The Verdon Gorge is considered by many to be the most beautiful canyon in Europe. Formed by the Verdon River in the foothills of the Alps, the Verdon Gorge is lush with vegetation (hence its name), and is one of the most magnificent natural features in France. Although the area is developed with dams and bridges, these do little to detract from its beauty, or deter the hordes of visitors who holiday here every year.
Although the first known description of the Verdon Gorge only dates to the 18th century, it has probably been known since pre-Roman times thanks to its location close to one of Europe’s oldest centers of civilization. By the early 20th century, the gorge was well documented, and tourists descended on it from all over France and beyond.
The Verdon Gorge stretches for about fifteen miles, and at places is nearly a half a mile deep from rim to river. There are a number of dams along the gorge, which have formed a series of lake-reservoirs along its length. One of the most popular spots in the canyon is the Styx du Verdon, a narrow rocky rift where the Verdon River plunges underground.
The Verdon Gorge draws large numbers of nature enthusiasts, especially during the warm summer months. Hiking is very popular, and the steep slopes of the canyon walls are some of the most popular rock climbing sites in France. The gorge is spanned by the Pont de Chauliere, which also offers magnificent views. Web: www.lesgorgesduverdon.fr (official website).