Pyrenees : Trekking and backpacking along Pyrenean long distance footpaths and trails                  Pyrénées (F)       Pyrenäen (D)     Pyreneeën (NL)

Below all information you need to organize your own trekking, hiking or backpacking tour through the Pyrenees, western Europe's last wilderness : books, maps, a checklist and valuable insider information on parks, highest peaks, on the areas of outstanding natural beauty you should have seen, on the  GR 10 and GR 11  (long distance footpaths) and the high level route HRP that cross our Pyrenees from East to West and suggestions on how to combine them to an own original trail and an exciting holiday. Get a complete 14-days original unpublished trail description in French here. or a 1 week in English here

If you need further help  contact Richard our mountain leader, He also offers made to measure guided hikes for you, your couple, family or group.

How to get in Miglos? click here

1. Preparing your trekking / backpacking through the Pyrenees

Most important: stay dry and warm and don't carry unnecessary weight. Your rucksack should not weigh more than 17 kg at the start of a 14 day hike, food included. This checklist and some books (see below) can  help you. 15 Kg is better and possible (depends only on the weight of your rucksack and tent)

1.1. Guide books on trekking / hiking in the Pyrenees

 You do not really need a book as you can find most of the  necessary information on maps of the region.  However, there are 3 useful guide books.  Don't take the books with you, it's unnecessary weight, just note the information relevant  to your hike on the back of your map.

The better maps are those of the Catalan cartographic Institute


self catering guesthouse for hikers, families & groups in the Ariege Pyrenees

1.1.1. PYRENEES: HIGH  LEVEL ROUTE, by Georges Veron, West Col Publications (ISBN: 0906227488). 

A description of a backpacking route crossing the Pyrenees from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean in 45 days. In practice there this is not really possible: you would have to add at least one day a week for resting and a further day to go down to buy food (replenishing supplies would take at least 2 days every fortnight for a single descent-ascent, as shops are generally now only in the small towns). This route is the one that likes the highest and most important peaks of the Pyrenees (Aneto, Mont Valier, Estats, Carlit and Canigou peaks)



1.1.2 LA SENDA: Grande traversée des Pyrénées espagnoles par le GR11, by Jean-François Rodriguez. (ISBN:2.905521.43.0 - in French, Spanish or Catalan; the English edition should be out soon).
This guide describes a route, a marked trail, following the Spanish side of the cordillera de los Pireneos.  Even in a non-English version, you can use the tables which indicate where you can get food.  This trail  (with exception for the 13 first and the 8 last days) is probably the most beautiful of the three, although less difficult than the high level route and you will only now the Spanish side of the mountains.  The combination of high and middle altitude footpaths makes getting supplies easier and it is less demanding than the french marked long distance footpath "GR10".  

1.1.3. THE PYRENEAN TRAIL: GR10, by Alan Castle, Cicerone Press (ISBN: 1852842458). 
Like the High level route, French long distance footpath no. 10 ("GR10") runs from the Atlantic to the mediteranean northern (French) side of the Pyrenees.  Except for the eastern end Ariege and Pyrenees Orientales), the French side of the Pyrenees gets much more rain than the Spanish and this route although a marked trail is much more demanding than the 2 others because of the descents into the many steep north-south running valleys on the French side. 

GR routes are indicated throughout  with these markings  marked long distance trails through the Pyrenees for seniors in Dutch. High Level Routes are not indicated, they need very good map reading and orienteering abilities since footpaths that still existed some years ago may have disappeared with the decline of shepherding. 

