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Hike through the Areuse Gorges in the Val de Travers

Noiraigue - Gorges de l'Areuse - Boudry

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Hike through the Areuse Gorges in the Val de Travers

Noiraigue - Gorges de l'Areuse - Boudry

Published on 12.01.2016 by GabrielleMerk - Tour Date: 12.05.2015

Of the many gorges found in the transition area between the Jura mountains and the Swiss middle land (Devil’s Gorge, Verena Gorge, Taubenloch Gorge, Twannbach Gorge, Gorges de l'Orbe), the Areuse Gorges near Boudry are some of the more imposing ones. Mighty cliff formations provide the backdrop for this nature show. Nearby, the horse-shoe shaped Creux du Van canyon dominates the scenery. It is simply grandiose.

The hike through the Areuse Gorges begins in Noiraigue in the Val de Travers and winds along the Areuse River past a number of cascades (Saut de Brot, Chute de la Verrière), over several bridges (including one which was exhibited at the Expo in 2002), through light-dappled woods and across a clearing at Champ-du-Moulin, notably Jean Jacques Rousseau’s (a Swiss philosopher) place of refuge for three years after his banishment from Paris for his ideas on raising kids.

Before starting on the tour it might be interesting to note that the Val de Travers is considered the birthplace of Absinthe, which is also worked into chocolate. The chocolate and liqueur is sold in the Noiraigue Train Station shop and is worth a try.

Along the trail are two particularly impressive sections of cliff walls with the river rushing through. The trail is well built out with stairs, bridges and guard rails along the narrow walkway hewn out of the cliff walls. Another must-see is the large cavern in an overhang on a short uphill path off the main trail shortly before reaching the second gorge.

This tour is an ideal refuge for a hot summer day, as you basically disappear into this magical place with no sense of there even being an outside world.



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Published on 12.01.2016 by GabrielleMerk - Tour Date: 12.05.2015

Route Details 

Time Required
3 hours 15 minutes
11 km
109 m
347 m
Season Start / Season End
April - November
Level of Difficulty (Hiking)
Points of Interest
Gorges x2, Cavern on a side trail, Cascades at Chute de la Verrière. Try the Absinthe Chocolate sold in the Noiraigue station shop.
Starting Point
Train Station Noiraigue
Starting Point with Public Transport
Train Station Boudry
Return with Public Transport
Places to Eat
Noiraigue, Champ-du-Moulin, Boudry

Details about this tour 

  • Link to map with elevation profile
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  • Google Map with Route-Track
  • Route Description
  • Printing the tour

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