Lac des Escarcets, plaine des Maures

This lake in the Maures plain national nature reserve belongs to the coastal protection agency, the Conservatoire du Littoral. It is extraordinarily rich in fauna and flora.

The landscape of pink sandstone slabs studded with umbrella pines and cork oak is both striking and unique in France.

Access

Access is by the La Tire (Escarcets) track leading to the right off the D558 towards La Garde-Freinet, 6km from the Cannet des Maures roundabout at the junction of the A8 and A57 motorways.

Hiking around the Escarcets lake

Unravelling the mystery of the little-known places belonging to the Conservatoire du Littoral is always a delight, from Ginestrier to la Grande Pinède, Val Rouvier and Ciffert.
The reedbeds of the Escarcets and Aurèdes lakes are nesting sites for birds, while the heather of the maquis scrub, interspersed with fields of vines, provides the ideal habitat for the Hermann’s tortoise.  The orchids, ferns, dry grassland, alder and poplar trees form a mosaic of spectacular environments. And as the sun sets, the pink sandstone slabs studded with umbrella pines and cork oak, are reminiscent of an African savannah landscape, unique in France.

This whole area has seen little development, therefore some paths, although relatively flat, can be hazardous. Caution is advised on the various fords, rock slabs, wetlands, small rocky steps, gullies, and sandy, stony and muddy areas, where the degree of hazard varies with the seasons.

The routes can be explored on foot, by mountain bike or on horseback (unharnessed), with specific paths designated for these activities.
Numbered direction posts have been placed at the main junctions.

Please remember that you are in a nature reserve: Look but don't touch. Don't pick or remove any plants, and be careful not to disturb wildlife. Whether on foot, horseback or cycle, pay attention to the signage relevant to you, and stay on the marked paths. Do not light fires or discard cigarette butts, even if extinguished. Take all rubbish home with you. Close all gates behind you. Keep dogs on a lead.

Enjoy your walk or ride!

Les vallons des Escarcets : ramble 6,2 km.

La dernière plaine sauvage : ramble 13,1 km.

Les drailles des Escarcets : mountain bike ride 14,2 km.

La ronde des Escarcets : horse ride 17,8 km.