The more beautiful, higher and wilder parts of the Pyrenees are (from west to east) the Northern parts of the Spanish counties of Huesca, Val d'Aran and Lleida, the French county of Ariège and Andorra.  There is also the western half of the French county of Pyrenees Orientales. This means  the Pyrenees between the N134 (France)/ N330 (Spain) relying Pau in France across the Somport pass to  Jaca and Huesca in Spain to the West and the N116 road in France to the East.  These areas include the parks of Monte Perdido, Maladeta and Aigues Tortes and the beautiful wild Ventelao massifs in Spain, the Pica (= peak in Catalan) d'Estats massif on both sides of the border, the Pic des Trois Seigneurs (Ariège)  and the parks around the Carlit peak (Ariège/Pyrenées Orientales) massifs in France and the Grau Roig massif in Andorra. 

Made to measure hiking for seniors in France,Andorra and Spain Pyrenees mountains

If you want to make a rapid crossing of the most beautiful part the Pyrenees one possibility is to start at Somport  in Spain and pass by the Parque ( = park in Catalan) Nacional de Ordessa, Monte Perdido, the Maladeta massif and the Parque Nacional d'Aigues Tortes.  Cross the border near the d'Estats peak and pass from lake to lake in the south of the French county of Ariège, then over the  Carlit Massif and Camporells to Mont Louis in the French county of Pyrenées Orientales.  This trail does not include the very beautiful Grau Roig in Andorra.  For many of the environmentally conscious the small country of Andorra is an ecological catastrophe where urbanization and uncontrolled commercial interests have been more important than the preservation of what only 3 decades years ago was a country of outstanding natural beauty.

 Consider becoming a member for one year only. It offers you good value low costs programmed trekking as wel as made to measure discovery of the Pyrenees mountains.

owever, if you really want to get to know the Pyrenees and the people who live here, our suggestion would be to explore these regions over a period of years from two "base camps", one somewhere north of Lleida (e.g. the campsite at Ixeia, cfr day 20 of the Senda route), the other being the house of "Friends of the Pyrenees" at Miglos (tel +32.60.456.497)

Cheap family holidays self catering accommodation in France Midi Pyrenees Ariege cheap group accommodation in France.

cheap family holidays and self catering group accommodation Ariege Pyrenees: house of Friends of the Pyrenees Mountains

walking, hiking and trekking in the spanish pyrenees, french pyrenees and Andorra

hiking mountain retreat: meditation retreats and spirituality 2 weeks in the Pyrenees mountains

guide service for the french and spanish p^yrenees and Andorra : made to measure hikes and treks

friends of the Pyrenees a members run small is beautiful group of mountain lovers offer self catering and hiking in the Pyrenees

Learn Dutch courses according to Wall street journal this is the best method Hiking and trekking links to the Pyrenees mountains and other mountain regions
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Impressum / legal info / copyright

This website is the international Pyrenees mountains information website of Vriendenkring Amitié Européenne asbl a Belgian small is beatifull non profit association.

Our other websites are: for more information in French. This website also contains a 2 weeks trail description, an alternative high route through the French and Andorran Pyrenees.

Similar information in Dutch about our Pyrenees house, family holidays, guided treks and extended information on our mountain retreat is on

As you may guess we cannot earn the necessary money to run our organization, the house, our trekkings and hikes only through membership fees.

That's why since 2003 we joined in DialoguE, according to The Wall Street Journal one of the best European language schools, to provide high level crash courses Dutch for executive managers and the higher educated.

Richard our former senior benevolent is working full time as our employee now.

Richard has a background in Organizational Development, expertise in learning and personal development strategies (he teaches that topic at Continuing Studies of Lille II University).

He's fluent in English, German and French.

Richard loves teaching his mother tongue in an efficient one to one setting and is a real expert in client- and dialogue centered learning.

Richard commits himself fully  you learn Dutch in 1 single week even starting from scratch more levels up in an amazing minimum time.

A special website in German dedicated to this Dutch courses for the higher educated is

Same information to our French full immersion private Dutch courses can be found on

responsible editor :

Richard van Egdom                                  

office & contact : Lutiau 53, B-6500 Beaumont

Friends of the Pyrenees House : Le Castel, F-09400 Miglos

phone +32 60 456 497