Randonnée itinérante le long du canal du Midi et du GR78

The banks of the Canal du Midi need no introduction, and walking is the easiest way to explore this unique waterway. A walk along the picture-perfect banks of the Canal du Midi is a bucolic and historic experience. Whether you have just a few hours or several days, this is an unmissable experience.

The Canal du Midi on foot: some fantastic walks

An unmissable experience along the water's edge

There are not many people who embark upon the 240 km walk from Toulouse to Thau lagoon in Marseillan. In actual fact, it may be a long journey but it is not a difficult one. 

You can expect a complete change of scenery as you cross three or even four French departments if you add on a steep section into the Montagne Noire to discover the water supply system for the Canal du Midi. You'll experience different climates, diverse scenery and varied architecture as you admire the bricks of Toulouse and then the cobbled streets of the medieval town of Carcassonne.

This is one adventure that is worth the effort!

The must-sees of the Canal du Midi

Did you know?

The banks of the Canal du Midi were initially towpaths. When the canal was built, the boats were tugged along by horses on these towpaths.

The ancient towpaths converted into a greenway route

Much to the delight of walkers and cyclists today, the towpaths were transformed into a greenway route. The majority of the route is now a cycle path!

It is a fairly flat route making it pleasant and accessible to all.

Randonnée écluse canal du Midi sur GR78, Ecluse du Pech-Laurier

Ecluse du Pech Laurier © JJ Gelbart, AFCC

Walks and hikes along the Canal du Midi: itineraries and durations

The Montagne Noire, Minervois and Santiago de Compostela are some of the most well-known routes here

There are a number of memorable hikes in the surrounding area of the Canal du Midi. From the highlands of the Montagne Noire to the Minervois vineyards or the Santiago de Compostela trails, here are some iconic hikes close to the banks of the Canal du Midi.

How long do we need for a hike along the Canal du Midi?

The walks along the Canal du Midi differ in type and duration. Depending on what you're looking for and your level of ability, take a look here at the various steps of the journey, and estimated durations for exploring the Canal du Midi on foot.

For information, if you walk at an average speed of 4.5 kilometres per hour, it will take you 54 hours to walk the 240 km of the Canal du Midi from Toulouse to Thau lagon. If you walk 5 hours per day, it will therefore take 11 days. You can adapt this to suit your needs, to allow time to explore the surrounding area, and depending on your ability.

Plan your hike

The 'Canal des Deux Mers by bike' greenway route

Some visitors prefer to explore the Canal du Midi by bike rather than on foot. The Canal des Deux Mers by bike greenway route is a 750 km long cycle route between the Atlantic and the Mediterranean Sea.

A unique experience in amongst iconic sites and spectacular scenery, whether you're alone or with your family.

The Canal des 2 Mers by bike: 750 km from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean