Santiago de Compostela trail (2200m) and through Roland’s Breach (2804m)

Visit two of the most spectacular locations in the Pyrenees, Gavarnie and the Ordesa Canyon

Sleep in remote mountain refuges and wake each day surrounded by gorgeous Pyrenean scenery

All our reviews are verified

We only invite travellers to leave a review if they have booked this trip with Much Better Adventures.

Catherine, September 2019

Everything was great!

Nina, July 2019

Sian was incredibly helpful in answering any questions before, during, and after the trip! She is lovely. Mandy, our guide, was fantastic and really catered each day to the needs of our group. The guesthouses we stayed at exceeded expectations and the food was delicious. It was a fantastic trip and I loved every second.

Included

Guides

Local, English speaking, certified guide

Accommodation

2 nights in a mountain refuge, 2 nights in a hostel

Meals

Munch on tasty food throughout

Transfers

From the start point and back again

Not Included

Travel to and from the start point

Travel insurance

Personal expenses

The Area

map

Logistics

Starts

Luz St Sauveur

Any time before 18:30 on Day 1

Ends

Luz St Sauveur

09:00 on Day 5

Transfers

Your adventure begins at your accommodation in Luz St Sauveur on Day 1. Get any flight which suits your travel arrangements provided you arrive in Luz by the evening on Day 1. Your guide will meet you at around 18:30 to brief you before the hike starts the next day.

We recommend you fly into Lourdes Airport (LDE) - which is the closest airport - or Toulouse Airport (TLS). From Lourdes Airport, there are buses to the train station and from there, connecting buses to Luz. From the airport to the train station takes around 45 minutes by car, and from the train station to Luz takes around 30 minutes; allow a little longer by bus.

From Toulouse Airport there is a shuttle bus to the train station and then regular trains to Lourdes (takes around 2 hours). From Lourdes train station, you can then get the connecting bus to Luz or a taxi for around 60€.

Your adventure will officially end at 09:00 back in Luz St Sauveur. We then suggest you then make your way back to the airport - again either Lourdes Airport (LDE) or Toulouse Airport (TLS) are the best option. Your host can help you arrange this after booking.

Travel options

The closest airports are Lourdes (LDE) or Toulouse (TLS.)

What about all the carbon?

We've crunched the numbers to work out the total carbon footprint of this trip, and plant enough trees to suck 2x as much back out the atmosphere.

Day 1

Hostel · Mixed dorm

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 2 – Day 3

Mountain hut · Mixed dorm

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 4

Guesthouse · Mixed dorm

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 5

Departure day

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

What is the food like?

Breakfasts will be basic but filling, usually featuring bread, jam and tea/coffee, and cakes in Spain. Dried fruit is often available and you can always bring a bag of oats if you like muesli. Lunch will be a picnic and dinners are excellent - three and sometimes even four courses. Expect soup before your main meal and sometimes cheese and then dessert. If you have any dietary requests, let your host know in advance and they will do their best to accommodate them.

What is the accommodation like?

Luz St Sauveur

You'll stay at the comfortable Gite Le Regain in Luz St Sauveur, a charming and traditional house nicely renovated as a hostel. The guesthouse offers small dorm rooms, each with their own bathroom.

The Pyrenees

You'll sleep in mountain refuges in lovely locations. First up will be the Refuge Lucien Briet in the centre of Torla where you'll stay in a comfortable dorm with a communal bathroom. This will be followed by Refuge Goriz in a large dorm with a separate toilet block and cold showers outside.

Day 1

Luz St Sauveur

Head to the quaint mountain village of Luz St Sauveur, a place steeped in history and surrounded by beautiful scenery. Check into your comfortable hostel and meet your host for a briefing about the adventure ahead followed by dinner with the rest of your team.

Day 2

The Bucharo Pass (2200m)

Hiking

8-9hrs · 10km · 1450m up · 1200m down

From the gorgeous village of Gavarnie, trek deeper into the Pyrenees and cross the border into Spain via the Bucharo Pass (2200m.) After a picnic lunch, descend to the mountain village of Torla (1000m) - it's a long descent but there will be plenty of time to recover with dinner and a good night’s rest at a local refuge.

