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5 must-do activities for autumn

Oh for the poetic charm of autumn, the season of shimmering colours that we so enjoy! To avoid those end-of-summer blues and temper your impatience for the winter season to come, we suggest a few activities that you absolutely must try during this very special season.

Aurélien BILLOIS / Bourgogne-Franche-Comté Tourisme
Vue depuis le belvédère des 4 Lacs

Hiking amid spectacular scenery 

Hiking in the Jura Mountains is all about taking the time to explore this generous wilderness. Be it by a lake, on top of a mountain or at a panoramic viewpoint, you won't be disappointed by nature's spectacle. Go to the 4 Lakes panoramic viewpoint for views over the lakes of Ilay, Narlay, Petit Maclu and Grand Maclu, and take one of the hiking trails to Eagle Peak (loop itineraries of 1 hour, 2 1/2 hours and 3 hours). The fiery colours of late autumn and the blue-green lakes lower down form a magnificent backdrop. You may also be tempted by a hike to the top of Crêt de la Neige (elevation 1,720m) in the High Jura mountain range, where you may be lucky enough to spot a chamois or a western capercaillie. Time permitting, during this hike you'll be able to enjoy 360° panoramic views of the Alps and Mont-Blanc!

4 Lakes panoramic viewpoint


Walking through the forest to gather mushrooms

Did you know that the name "Jura" comes from a Celtic word meaning "land of forest"? A land where spruce reigns. There's no doubt that you'll enjoy the tranquillity of a walk in the forest and the sound of freshly-fallen leaves crackling underfoot. If you keep your eyes wide open you're bound to find a few horn of plenty, ceps or girolle mushrooms to pick. But beware, if you're not entirely familiar with the fungi you come across, you should refrain from picking them as some varieties are very poisonous!

The Risoux Forest, for example, is the perfect place for an autumn walk. Grab your basket and head for the forests of the Jura Mountains to gather mushrooms to cook in one of the region's typical local dishes!

Risoux Forest


Castles & château for mystic discoveries

In the cool air of a misty morning, take a trip through time that plunges you into the history of the châteaux & castles of the Jura Mountains. The autumn colours give them a mystical feel. From its rocky spur, Joux Castle, an ancient gem that has played host to many a historic character, watches over La Cluse and the great roads of history. Cléron Castle stands amid the glistening landscape of the banks of the River Loue where its reflection creates a picture-postcard image. In the autumn, you'll love this trip through time discovering châteaux and castles.

Châteaux & Castles of the Jura Mountains

Alain DOIRE / Bourgogne-Franche-Comte Tourisme

Exploring the local gastronomy 

By car, by motorbike, by bicycle or on foot, you can explore the Jura vineyards and the absinthe trail. Head straight for the wine estates where you can delight in tastings of Jura wines or Bugey. The autumn colours work their magic here, as the vines offer their open-air spectacle of orange, yellow and ochre. While you're at it, why not also do the comté trail? These roads will take you to meet the people who put all their passion into this ancestral cheesemaking expertise that they will be delighted to share with you. The perfect "wine & food matching" itinerary.

The Comté Trail

M.COQUARD et E.DETREZ Bestjobers / Bourgogne-Franche-Comte Tourisme

Discovering unique craftsmanship 

Why not make the most of this season to discover the range of savoir-faire to be found in the Jura Mountains? Somestimes ancestral, the expertise that keeps the Mountains of Jura alive includes toy making and the reconstruction of a medieval village, not forgetting the multiple museums and activity workshops that should pique your curiosity. There are also a number of ancestral trades to discover, including the profession of cheese-ring maker!

So what exactly does a cheese-ring maker do?

This artisan uses the soft part of spruce bark, known as bast, to make ring moulds for the famous Mont d’Or cheese produced in our Mountains.

Discover this range of craftsmanship

En résumé