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Ville de Saint-Martin-de-Crau

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"Une ville de Provence chaleureuse et accueillante"
"Une ville de Provence chaleureuse et accueillante"

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HomeTourisme Anglais > Visits and DiscoveriesDraille des Coussouls ("Trail of the Grassy Plains of Crau")


Draille des Coussouls ("Trail of the Grassy Plains of Crau")

Localisation :
In 2001, more than 7,400 hectares of the plains of La Crau (the "Coussouls") were declared a Nature Reserve. It is managed jointly by the Research Conservatory on Provence Ecosystems – Southern Alps (CEEP) and the Bouches-du-Rhône Chamber of Agriculture. Since May 2008, part of this Nature Reserve has become open to the public as part of the Draille des Coussouls nature discovery trail.
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The Nature Reserve of the Crau Coussouls is a powerful safeguard for preserving and keeping alive a heritage in which nature and sheep-breeding traditions are intertwined.
From the natural standpoint, the Nature Reserve shelters a unique and distinctive ecosystem, both with regard to fauna and flora. From the standpoint of sheep-breeding traditions, the infinite landscapes of the Crau plain have been crossed for thousands of years by shepherds and their flocks. Furthermore, the ancestral sheep-breeding activity has contributed greatly in maintaining the fragile balance between agriculture and the environment.

From this boundless space, only 147 hectares of the Peau de Meau Reserve are accessible to the public, after securing the required pass (€3) at the Ecomuseum of La Crau. Since May 2008, this pass allows visitors to use the Draille des Coussouls nature-discovery trail, on a 4.7 kilometre tour in a protected environment. Taking about two hours of walking, the trail offers to young and old alike the opportunity to discover little-known aspects of the "dry Crau". Fifteen signs are installed at the site to guide visitors. The signs describe the landscapes, the fauna and the flora, the profession of shepherd and flock management…

The Draille des Coussouls trail can be accessed after obtaining a pass from the Ecomuseum of La Crau.