Day 3

The Ordesa Canyon

Hiking

7-8hrs · 12km · 1000m up

After breakfast, head toward the glacially carved Ordesa Canyon, part of the spectacular Ordesa y Monte Perdido National Park. From the plateau at the bottom, climb the steep ascent to the viewpoint at the Mirador de Calcilarruego - a natural balcony hanging 600 metres above the canyon floor - before continuing to the next refuge, this one sitting 2200m above sea level.

Day 4

Breche de Roland

Hiking

7-8hrs · 15km · 1250m up · 1450m down

Cross the Millaris Plateau and climb to the famous Breche de Roland, or Roland’s Breach (2800m,) a natural gap in the border, 40m across and 100m high. Re-enter France and begin the long descent back to Gavarnie where your transfer will be waiting to take you back to Luz for the evening.

Day 5

Home time

Enjoy a relaxed breakfast at your guesthouse before heading home or onto your next adventure in this beautiful region.

15% Off Outdoor Gear

In need of a few more items? All bookings receive a 15% discount on us to use at Cotswold Outdoor, Snow + Rock and Runner's Need.

What do I need to bring?

  • Comfortable walking boots or shoes (3 or 4 seasons, broken in)
  • 3 season sleeping bag
  • Camping/inflatable pillow
  • Two walking poles
  • Fleece
  • Waterproof jacket (or a big plastic poncho)
  • Waterproof over trousers
  • Lightweight puffer jacket for the evenings in the higher refuges
  • Warm gloves and hat (for early starts)
  • Sun hat or peaked cap
  • Sunglasses
  • One pair shorts
  • One pair lightweight walking trousers
  • Two T-shirts (anything but cotton, wool is best as it is quick to dry and doesn’t smell. Synthetic is also fine – it smells but it is quick to dry)
  • Good quality walking socks
  • 40-60 litre rucksack
  • Lightweight towel
  • Waterproof rucksack cover or waterproof bags to keep your things dry
  • Sunblock for face and lips (Factor 50)
  • Personal First Aid kit (plasters, Compeed for blisters, paracetamol)
  • Roll of toilet paper
  • Water bottle or Platypus-type hydration system – 1.5 to 2 litres
  • Penknife
  • Head torch
  • Survival blanket (light foil blanket to keep injured people warm).
  • Camera
  • Snack bars/dried fruit/chocolate
  • Waterproof map case
  • Earplugs (there are always snorers)
  • Buff (good for blocking out light and noise while sleeping, keeping your neck warm, holding your hair etc.
  • Swimsuit (your guide will do everything they can to find swimming opportunities!)
  • Mobile phone
  • Personal medicine if required (please inform your guide in case of emergency)

Extra Night in Luz

Payable Before Departure

Extra Night in Luz

Per Night

You'll need to be relatively fit and able to handle uneven terrain. If you can walk 15-20kms a day on unsteady terrain and do the same the following day you should be able to manage this hike comfortably.

Sure can! Over 50% of our travellers travel solo, it’s a great way to meet like-minded people.

The weather is usually warm, if not hot, but it can get stormy in late July-August. The weather is generally most stable and best for walking between September and October.

Any excess luggage can be safely left at your accommodation on Day 1.

Our recommended travel insurance provider is Campbell Irvine.

Travel insurance is compulsory on all of our adventures. Your insurance should include adequate protection for overseas medical treatment, evacuation/repatriation, your baggage and equipment and the specific activities involved on your adventure.

Your insurance policy should also include specific Covid-19 cover, including cancellation and curtailment cover if you, your travel companion or a close relative are diagnosed with Covid-19.

We fully endorse Campbell Irvine as their insurance offers all of the above, so get in touch with them or call on 020 7938 1734 to get your insurance sorted. We suggest that you book travel insurance as soon as you book your adventure, just to cover you for any last minute life changes. We know you’re an active lot and injuries do happen!

We automatically convert prices from the local currency that a host receives to your chosen currency. We update our exchange rates on a daily basis so this does mean that prices displayed on the site are subject to currency fluctuations, which is why you may see them change over time.

If you wish to change the currency you pay in, head to the bottom of the page.

All of our group adventures are specially designed for adults to enjoy (18+) as we want these adventures to bring together outdoorsy people who are truly like-minded. Children can be accommodated on some private departures.

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