Walk to Freedom across the Pyrenees
France & Spain, Trek & Walk, 7 days - from £745 (land only) - from €930 (land only) - from $1,255 (land only)
Hiking through history
During WWII around 800 allied airmen and Jewish refugees took the `Walk to Freedom` from Nazi occupied Europe. Follow in their footsteps on this 4 day journey, from France to Spain, across the spectacular Pyrenees.
- Trek the Chemin de la Liberte the WWII escape route to Spain
- Hike from France to Spain on this historic trail
- A short and challenging 4 day trekking holiday in the Pyrenees
- Some of the best mountain views in the Pyrenees
- Free day in the French beautiful spa town of Luchon
The ‘Chemin de la Liberte' was the toughest of several escape routes across the Pyrenees during the Second World War; you can follow in the footsteps of history, from France to Spain, on this wonderful week long trekking holiday. Running from Saint-Girons in the Ariege district of France to near the village of Isil in Spain, the Chemin de la Liberte, or Walk to Freedom, has been an official way-marked walk since 1994 and can be completed as an excellent and challenging 4-day hike. After our first night in a comfortable chateau in Saint-Girons, once the German border forces HQ, our journey begins. Starting out the forested foothills of the Pyrenees we climb to cross the high mountains of the Ariege via the Refuge des Estagnous (2245m) and the Frontier Col (2522m). En route, we will pass safe houses and barns used as hiding places by the escapees and encounter rocky cirques, mountain lakes, boulder-fields and possibly snow-filled gullies, whilst marvelling at some of the finest mountain views in the Pyrenees. Our journey's end is at an excellent tapas bar in Val d'Aran, where we can celebrate the end of our 'walk to freedom'. Finally, we drive back across the border into France and end our adventure with a two night stay and a free day in the charming spa town of Luchon.
Is this holiday for you?
This trekking holiday is a traverse from France into Spain over the Pyrenees. We stay in a mix of chateau, rural gite, mountain refuge and we have one night either wild camping or in a basic shepherd's shelter or cabane. We will also have to carry all the belongings we need for 2.5days including a light sleeping bag, sleeping mat, a small stove, your own pack lunches and a share of 1 nights food provisions. The trek involves walking on a waymarked trail over variety of terrain including forest paths, Alpine meadows and over rocky passes. The trails used for the most part offer good underfoot conditions but there are several off piste sections where we will cross boulders and others where we may encounter patches of winter snow. A few places along the route involve some easy scrambling with some exposure. We average around 7 to 9 hours walking each day with typically approx 700 metres of ascent and / or descent on most days.