Lac de Charpal - Margeride en LozèreLac de Charpal - Margeride en Lozère
©Lac de Charpal - Margeride en Lozère|C. Nouet - OTI Mende
I tested it for you ...

The Charpal lake tour for families

Claire kindly told us about her family excursion around the lake of Charpal in Margeride.
A nice hike in a spectacular setting …

Lac Charpal ©claire (61)Lac Charpal ©claire (61)
©Lac Charpal ©claire (61)|C. Nouet - OTI Mende

We decided, during a weekend, to tour the Lake of Charpal with our family,
to stretch our legs and to see again this peaceful and wild site.

You can’ t see the lake from the road,
but a carriage road leads to it and makes you feel privileged
to have access to a private site.

After arriving, we start the tour on the right, on foot for the older children and by bike for the boys Nathan and Leo, who are 4 and 8 years old.

A little clarification, the walk is about 8 km long and the site is slightly hilly so it is more fun for the children to discover the lake this way.

There are not many people here today but that’s fine, at least we feel like Robinsons discovering a deserted island…

After following a wide sandy path, we take a narrower path on the left to follow the banks of the lake.
The lake is revealed from various and unexpected angles as we progress, and we can gradually make out its outline without ever really distinguishing it, and this is what makes it so charming.
The vegetation alternates between fir woods and wetland rushes.

Pontoons and footbridges have been built to cross the streams leading to the lake and the spongy banks bordering it. The children have fun crossing these wooden installations with the help of Mum or Dad, but don’t worry, there is nothing dangerous and no bike was mistreated during the course!

A few stops at the information panels on the local fauna and flora to recharge your batteries and off you go again.

The right-hand side of the lake offers the most open area and we still have a view of the water. After crossing another pontoon bridge, we start the return journey through a more wooded area. The birdsong accompanies us and makes this walk very bucolic. From time to time, peat bogs offer a clear and different view of the site. It is really very soothing but we soon have to face the facts, the end of the walk is approaching… We still have to cross the widest part of the lake, the dam. And here we are, we have arrived and the children have pedalled very well, and are relaxed too!

Claire view

Claire 01 2016 (1)Claire 01 2016 (1)
©Claire 01 2016 (1)

In addition to its landscaped aspect and the dam that makes this lake the main water reserve for the town of Mende, the Charpal site offers its visitors a calm and peaceful environment conducive to relaxation and revitalisation.

Claire: let's go my little troop!


0 €

per person

This experience includes :

  • Fresh air, exercise at your own pace
    In short, a lot of fun…

Good to know

  • The lake is located at a high altitude.
    Make sure you take a warm jacket depending on the season.
  • Swimming is forbidden!
    Swimming is forbidden, but experienced fishermen can make some nice catches of carnivorous fish such as pike, which are very common in the lake’s fishy waters.
    Charpal is the largest “No-kill” lake in France!
  • For the hikers who still want more, you can extend the hike and go up to the Truc de Fortunio, a viewpoint indicator and a superb view await you there.