A sensitive natural space 

More than a walk, upper Cance and Ay valleys are an invitation to travel, to escape. Awakening of the senses and emotions of immersing yourself in a decor full of intimacy and delicacy. From the song of the water to that of the birds, from the abundant flora to the unique taste of a blueberry or a chanterelle offered randomly along the way, dive into the heart of the valleys!

Ay and Cance dug their beds between rocky reliefs and forests The classified valleys Sensitive Natural Area are full of paths, nooks wild, and viewpoints. So the nature is lush and full of promise. Characteristic Mediterranean rivers, they both flow down the Vivarais mountains, forcefully slashing the Rhone Piedmont. They dig among the most picturesque and wild gorges up to the confluence of the Rhône.

The Cancer

Haven of Peace and greenery, Cance meanders since Vernosc-les Annonay until Rhone. The D270 which runs along it is acclaimed by parking for cyclists. Neophytes can be reassured, the Lalouvesc Tourist Office with the Accueil Vélo label and our bike rental companies offer a electric bike offer with many course departures. 

After crossing the Annonay tannery district, go back in time in front of the monolithic rock and neolithic dolmen. They are a few steps north of the Roche Pereandre. Its 39 vertical meters surrounded by legends and mysteries invite to escape. A little further, the Moulin-sur-Cance suspension bridge class monument allows a new turn of the wheel in the past. Here it is the big industrial era of the valley.

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windmill bridge on canceLucile Ortega

waterfall river l'ay Lalouvesc Ardèche walks childrenSeverine Moulin


Ay, daughter of the two streams crossing Satillieu (the Nant and the Malpertuis) runs to the Rhône over 32 km of a narrow valley. It is protected by the sanctuary de Our Lady of Ay which dominates it from its rocky outcrop. The river is home to a fish biodiversity guarantee of the quality and purity of the water. THE qualified No-Kill courses (all fish caught must be returned to the water, alive) make it possible to keep, intact and balanced, the population of trout. The valley surprises with its geological and paleonthological wealth the finest example of which is the Chirat Blanc above Saint Symphorian of Mahun the Afars love to take refuge there. The secret atmosphere seduces hikers, the most intrepid of whom will dare to discover the Tourtel wood and the Gouaille valley

A parenthesis intimate and serene out of time. And out of the world! So that we necessarily have a good reason to treat ourselves to a walking tour. On horseback, by bike or in a sailing boat... No sorry, no boat with us: rather count on a view of the sky from the basket of a Ballooning. This adventure at the heart of a nature respected is possible thanks to local communities. They are engaged in the management of natural heritage enhancement and preservation. The Ay offers a shaded space beneficial in hot weather.

Guide to the Ay Valley

Lalouvesc Tourist Office
+04 75 67 84 20 XNUMX

The Sensitive Natural Area: Quésaco?

Sensitive Natural Area : High Valleys of Cance and Ay are protected. This departmental title is given to sites representative of the Ardèche nature. It must be said that there are people to protect! Butterflies galore, insects, reptiles, fish, birds, all come to take refuge in the tranquility of the place. In this way deer, foxes, weasels and wild boars also take advantage of the moors and wild wastelands. 

A landscape that provides a change of scenery. Some species are unique to rocky living conditions. For example Eurasian Eagle-Owl, Rock Swallows, Common Ravens and Black Redstarts. The same goes for the flora which is not to be outdone and the golden broom or the fushia carnation of the granites form a real painter's palette. Here is a green setting that will invite the traveler to daydream and wonder. 

Ardèche natural areaLucile Ortega

On the heights of the Ay

How about a two-day tour in the heart of the Ay valley? In the middle of the woods, crossing the pasture or along some remains of the ruins of La Barbe. Exactly 17 km of hiking takes you between Satillieu and Lalouvesc. The loop can be done on foot or by mountain bike. The bucolic paths roam the hillsides and rise offering the unforgettable spectacle of the panoramas over the valley. You will discover with wonder the hamlet of Veyrines and its XNUMXth century Romanesque church. A multi-faceted culture, adventure and nature trail.

Topo guide Ardèche Verte Walks and hikes

Val d'Ay booklet 4 euros
Lalouvesc Tourist Office
+04 75 67 84 20 XNUMX