The Pays Horloger (a group of villages in Franche-Comté) shares traditions, artisanal and culinary knowledge and natural riches that mankind has taken advantage of. This area has to be seen, listened to, tasted, smelled and touched. Hiking, cycle touring, dog sledding and cross-country skiing are some of the many ways to discover the treasures which this area has to offer.
The Musée de la Montre and the Musée de l’Horlogerie clock and watch museums demonstrate the patience and skill of those living in the Jura Mountains, who can design and make watch mechanisms that rival Swiss precision. Other must-sees are the farmhouses with “tuyé” chimneys! Inseparable from the Jura landscape, these large pyramid-shaped chimneys are used for smoking the famous Morteau sausage, adding all of its flavour. The bell foundry in Morteau continues to produce those noisy jewelry that adorns the necks of Montbéliarde cows. These cows provide the milk that makes the delicious Comté cheese. Another iconic breed you find in the Pays Horloger is the Comtois horse, which has a gentle temperament in spite of its physical strength.
On this mid-mountain plateau, the undeniable star is the Doubs River. A tumultuous river flowing through canyons in the Entre-Roches Gorge, the Doubs then flows languidly through the prairies in the Val de Morteau. Later, it really picks up speed again before its highlight at the Saut du Doubs waterfall, a spectacular 27-metre drop in Villiers-le-Lac. The natural border with neighbouring Switzerland, the Doubs has witnessed the epic adventures of smugglers in the mountains, out to evade customs officers using the Echelles de la Mort ropebridges since the 19th century. Also worth seeing is the Cirque de Consolation blind valley and the Dessoubre Valley. It is highly recommended that you go fishing and cool off during a heat wave!