Panorama from the Observatory of Mont AigoualPanorama from the Observatory of Mont Aigoual
©Panorama from the Observatory of Mont Aigoual|Teddy Verneuil Lezbroz - Gard Tourisme

Mount Aigoual Observatory

The summit of the Gard culminates at 1567m of altitude

The observatory, the last active weather station in France, offers a panoramic view of the Cevennes and the Causses, and on a clear day, of the Alps, the Pyrenees and the Mediterranean. A panorama embracing the quarter of France where the sunrises and sunsets are sumptuous.

Mount Aigoual

A remarkable site

The site is located at 80% in the Cevennes National Park, an area listed as a Unesco World Heritage Site, and is among the highest points allowing for stargazing, at nightfall.

The second Cevennes summit after Mount Lozere, located on the town of Valleraugue, is an extraordinary site for the beauty of the landscapes it allows to embrace from the orientation table (no less than 13 departments), as well as its extreme climatic conditions (temperatures, gusts of wind, frost, snow, torrential rain, persistent fog).

  • The Météo France station

The observatory inaugurated in 1894, after 7 years of construction, houses the last active mountain weather station in France. It is occupied day and night by the staff of Météo-France.

  • The exhibition-museum Météosite

The observatory includes above all a museum of meteorology of the history of the Aigoual massif and its reforestation, accessible to all, with nearly 350 m2 of permanent and temporary exhibitions.
Visit the observatory with technicians from Météo France who present the science of meteorology through photos, videos, models, slideshows, instruments, games…

On site you have access to a parking lot for coaches and cars, a Snack-Bar and a gîte d’Etape de l’Aigoual.

Meteosite opening hours:

– From May to September, daily from 10am to 1pm and 2pm to 6pm
– From July 13 to August 25, daily from 10am to 7pm

Fauna and flora on the Aigoual

The Aigoual State Forest

Georges Fabre, a French forestry engineer, instituted a reforestation program on the Aigoual massif at the end of the 19th century, using mainly European species (spruce, pine, fir…) while experimenting with some exotic species in order to see how well they adapted to the Cevenol climate. The experimental plantations are now managed by the ONF.

This ambitious project has transformed a deserted mountain exposed to devastating floods into a forest space.

The Aigoual state forest is honored by the label Forêt d’Exception®.

La forêt domaniale de l'Aigoual, candidate au label Forêt d'Exception®
La forêt domaniale de l'Aigoual, candidate au label Forêt d'Exception®
La forêt domaniale de l'Aigoual, candidate au label Forêt d'Exception®

Pastoralism on the slopes of the Aigoual

The lands of the massif are inhabited, in the summer period, by transhumant flocks from the Cévennes plains. Each year, usually in June, the festival of transhumance resounds in l’Espérou where the ewes adorned with colorful pompons and singing necklaces come to parade through the hamlet and graze on the slopes of the Aigoual.

The valley is home to goat farms for milk and cheese (PDO pelardon).

The wildlife of the Aigoual

In the heart of the forest you can observe the Tengmalm’s owl and the black woodpecker, the emblematic inhabitants of the massif.

The Aigoual is also home to the mouflon, a species introduced in 1950. This wild cousin of the domestic sheep is easily observable from the Observatory of the mouflon located on the D986, between 6 and 9 pm an agent of the National Park will welcome you.

Go to discover this little-known animal with the interpretation trail “In the footsteps of the mouflon”.

Four Seasons Nature Pole

The Aigoual massif is famous for its hiking with more than 28 trails to suit everyone’s taste: on foot, on horseback, with a donkey, on a mountain bike, on a scooter, running or snowshoeing. A paradise for hikers. But above all, outdoor activities accessible to all: families, athletes… As well as thematic hikes such as the deer brace and animations organized by the Cevennes National Park.

Some ideas for outings:

In winter, the Ski resort of Prat Peyrot welcomes you with 14 alpine ski runs, 60 km of cross-country ski runs and a 5 km snowshoeing course.

On the south side of Mont-Aigoual, starting from Valleraugue, the 4000 steps climb offers you an 11km hike with a 1222-meter vertical drop and rocky steps from 20 to 70cm.

From the summit to Meyrueis, ride the iconic 20km mountain bike descent, with no particular difficulties, aside from managing speed.

On site