Forests near RouenForests near Rouen
©Forests near Rouen

Forests of Exception

Wherever you are in Rouen, the forest is never far away. The capital of Normandy is the first urban area with a forest heart in France and three of its massifs hold the national label Forêt d’Exception. Run there and breathe deeply!

A rare label

On foot, on horseback or by bike, Rouen’s forests are a true natural heritage to explore.Walkers will find a source of escape, sportsmen a diversified playground and dreamers fabulous reasons for contemplation.

Three state forests in Rouen hold the national label Forêt d’Exception. A particularly selective label that recognizes the richness and enhancement of the massifs. The latter constitute real green lungs for the Norman capital since they cover 25,000 ha of greenery, i.e. a third of its territory!Rouen is thus the first agglomeration with a forest heart in France.Walk on its educational trails, discover its arboretum or its animal park. Experience the forest in sporting, contemplative and even artistic mode!

The wonders of the Roumare forest

It is a place much appreciated by the people of Rouen who come to walk there on Sundays. Domain of oak and beech, the forest of Roumare, west of Rouen, is crossed by many hiking trails, as well as hiking and mountain biking routes. 4,000 hectares of dream for athletes! In its center, a large animal park, with various observation points easy access for the public, allows you to discover hinds and wild boars in their natural element. A little further, an arboretum invites you to travel, to meet trees and plants from all over the world.

Artistic tour in the Green Forest

Exceptional walks also take us to forêt Verte, north of Rouen, where magnificent beech forests unfold. Patches of coniferous and deciduous trees grace the grounds, and cycling and horseback riding routes make it easy to wander around. This is where the land art event “La Forêt Monumentale” took place. A dozen works in XXL format punctuated a 4km route in the heart of the forest and combined art and nature with fun and intensity. For its first edition, the craze was very strong with 400,000 visitors.
The project will be renewed in 2024 in the forest of Roumare. Keep your eyes open!

Panorama of ElbeufPanorama of Elbeuf
©Panorama of Elbeuf
Remarkable trees and panoramas in the forest of La Londe-Rouvray

To the south, it is the forest of La Londe-Rouvray that stretches out, the largest massif in Normandy. Populated by oaks, beeches and Scots pines, it offers its cycling routes, a GR2 and various equestrian and pedestrian routes. It is home to remarkable trees such as the holey beech and the belly beech. In the early 19th century, Henri Gadeau de Kerville, a famous naturalist from Rouen, listed more than 113 exceptional trees in the Rouen forest massifs. There are still some beautiful specimens. It is an opportunity, too, to enjoy breathtaking panoramas such as that of Saint-Auct, on the edge of Elbeuf. Accessing it is deserved butthe view of the Seine Valley is sensational.

Green and sustainable tourism

The Forest Houses of the Rouen Metropolis animate and promote the richness of these natural spaces. And in an eco-citizen approach, they are also maintenance workcamps, clean-up operations or scientific counts that are regularly proposed. Like the High Environmental Quality construction of these houses with wood boilers and rainwater management. Their attractive curves and balanced insertion into the environment make them locations all the more appealing. So push open their doors!