Simply saying the name Haut-Doubs paints a picture postcard image in one’s mind. Rolling hills populated by well-fed Montbéliarde cows, neat rows of fir trees, farmhouses clad in weather boards and crowned with pyramid chimneys called tuyés , villages nestled around strange bell towers with glazed tiles. You get the picture! It is even more charming in real life.
In practical terms, the Haut-Doubs refers to the area backing onto the Swiss border. In total, there are 79 villages and 52,000 inhabitants. On the reverse of our postcard is a genuine population and business centre, gathered around the urban hub of Pontarlier, famous for its absinthe. It is a lively, trading city that is a nice place to live and is in harmony with its environment. Landscapes, architectural heritage and agriculture- the Pays du Haut-Doubs reveals a consistent territory with a strong identity. Roads, monasteries and the border have ratified its birth and development since Roman times. Its rich history has left behind some remarkable traces such as, the Abbaye de Montbenoit and the Château de Joux.
Blue, White and Green
However, the Haut-Doubs is also identified by its natural beauty. The sources of the Doubs lie in Mouthe, the Loue in Ouhans, and the Source Bleue in Montperreux. More blue is found at the Lac Saint-Point in Malbuisson and in the Lac de Remoray nature reserve, continuing into the wilder Vallée du Drugeon and the peat bogs of Frasne. . Finally, there is the Levier forest (Europe’s biggest fir plantation) and the Mont-d’Or cliffs. You’ll want to put on your hiking boots or get on your mountain bike in this region. Come winter, you’ll explore the Haut-Doubs, which is as authentic, endearing and friendly as its inhabitants, on Nordic skis.