Loop around Gordes and its dry stone dwellings, through the valley of Sénancole and its unique Sénanque Abbey.
Calculated time is computed with the distance, the height difference, and an average speed of 2.2 mph. For an intermediate walker, this time includes small breaks.
Start at the large car park on the left, just before the intersection of D2 and D15, about 1 km from Gordes.
From the car park, head to the left by the road heading downhill, surrounded by dry stone walls (no markings).
At the first intersection, turn right towards "Village des Bories" then at the crossroads "The Grangiers" (1), head to the left, continuing towards Village des Bories (yellow markings).
At the sign for the "Village des Bories" at the car park entrance, the direction indicating "Sénancole" in been vandalised (as of March 2014) but continue uphill to the right of the car park, following the yellow line.
If you want to visit the “Village des Bories”, it will cost €6 (as of March 2014), but you can come back by car to the end of the walk.
At the entrance of the village (2) the path goes left through olive trees and oaks. It bypasses the village on the left, goes up above the Sénancole valley then back down into it.
Once down the valley, the trail goes right. Arrive at the “La Senancole" crossroads (3) and go straight straight ahead continuing to head uphill, the sign is also broken here. Continue up, sometimes heading right, sometimes left of the Sénancole (yellow markings). Once you are on the left part, slightly uphill, you will arrive at a crossroads (4) where the yellow markings tell you to go down to the right. Leave the yellow line, DO NOT GO DOWN but continue your climb to the left in the valley (blue markings). This trail will become wilder and more challenging at times with passages where you have to use your hands but without and great difficulty.
Arrive at the Sénanque Abbey (5), head around it on the right, and enjoy the view! Then arrive at a car park and find the sign for “Abbaye de Sénaque”. Go straight towards “La Pourraque" “Croix de Pouracon", on the paved road that goes uphill. 150 m further on you will find the GR route (Red and White markings) that plunges down to the left. Take this route, it will take you back to the D117 along which you will walk for a while and cross twice. The GR then takes you up in the pines along a path. In the uphill section ignore the first right turn and continue your ascent along the GR.
At a junction in a slightly uphill S-bend (6), leave the GR route to reach the unmarked path on the right. This brings you up into the Châteauneuf Valley, staying on the main trail tending towards the right (north-east) and ignore all the paths that lead off clearly to the right or left when you encounter crossroads. This trail will widen, leading to a forest track (yellow markings). Head down to the right to a car park at the crossing with the D117 to the sign for “Les Trois Trois Termes" (7).
Then take head in the direction of "Gordes" (yellow markings). This trail will take you back to Gordes town centre (ignore all the paths leading off and keep to the markings).
Go through the high Sénancole valley, an area remarkable for its beautiful micro-landscapes and the value of its natural heritage.
At the junction of La Gacholle (8) turn right on the road and follow it for 500 m and go left on the road.
Once arrived at the village square (9), take the time to enjoy the town then head in the direction of "Cavaillon", “Village des Bories". You will go down by road, but it has the best views of Gordes.
Once at the sign for "Bel Air" (10), continue on the road towards the "Col de Gordes", following the yellow markings leading to near the roundabout of the D2 and D15. Turn right to reach the car park.
D/A : km 0 - alt. 269m
1 : km 0.46 - alt. 268m - Les Grangiers
2 : km 1.68 - alt. 278m - Village des Bories
3 : km 3.01 - alt. 275m - The Sénancole
4 : km 3.75 - alt. 318m - Blue markings
5 : km 5.08 - alt. 381m - Abbaye Notre-Dame de Sénanque
6 : km 6.87 - alt. 507m - Leave the GR
7 : km 8.69 - alt. 575m - The Trois Termes
8 : km 12.25 - alt. 443m - La Gacholle
9 : km 13.97 - alt. 348m - Gordes
10 : km 15.16 - alt. 320m - Bel Air
D/A : km 16 - alt. 269m
Hikideas and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.
Visit the dry stone dwellings in the Village des Bories, after the walk, 2 minutes by car from the car park.
The GPS track and description are the property of the author.