The 7 Best Hiking Trails in Gerardmer (Beautiful Hikes and Walks in Gerardmer)


Last Updated on 02/09/2022 by Alfred

To explore the surroundings of the “pearl of the Vosges,” discover our selection of the best hiking trails in Gérardmer!

Gérardmer is a town bordered by a large lake and many forests in the heart of the Vosges. To stay there is to take a breath of fresh air! Thanks to its ski resort, the city has been a favorite spot for a long time by lovers of outdoor activities.

Gérardmer is first known for winter sports. And fantastic cinema is celebrated at an annual international festival every year. But Victor’s brother, Abel Hugo, nicknamed it the “pearl of the Vosges.” It is all for its picturesque natural environment.

Between lakes, passes, and forests, the surroundings of Gérardmer are a beautiful setting of nature. To explore these gentle Vosges landscapes, we have written a guide to the most beautiful and best hiking trails in Gérardmer!

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The 7 Best Hiking Trails in Gerardmer (Beautiful Hikes and Walks in Gerardmer)

1. The tour of Lake Gerardmer

○ Duration: about 1h30

○ Distance: 5.3 km

○ Height difference: 86 m

○ Difficulty: Easy

Here is the most unmissable walk around Gérardmer! This small country walk will take you to discover the large lake so characteristic of the city. It lives over the seasons, sometimes adorned with green, red, and even a mysterious veil of mist. You will enjoy this little hike in any season!

Accessible to all but not recommended for strollers, the route crosses various settings. It will finish convincing you that in Gérardmer, the city and nature live in perfect harmony.

2. The Mérelle Observatory and Lake Gérardmer

○ Duration: about 2h30

○ Distance: 7.7 km

○ Height difference: 296 m

○ Difficulty: Medium

This hike will allow you to discover the lake differently. At first, you will start a lake tour along its peaceful waters. But you’ll settle for three-quarters of this round to climb to height!

A slight ascent by the bed of a stream will allow you to reach the observatory of Mérelle. From the top of this watchtower, the view of the lake is breathtaking! By the way, you will discover the waterfall of Mérelle and a ferruginous spring before descending by the opposite flank.

3. From Lake Gérardmer to the Col de Sapois

○ Duration: about 2h15

○ Distance: 7.1 km

○ Height difference: 321 m

○ Difficulty: Difficult

With this entire hike, you will have an excellent overview of the sites of interest around Gérardmer. You will start from the lake and climb to the top of the Mérelle Observatory. You can then enjoy a breathtaking view of the lake from the heights! The most motivated will be able to make a detour by the waterfall of Mérelle and the ferruginous spring.

The loop will take you to the Col de Sapois, a pretty green summit culminating at 835 meters. Finally, you will return to the famous waterfall of the Saut de la Bourrique. This one takes its name from a legend. A donkey threw itself on brigands who were trying to attack its master and perished with them in the waterfall.

4. The Col de Sapois and the Saut de la Bourrique

○ Duration: 1h

○ Distance: 3.1 km

○ Height difference: 116 m

○ Difficulty: Easy

This short and easy hike southwest of Gérardmer is an alternative to the previous route. The short walk will first take you along the river to climb the Saut de la Bourrique waterfall.

Before descending along the road and meadows, you will then reach the Col de Sapois and its gentle pastures. This short walk is very accessible. But beware of passing by the roadside if children accompany you!

5. The Saut de la Bourrique by the chemin de l’Urson

○ Duration: about 1h40

○ Distance: 5.1 km

○ Height difference: 174 m

○ Difficulty: Easy

Like many routes around Gérardmer, this hike is perfect for families. Indeed, it is a relatively short and easy loop that some appreciate for running. You will be most of the time in the undergrowth. Thus, it is particularly palpable on gray days or the contrary to shelter during the great heat.

Between majestic conifers, ferns, and rocks, you will enjoy an environment full of charm. The path of the Urson will make you meander along a lively torrent. Finally, as a highlight, you can admire the pretty waterfall of the Saut de la Bourrique.

6. The loop of the path of the Gourrier fountain and the Head of Grouvelin

○ Duration: about 3h20

○ Distance: 9.5 km

○ Height difference: 347 m

○ Difficulty: Medium

A little longer than the previous hikes, this loop starts from La Mauselaine. The difficulty is at a moderate level. It will take you to the heart of the ski area and the woods, where you will enjoy bucolic landscapes at will. But above all, you will climb the highest point of the Vosges, the Tête de Grouvelin, at 1,137 meters above sea level. From here, you can see a beautiful panorama.

During the walk, you can take a gourmet break. There are two options—first, the inn of Grouvelin, with the false air of a mountain chalet. It serves traditional dishes.

Then, La Chaume Francis, a rather friendly ski resort canteen.

7. The Rock of Bioquets and the Head of Grouvelin

○ Duration: about 2h30

○ Distance: 7.7 km

○ Height difference: 293 m

○ Difficulty: Easy

Here is another little easier walk to discover the Tête de Grouvelin and its surroundings. In the heart of the La Croix Claudé ski area, you will take pleasant trails to the Rock of Bioquets.

From here, you will enjoy the first nice panorama of green landscapes. You will then reach the Tête de Grouvelin before returning to your starting point. Both accessible and mountainous, this hike is one of our favorites in the area!

Gérardmer and its surroundings are full of accessible and family walking routes. These will allow you to explore all facets of the region. From the lake to the mountains to the forests and waterfalls! We hope you liked our article on the best hiking trails in Gerardmer.

Alfred

Alfred is the author behind the Travelvibe travel blog and is always searching for the quieter, less-visited corners of the world.

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