From many hundreds of years ago the Château de Rambouillet and
its estate played host to numerous hunting trips, but it did not become a royal residence
until Louis XVI acquired it in 1783. In fact King Francois I died in the tower
whilst on a hunting trip in 1547.
The town of Rambouillet has developed significantly over the years, especially since the
18th century, and this area with its beautiful forest, parklands and chic town has become
popular with hikers, cyclists, horse riders, nature lovers and is even the summer
residence of the French presidents and obviously hunting is no longer a main activity.
Although Rambouillet is technically outside the Haute Vallée de Chevreuse Regional Park
limits, they remain connected by cycle paths, hiking trails and pretty country roads lined
And there is probably nothing better than to take a stroll through the forest and explore
the countryside and wildlife around you, which is exactly what you can do in Espace
Rambouillet that is situated only a short distance from Paris
in the Ile de France region.
With its deer, stags wild boar and birds of prey, the Espace Rambouillet is a special
place where curiosity about wildlife and respect for animals come together for the
appreciation of its visitors. And yet the conservation of these animals, some of
which are becoming very rare, is at the top of the list of the nature reserve and the
National Forestry Office, so that we can still marvel at their grace and beauty and enjoy
them for years to come.
As well as taking a walk through the reserve, Rambouillet put in place a system of walks
that are high up in the trees called the Odyssey Green, which is a path suspended between
trees at almost 5 metres above the ground with 19 bridges and 18 platforms for walking
with your family in peace and tranquillity.
Each platform will give you a glimpse of what is around from a completely different
perspective, for example the life around the tree such as caterpillars etc, the tree
itself, the leaves, explaining about wood and how it can be sustainable, the fauna and
flora, how the birds and other animals use the trees, etc, etc, etc.
This makes for an exiting experience for all the family, but even more incredible for
most, is being able to see up close these rare beautiful birds of prey and the owls.
Espace Rambouillet also offers the visitor presentations of raptors in flight and there
are more than 20 different species, from the rare to the majestic. However, during
the period of November through to March, the Eagles take a well earned rest, but you can
still get to see them in their aviaries.
But it is thanks to the dedicated team of falconers that they train the eagles and provide
demonstrations, but they are also protecting them and helping them to breed, so that we
can all experience their wonder for year to come.
Ponies for Children
Because the site is so vast, with an area of approximately 180 hectares, to make the place
more accessible for your children and save their little legs, the Espace Rambouillet offer
a service that rents ponies to help you bring your young children with you on the trails.
The ponies are extremely docile and well prepared and you follow them at your discretion
on the trails and in the undergrowth, but it does depend upon the weather as when they are
available. Usually it is a Saturday from 2pm through to 6pm and on a Sunday from
11am through to 6pm.
The ponies are also available during the school holidays and on weekdays in July and
August from 1pm through to 6pm and the cost is 8 for the first half-hour and then
3.50 per hour after that.
There is also a fast food buffet style café on site which is open every day from May
through to August, but other times of the year this is limited to specific days, for
example it is always open on Sundays all year round.
There is also a shop and a children's play area plus you can also rent a pair of
binoculars, which are only 5 for the day.
The Espace Rambouillet Odyssey Green, which is the trail up in the trees, is only open
from 1st February through to 30th November. It is closed on a Monday and during the
low season, yet is open every day of the week in the summer months including on Mondays.
Just one other point, unfortunately your beloved pets are not allowed.
Address & Contact Details:
Route de Clairefontaine
Tel: 01 34 83 05 00
Fax: 01 34 83 67 34
Office National des Forêts
3 Rue de Groussay