GR® 210 Hiking Trail - Follow in the footsteps of the Chasse-Marée, from Dieppe to Rouen
proposé par FFRandonnée - Comité départemental de Seine-Maritime
Walking along the GR® 210 hiking trail means following a path steeped in history! But it is also a wonderful way to explore the charms of Seine-Maritime in a different way… From Dieppe to Rouen, this 80-km long route will allow you to enjoy a breath of fresh air and walk through varied landscapes!
Sea, city, countryside, heritage sites, nature, history… All the ingredients are there for you to have an exceptional experience. Tempted by the adventure? Let's go!
Before putting on your walking shoes and hitting the road, let's have a look at the history of this route like no other!
The name of the GR® 210 is not due to chance, but to its history! From the Middle Ages until the 19th century, the word "Chasse-Marée" referred to a trade: the wholesale fishmongers who used to transport fish and seafood to inland markets. Boats in Brittany, "chasse-marées" were carts pulled by horses in Seine-Maritime. Nicknamed "sea drivers", they had to bring, in one night, fresh fish to Rouen and Paris from Dieppe, the closest fishing port to the capital! To succeed in this race against time, the carts, loaded on Quai Duquesne in Dieppe, left at sunset in order to deliver at dawn the Halles Market passing through the aptly-named Parisian street Faubourg-Poissonnière. Pulled by four Boulonnais horses, the carts were only allowed to stop to change horses in order to keep up their speed. In the 18th century, some 5,000 carts travelled every year carrying up to 200 pounds of fish every day. The development of the railway in 1848 linking Dieppe and Paris in four hours led to the decline of this "fish route".
Please note: the Way of St. James linking Dieppe to Chartres follows the GR® 210 between Dieppe and Rouen. You will thus see all along the way the shell waymarking the way in addition to the red and white waymarker of the GR®.
Nowadays, the GR® 210 route follows as closely as possible this former fish route.
The walk starts quite naturally from Quai Henri IV in Dieppe before crossing the renowned Puits salé Square in which the emblematic Café des Tribunaux has been located since the 18th century.
Nicknamed the "town with four ports", the maritime town of Dieppe is the oldest seaside resort in France and is still an important fishing port, the largest one in France for scallops. Make the most of your visit to the town to try one of its numerous restaurants, wander around the authentic Pollet neighbourhood, stroll on the seafront and live to the rhythm of its bustling port life!
Leaving Dieppe to go to Offranville, you will start walking up the green Scie Valley. You will pass the Vertus Cemetery where over 900 Allied soldiers who died in the area during World War II are buried. Most of these soldiers died during the raid of 19 August 1942 called "Operation Jubilee" that took place on 8 beaches of the Dieppe region. To learn more about this tragic historical event, go to the 19 August 1942 Dieppe Raid Memorial located in the former theatre of Dieppe.
In Offranville, you will be able to immerse yourself in culture as well as nature by visiting the William Farcy Floral Park (at the entrance, you can admire a Norman dovecote) or the Jacques-Émile Blanche Museum dedicated to the painter and writer who had lived in the town for many years. While you walk through the centre of the village, take time to stop and admire the church to look at its intriguing spire reaching 45 metres high, said to be "crooked”!
The route then takes you to the heart of Seine-Maritime's countryside, to the charming villages of Sauqueville, Ecorcheboeuf, Manéhouville, Anneville-sur-Scie (cider production) and Longueville-sur-Scie. Going out of the village of Longueville to go to Notre-Dame-du-Parc, you will cross the ruins of an 11th and 14th century medieval castle! An unusual and historical stroll in the heart of a majestic natural setting that will not leave you indifferent.
A few kilometres further away you will reach the town of Auffay with its significant architectural heritage. Take time to visit the renowned collegiate church and have a look at its "Jacquemarts" (bell strikers) that sets the rhythm of the town. Every fifteen minutes, these two automatons strike a bell while nodding their heads! The legend has it that Paquet Sivière and Houzou Bénard, a man from Dieppe and a man from Auffay were sentenced to pay for the clock of the collegiate church and strike the hours and church services for having outraged the Catholic faith. When they died, they would have been replaced by automatons. A must see curious feature that makes the inhabitants of the town and the surrounding area proud!
