©Christel Gauthier
the spectacular red soil The Salagou lake

The Salagou lake

750 hectares of sapphire blue surrounded by ochre hills: this is the incredible setting of the Salagou lake, 50 km from Montpellier.

A surprising natural area

30 minutes from Montpellier and 40 km from the sea, Salagou is an artificial lake with an amazing colour. This reddish hue is caused by iron oxide contained in the sandstone rock.


Did you know?

The lake enables enthusiasts of the great outdoors to enjoy various activities — biking, horse riding, hiking, swimming, water sports.

This natural area is also ideal for peaceful strolls.

Beautiful walks await you in the Salagou valley amidst magnificent landscapes and surprising little hamlets.

A short trip to Lodève

Located around twenty kilometres from the Salagou Lake, Lodève is classified by Unesco as a “City of Art and History” at the gates of the Causses and the Cévennes.

What to see in Lodève :

– The Lodève Museum, housed in the Fleury family mansion, offers fine art, geology, paleontology, prehistory and archeology collections

– The sole provincial branch of the National Manufacturer of ‘Savonnerie‘ in Paris, which continues a rug weaving tradition dating back almost four centuries, is based in Lodeve.

– Just 7 km away is the Saint-Michel-de-Grandmont Priory, a listed historic building.

Organize My trip and hike

Tips For a good hike
  • Bring good shoes, sunglasses, cap and sun cream
  • If this is your first hike, be accompanied
  • Stay humble and select a route at your level
    • At the Baie des Vailhés: free parking open all year round, WC, water sports centre, first aid post & supervised swimming (summer), restaurant open all year round, camping, foodtruck (summer).
    • Shuttle buses are provided by Hérault transport in high season line 661 (see summer timetable): 5 departures per day from Lodève (6 returns) from Monday to Saturday and on Sundays 2 return slots. Fares: 1.60€ for one trip / 1€ for a book of 10 trips.