GR de Pays® meeting the terroirs

LOOP Tour in Saint-Chinian

We are talking here about the discovery of the central part (3), called the GR de Pays loop “Tour en Saint-Chinian”, in the heart of the Canal du Midi destination in Saint-Chinian!
Saint-Chinian is a destination recognized for its art of living, around the wine, these estates and castles. This loop will delight explorers, lovers of gastronomy, good wines and keen to discover a rich heritage bathed in a strong wine culture.

A complete tour of our destination!

Our community of communes, Sud Hérault, covers 17 villages from the Canal du Midi to Saint Chinian and a very large part of the territory. The “Tour en Saint-Chinian” loop of the GR tours en Pays Minervois, Saint-Chinian, Faugères crosses eight of our villages and will give you an incredible view of two others (a variant is possible to reach Capestang).

This is a hiking of 48 km as close as possible to the vineyard. Accessible, with a difficulty considered medium, the difference in height alternates between -45 m and +293 m with a positive slope over the last kilometers.


How to reach the start?


  • Departure car park:
    Avenue Charles Trenet

  • access:
    Departure car park: Saint-Chinian, 28 km north-west of Béziers by the D 612


Departure Saint-Chinian

48 km loop

Elevation +1000m / -1000m

Magnificent landscapes to see during this hike...

The interactive map of the GR de Pays

The main stages of the loop
Tour in Saint-Chinian

To guide you in your exploration, and enrich your experience, we suggest some essential steps during your hike.

The GR de Pays trails cross our villages and take you closer to our producers. Lovers of good wines and choice dishes, here you are in a land of tasting!

Among these steps are some tips so that lovers of taste can settle down and “taste great wines in the land”!


In Saint-Chinian, in the heart of the eponymous cru, a wine tasting is essential before starting the hike. You have the choice: Maison des Vins, Espace Vins or special estates. Need advice? Meet at the Tourist Office on the promenade, a typically Mediterranean square which hosts numerous festivals and events in season and a superb local market all year round on Thursday and Sunday mornings. Street art lover? Discover Art in the Cellar at the cooperative! Aurel, Kashink, Laura Chaplin, Miss Tic, Christian H, Jean Bastide, Eric Fleury have put art in cellars and bottles: find their works on the vats... Eyes and taste buds in Party, you are ready to walk towards the Abbey of Fontcaude, visiting the villages of Pierrerue and Cazedarnes along the way.

2. From Fontcaude Abbey to Puisserguier

Stop on the way to Santiago de Compostela, the old abbey is worth the detour, you can discover on the site an old bell foundry, the remains of the oil mill, ring the chimes and discover the choir of the church... a journey through time! An exceptional place, a vestige of the last Romanesque art in Languedoc! On the way to Puisserguier, passing near the domain of Milhau, you will discover a castle that belonged to Gustave Fayet, and a superb view of the cathedral of Béziers. Remember to make an appointment to stop at Domaine Milhau Lacugue for a colorful tasting!


3. From Puisserguier to Quarante

The imposing Cathar castle dominates the circular village of Puisserguier: Jacques, the president of the local heritage preservation association will be happy to share his passion with you during the visit. Don't miss a visit to the Ecomuseum of Life in the Past, located in the old village school: you will find a collection of objects from the past, and can take your school certificate or learn how to Sergeant Major pen writing in the reconstructed classroom! Before reaching Quarante, it is difficult to resist the temptation of a variant towards Capestang: the charm of the village and the river port on the Canal du Midi cannot leave anyone indifferent and its 43-metre high bell tower offers a panoramic view of the canal, the coast and the mountains... Our advice: at the exit of Puisserguier take the greenway to reach Capestang, then take the path towards Quarante following the markings for the GR®78 (the Pyrenean Piedmont Way to Compostela).

4. From Forty to Cruzy

The Quarante abbey church is a magnificent example of early Romanesque art in Languedoc. Remember to bring a 2€ coin for lighting and you will go from surprise to surprise: white marble altars, sarcophagus with flames... By appointment you can access the Treasure: a bust of Saint-Jean Baptiste, masterpiece of XNUMXth century Montpellier goldsmithing. The end of your hike is still far away, but you will reach the Terminus between Quarante and Cruzy: the old station has become a restaurant famous, the train terminus has become the terminus of the greenway which joins Capestang.

5. From Cruzy to Assignan

It is pleasant to stroll through the picturesque lanes of Cruzy. This formerly fortified village is full of historical curiosities. The massive appearance of the Sainte Eulalie church quickly attracts attention with its square tower, its crenellated watchtowers and its main gate decorated with battlements. The Cruzy Museum preserves discoveries made in the countryside surrounding the village. Indeed, excavations have revealed an important paleontological deposit (fossils of dinosaurs), as well as numerous archaeological remains (Gallo-Roman villas and necropolises). The museum also presents a collection of pottery, as well as evocations of the winemaker's revolt of 1907. From Cruzy you reach Villespassans and the plateau of Assignan by the parade of Sainte Foi and the parade of Marie Close, narrow and deep gorges. The place is called the end of the world….

6. Assignan

On the Assignan plateau, it is said that nothing runs except the wind! The landscape here is of sculptural beauty and in the village you will see life in pink! Pretty facades, a square, restaurants, shops, an art gallery, and a sprawling hotel! A dream come true… All you have to do is reach Saint-Chinian, taking in the views of the vineyards, the foothills and the Caroux massif along the way.

Discover in video

GR de Pays® meeting the terroirs

The GR de Pays® provide a hiking experience intended for lovers of long-distance trails. Perfect for explorers and nature lovers nature, alone or in a group, who wish to discover a large territory during their stay.

Easily accessible, the GR de Pays®
at the meeting of the terroirs are consisting of 5 loops of 2 to 3 days walk each. What to immerse yourself and enter into perfect harmony with the chosen destination.

GR® and GR® de Pays are trademarks registered by the FFRandonnée, they designate the routes identified under the name of "GR®", marked with white-red marks; and under the name of “GR® de Pays”, marked with yellow-red marks.

These routes are creations of the FFRandonnée. Their unauthorized reproduction, as well as the GR® and GR® de Pays trademarks constitute an infringement liable to prosecution.

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