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Activities and interesting places to visit
  Activities and Discoveries  
Photo panoramique de la Loue

The Loue, one of the most beautiful rivers in France, supplies abundant crystal clear water and rapids all year around. This canoeing and fishing paradise is set in a beautiful scenery. Scenic points offer splendid views over the area.
The area picturesque villages attract nature and water lovers. There is something for everyone: hiking, mountain biking, canoeing, climbing and visiting the museums.

Waterfalls at Source
Waterfalls at Loue river source

Loue river at source
Loue river formation at source

Loue river at source
Headwaters of the Loue river at the Sarrazine cave

Loue River Source

A short distance away from village of Ouhans, it is the largest and probably the most beautiful spring in the Jura Mountains. After flowing through a long underground passage, the spring gushes forcefully out of a vast cave -60 m wide and 3 m- at the foot of a 106 m cliff.
A hiking trail starts at the spring, follows the steep gorges for 6 km, and reaches the village of Mouthier-Haute-Pierre.


Loue, a beautiful river in France
Loue river in the center of Ornans

Ornans town center
Town Center

Custave Courbet's native house
Gustave Courbet native house

La Loue Ornans
Loue river in Ornans


26 Km (16 miles) from Besancon, it is one of the most picturesque towns in Franche-Comte, with several places of interest.

The Loue Trail is a pedestrian itinerary through Ornans. The ten info centers along the trail are excellent sources to discover the natural and cultural heritage of the town.

The "Miroir de la Loue" - Loue Mirror is the pretty stretch of water where the church, town and cliffs are reflected on the water surface.

Courbet Museum - Painter Courbet's native house is now a museum dedicated to his life and works. Preserved in their original decor, the master's works and memorabilis (paintings, sculptures, drawings, photos) can be viewed and his restored workshop visited.

The National Water and Fishing House is located in a striking building along the Loue river. It is a fishing museum, training center, and water lab. It has a fascinating exhibition on the principal techniques, past and present, used in freshwater fishing.

A house along the Loue river at Ornans
A house along the river

Courbet Route

From the source of the Loue river to Cleron, the road runs along 30 km through seven locations where reproductions of Courbet's paintings are displayed at the very vista spots that inspired him.
Route Courbet
Courbet painting location
Peintoure de Courbet
Subject of Courbet painting
Peintoure de Courbet
Courbet painting location


Vine and Wine Museum in Lods. Located in a wine-grower's residence in the heart of the village, the museum displays collections of wine-making tools and objects.

Franche-Comte Costumes Museum in Montgesoye. The museum displays authentic regional costumes and an exquisite collection of old bonnets, lace and paintings by local artists, depicting country scenes.

Phisalix, Museum of Natural History in Mouthier-Haute-Pierre. Museum created in 1912, displays birds and reptiles of the Haute-Loue valley.

The Cooperative Kirsch de la Marsotte. A distillery in Mouthier-Haute-Pierre, it is famous for its kirsch made from the black "Marsotte" cherries.

Le Hameau du Fromage

Hameau du Fromage

Located in Cleron, it is a cultural site covering all Franche-Comte cheeses, beside the Edel de Cleron. A museum is dedicated to cheese making. Sale of regional products and restaurant facilities.




Loue river Fishing

The Loue is considered one of Europe's finest trout and grayling fishing rivers.


The canoe and the Loue river were made for each other. Rated "category 2", the river offers calm water for families and beginners, and white water for experts and thrill seekers.
The river stretch between Vuillafans and Cleron (10 km of rough water and 10 km of calmer water) is the most popular.

Loue river Canoeing and Kayaking

Rock Climbing

Rock climbing in Loue Valley

For beginners near Ornans, and for experts climbers high cliffs in Mouthier-Haute-Pierre.

Other Activities

  • Hiking: the valley provides a 110 km network of trails.
  • Mountain biking: a choice of itineraries on marked trails ranging from 15 to 45 km throughout the entire valley.
  • Jungle course or aerial trekking: climbing and traversing ropes courses in the forest.
  • Potholing (Speleology): several cavities such as the "Faux Monnayeurs" cave (Counterfeiters' Cave) in Mouthier offers a first-hand experience in exploring the underground world.

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