Your path takes you through several villages, along the Scie valley to Saint-Victor-l’Abbaye where the coastal river has its source.
You then leave the valley and continue towards Etaimpuis, Ormesnil before reaching Clères, a small typical village of Normandie with its 18th century covered market, its river and its small bridges. Make the most of your time in the village to visit the beautiful zoological and botanical park of Clères and admire its Renaissance chateau. Pink flamingos, ibises, wallabies, gibbons, cranes, red pandas, etc. There are 1,300 free-roaming species in all in the heart of these 13 hectares of green haven!
After going through Mont-Cauvaire, here you are in Montville, a welcoming town filled with flowers. There, you can stop for a break to visit the French Firefighters Museum! You will learn all about the fascinating story of firefighters thanks to a prestigious collection of vehicles, equipment, uniforms and documents. If you want to take a breath of fresh air, go to the town's leisure park "Espace Loisirs" and its 3-hectare lake! Leave the ground for few minutes and ride a pedal boat… Relaxation guaranteed!
A few kilometres further away, you reach the area of the Normandy Rouen Metropole. Before visiting its historic centre, the route takes you to explore the rich forests of the greater Rouen area: first you will go through the Forêt Verte (Green Forest), an exceptional natural area with splendid beech groves before entering the Bois de l’Archevêque in Mont-Saint-Aignan. On the way out of the woods, at the roundabout, you will enjoy a stunning view over the city of Rouen. Seen from above, the city's steeples and especially the spire of the majestic cathedral can be seen from an exceptional angle! A beautiful panoramic view of the city... Start walking down towards the centre of Rouen, to the Place du Vieux Marché (Old-Market Square), your destination and a landmark in the History of France, where Joan of Arc was burnt at stake in 1431.
In Rouen, stroll down the medieval streets of the historic centre or walk along the remodelled banks of the river Seine.
During your stroll, admire the beauty of numerous buildings and follow in the footsteps of Flaubert, Maupassant or Monet: the Cathedral (the highest spire in France), the Gros Horloge Astronomical Clock, the St Maclou ossuary and the Parliament of Normandy… There is a wide range of architectural and heritage gems! You will also appreciate the city's abundant cultural offer. The Museum of Fine-Arts, the Ceramics Museum or the Joan of Arc Historial, the latest museum in Rouen, are must-sees. Day or night, you will fall under its charm...
The GR® 210 can be completed in 3 or 4 days depending on the level of the walkers.
All along the way, you will be able stock up on food and water, rest, have lunch or dinner prepared with local products at the cafés, brasseries and other farm stops located along the route.
The GR® 210 is an original work of the Fédération Française de la Randonnée Pédestre (French Hiking Federation) (www.ffrandonnee.fr). Any unauthorised reproduction or use constitutes a violation of intellectual property rights and may result in prosecution.
GR® is a trademark registered by the FFRandonnée (French Hiking Federation), it refers to the routes identified as "GR®" waymarked with red and white. These routes are created by the French Hiking Federation. Unauthorized reproductions are liable to legal prosecutions.
Check all the GR® hiking trails at www.mongr.fr
For further information on the GR® 210 hiking trail, you can contact the French Hiking Federation of Seine-Maritime: +33 (0)9 53 82 34 96 or +33 (0)6 33 49 52 45 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Difficulty : Medium
Distance : 86 km
Waymark : GR
Leaves from : DIEPPE, Quai Henri IV
Arrives at : ROUEN, Place du Vieux-Marché
Waymarking : Red and white
Entretien : FFRANDONNÉE SEINE-MARITIME - 09 53 82 34 96 - email@example.com - https://www.mongr.fr
Tarred path : 50%