Day 1 –Sommières and Surroundings

Our path takes us from our accommodation at the Mas de la Rivoire towards Sommières. After only a few meters, we spot some Himantoglossums Robertanium, a very impressive kind of orchid, which is in bloom at the moment and is typical for the region and especially for the garrigue.

Our hiking guide Harald explains to us how the different types of grapevines are cut and how they are tended, until a rustling sound draws our attention to a coypu in a nearby water ditch which is untroubled by our presence and continues to go about its business as if we weren’t there.

Wanderung Sommieres
A rustling sound from the water ditch

Once we have left the village of Villevieille behind us, we hike through the garrigue on sometimes eroded and rocky, but not steep, paths. I am particularly impressed by the terre blanche, the white earth, that has given the laurel woods a unique, fairytale-like look. When we get to Aujargues, we take a short break on the church square. There is not a soul to be seen. We pass the old train station, a few damp meadows with narcissi, and walk follow the bike path “Voie Verde” for a while until we get back to Villevieille and its château, which is still inhabited. From here we have a beautiful view towards the south and Sommières and its surroundings.

Wild narcissi in damp meadows

On the whole, today was a moderate but at the same time promising start to our hiking week. We round out the day with a Café double on the market place of Sommières and walk back to the Mas.

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