In this top you will discover the 10 sports to practice absolutely in the south of France. These activities are very diverse and reflect the sporting diversity of our beautiful southern region.
In this beginning of winter, you will not be disappointed by this Top 10 that we have "concocted" for you!
1. Skiing: with a southern accent!
Don't look for big hotels or flashy entertainment in the dozen or so small villages that make up Serre Chevalier, but you will find 250 kilometers of well-connected trails and a relaxed, laid-back atmosphere.
Located near the Italian border in the Hautes-Alpes, Serre Chevalier is further south than the better-known areas of the Savoyard Alps, but altitudes ranging from 1,200 to 2,800 meters, a north-facing position, and one-third of the entire ski area covered by one of the most extensive snowmaking systems in France ensure good skiing conditions. And being outside the "high rent district" of Haute-Savoie means that skiing and staying here is less expensive.
The lower ski runs wind through a large larch forest on the north side of a long, high ridge, while the high faces above the forests offer more challenging terrain. Skiers will find plenty of bowls, excellent tree skiing and the resort is known for its off-piste terrain.
2. The glider : strong sensation !
Are you a thrill seeker who has always dreamed of flying? Then come aboard a glider for an unforgettable experience.
Whether you are near Sisteron, Saint-Rémy les Alpilles or Avignon, you will find an airfield or a flight center ready to welcome you!
Once installed, you will be propelled like a kite in the air at more than 200 km/h and all this without engine! Being able to reach an altitude of more than 1 500 m, you will have the chance to discover the Provençal relief in a new way. Moreover and against all expectations, this activity is rather cheap, count on average 35 euros for one hour of flight.
The south of France is a unique place for hiking enthusiasts. That's why Planetazur offers you an escape in different areas of southern France not far from your home to offer you a unique stay.
As we described in our article " Discover the best yoga and hiking spots in Provence! "Hiking is a sport that can be practiced by everyone, which is why it is a great success for family vacations.
Indeed, thanks to its accessibility, it knows a real success among young people and particularly in the south of France. Indeed, there are many places where you can enjoy hiking.
Here are some examples of places you would be likely to go if you were hiking:
The loop of the Malpasset dam, Var (83)
The peninsula of Gien, Var (83)
The low gorges of Verdon, Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, Var (83)
The crests of Tanneron, Var (83)
For more details on these places, see the article on the Hiking.
The southern regions of France, Provence and the Côte d'Azur, offer excellent climbing and sport climbing sites, including the Verdon, Buoux, Ceuse and Les Calanques near Marseille.
Verdon - The beautiful Verdon valley, with its steep limestone cliffs, offers a fantastic range of climbing and sport climbing. The area is famous for its aerial abseils at the start of the main multi-pitch routes. Other routes are accessible from the valley floor, which are generally single pitch sport routes.
Buoux - The climbing at Buoux has produced many cult lines and is on a mix of limestone and sandstone rock, offering technical climbing, short roofs and steep overhangs.
Ceuse is often described as the best sport climbing site in France. Well Ceuse is certainly blessed with beautifully pocketed limestone, exceptional lines and a magical location. The majority of the routes are single pitch and the rock climbing varies enormously from overhanging jug feasts to steep technical walls.
Climbing is an ideal activity to do in the south of France. Indeed, with PlanetazurThere is a multitude of places to practice climbing with the bonus of sumptuous landscapes.
5. The Tyrolean traverse
The many natural parks of the region offer the possibility to practice the favorite activity of children: the Tyrolienne.
Included in the accrobranches courses or an attraction in its own right, the Tyrolean traverse has found its place in the Provencal sports mix. After being firmly attached, you will be transported through the forests of the Verdon, Sainte-Baume or the Préalpes d'Azur.
If you are on the Colmiane side, you can make the descent of a lifetime by flying over the ski area on the largest zip line in France.
