This lesser known area of France boasts some of the world’s most breathtaking natural scenery, as well as an incredibly rich geological and archaeological history.
Dive into your water skills progression, explore new hiking terrain, and come face-to-face with the stories of the people who inhabited this ancient land, over 30,000 years ago. Your experience in the Ardèche will continue your leadership and team skills development through its generous serving of new challenges and problem-solving encounters.
This gentle 8km stretch is a good chance to get stuck into canoeing as you learn how to guide your boat through and across the rapids. There is a truly spectacular end to the day as you pass beneath the famous Pont d’Arc.
You’ll visit the same scenery from your day one canoeing trip, but this time on foot! Using a map and compass, you and your team mates will hike into the gorge to follow a two kilometre trail along the river. In addition to traditional map reading, you will also explore modern forms of navigation, including the use of GPS.
Grotte de Chauvet: In 1994, a trio of cave explorers made a discovery that changed our perception of prehistoric life forever. Buried deep, deep beneath the Ardeche gorge, the Chauvet cave contains the world’s best preserved examples of cave art. Understanding the need to share but also preserve such an important piece of history, the French have built a true-to-size replica of the original cave.
L'Aven d’Orgnac: 120-metres below ground lies the magnificent Aven d’Orgnac, a series of subterraneanchambers rich with gigantic crystal and limestone formations. It is a truly stunning geology lesson, the memory of which will stay with you for a long time to come.
It’s time to put the skills learnt on your first day on the river to the test as our river leaders lead you into the heart of the Ardeche gorge. You’ll have to think strategically as you face each turn of the river, using your paddling and communication skills to get you and your partner through choppy waters.
You’ll spend a little time outside of your boat too, swimming in the river, exploring caves and taking the plunge from the river’s famous rock jumps.
After docking your boats on a bank halfway down the gorge, you’ll carry your overnight supplies up the sandy bank and into the camp. The ATC team will whip up a barbecue to fill you up after a day’s hard work, before you turn in for a night under a blanket of shooting stars.
You’ll wake with the sun as it casts its warm glaze over the gorge walls. A hearty breakfast will set you up for your final day descending the Ardeche. Today you’ll paddle deep into the gorge, where you will encounter the river’s most remote and imposing scenery.
As you reach the end of the descent, the gorge walls will finally disappear back into the landscape and the sky will grow huge around you. A celebratory ice cream and soft drink await you at the finish line.
This thrilling day of zip lines and high rope challenges will see you soar through the trees, safe in the knowledge that you’re harnessed up and under the watchful eye of our instructors, who will always be on hand to guide you through any tricky areas and ensure that you stick to the strict safety requirements.