6. Le Canyoning Indoor / Outdoor
A fabulous site located in the village of Saint-Martin-de-Vésubie in the Alpes Maritime (06), you will find an indoor canyoning center unique in Europe.
A life-size immersion in the world of canyoning with pools and a multitude of waterfalls to cross and climb. There is no age limit for access to the canyon for anyone over 10 years old.
Canyoning is a bit like backcountry skiing - there are fantastic days when everything is doable, and days when the canyons are either dry or swollen with whitewater. A flooded canyon is extremely dangerous - you can't fight the fast flowing water. In the spring, some canyons are passable without a problem, but others are fed by springs high in the mountains and the water flows dangerously fast.
These canyons are to be avoided at all costs. Everything depends on the weather conditions of the previous days. A sudden rise in temperature can mean more snowmelt. Similarly, a heavy rain in the mountains or a thunderstorm can also cause the water level to rise rapidly and the water in the canyons to be dangerously high.
However, the south of France is a world-class destination for canyoning and the Alpes-Maritimes and Alpes-de-Haute-Provence regions offer some of the best descents. The breathtaking scenery, crystal clear water and variety of canyons attract both vacationers looking for a challenging activity and canyoning enthusiasts.
7. The mountain bike (VTT)
Provence and the Southern Alps have long attracted mountain bikers from all over France, but it is only in recent years that the region has attracted visitors from further afield. With its dry trails, winter sunshine and easy transport links, the south of France is truly a biker's paradise.
The climate and geography of southern France make for great hiking all year round. In summer, choose a higher resort and enjoy the fresh air of the Alps. Spend the rest of the year on lower terrain, on trails facing the sea.
You'll find incredibly varied terrain in the south of France, with single track through limestone, wooded areas and steep mountainous terrain that will satisfy the most extreme riders.
Finally, there are many other incredible places to go by mountain bike in the south of France.
8. The Trail
The Trail is of course practicable in the south of France. For example, in the Hautes-Alpes, there is the Queyras Regional Park. Indeed, this park has 3 Trail courses to satisfy all the traileurs according to their levels of endurance.
The first one, the easiest, is a 3 km course and the third one is 9 km. In addition to the level of difficulty of these Trails, these routes offer you sublime landscapes of the Haute-Alpes.
Paragliding is a very popular sport in the south of France and for good reason. This is where the mountainous terrain meets the sea, creating world-class flying conditions and plenty of opportunities to soar year-round. The hot sun draws warm air up the south-facing slopes, creating thermal flares perfect for epic cross-country paragliding.
With the Maritime Alps stretching north from the Mediterranean, the coastal mountains of the Côte d'Azur hinterland, the spectacular turquoise lakes of the Verdon and the warm, dry mountainous terrain further west towards Aix-en-Provence, the south of France is one of the most spectacular flying regions in the world.
The region offers a wide variety of flying opportunities, from coastal free flight to thermal flight, including one of the first thermal sites in Europe, La Montagne du Chalvet in Saint-André-les-Alpes.
Experience the thrill of a tandem paragliding flight and see the French Riviera from above, or take a course and learn to fly your own wing. Paragliding schools offering tandem flights, discovery courses, pilot training and flight guides operate throughout the region.
10. Scuba diving
Finally, don't miss exploring the majestic seabed of the Côte Bleu with an introduction to diving or snorkeling. Discover the bay of Marseille, the Calanques National Park, and Port-Cros in a different way. Provence is full of unique and intense diving experiences.
The coast between Martigues and Marseille has very well preserved natural marine environments that lend themselves to incredible underwater excursions. About fifteen diving clubs affiliated to the French Federation of Underwater Studies and Sports (FFESSM) are located in Sausset-les-Pins, Carry-le-Rouet and Ensuès-la-Redonne.
They offer initiations, exploration dives, courses and training. In July and August, the Blue Coast Marine Park organizes free guided tours with snorkel in the marine reserve of Carry-le-Rouet.sports sports sports sports sports sports sports sports sports