Eco-Gites of Lenault Walks - La Pierre Druidique de Becquerel

This is walk number 6 in our series of walks you can take directly from the gite with the route taking you to the nearby ancient site known as Le Pierre Druidique, The Druid's Stone.  Be prepared for a scramble up a steep slope to visit the stone, although you can just as easily do the walk and view the stone from the bottom of the slope.



La Pierre Druidique de Becquerel, Perigny

Distance - 7.6 kms

This has to be one of my favourite walks in all seasons as there is something to enjoy in every month. But if I had to choose one time of year to walk it then it would have to be spring as the spring wild flowers along much of the route are simply stunning.

Perigny Church, Calvados, Normandy

SLope down to the Cresme Valley, Perigny, Calvados, Normandy

SIgn to the Druid's Stone

Druid's Stone, Perigny, Calvados, Normandy

Image credit - Roi.dagobert, CC BY-SA 3.0 <>, via Wikimedia Commons

Top of the Druid's Stone rsting in the Cresme Valley

Image credit - Roi.dagobert, CC BY-SA 3.0 <>, via Wikimedia Commons

Wild daffodils in the Cresme Valley, Calvados, Normandy

River Cresme, Calvados, Normandy

View across farmland to the village of Perigny, Calvados, Normandy

Le Bout de Là waymarker, Perigny, Calvados, Normandy

Primroses near Eco-Gites of Lenault, Calvados, Normandy

The Route

Walk out of the gite and head up the front drive.  At the road turn right.  Walk along the road looking out for the roadside cross on your right then turn left onto the path just the derelict buildings.  Walk along this path until you reach the road and turn right. Walk down the road towards the 15th century church at Perigny. 

Unlike most churches which are located in the centre of the village or town, in Perigny the church is outside of the village, apparently built on what is the highest point of the commune.  But I have no idea why this is the case.

Do not turn towards the village but continue along the road and when it takes a slight left bend approximately 50m after the church join the path in that goes straight on.  Walk down the hill, taking care as this path is quite a lot steeper than this photo above shows (2nd one down).  At the bottom of the slope look out for the small sign on your right, marked La Pierre Druidique. You'll see a small path through the undergrowth that winds very steeply up the the ancient stones known as The Druid's Stone. Do take a detour up this slope to visit the stones and be careful when descending as it is even steeper than the path you have just walked down!

The Druid's Stone stands in the middle of the woods on the crest of a rocky escarpment overlooking the valley of the Cresme. Huge rocks seem to have been cut at right angles and arranged together by some extraordinary force with some overhanging rocks seemingly defy balance. Two large blocks leave a passage between them and could have once served as supports for a large flat stone forming a dolmen.  It is believed that the top stone has, at some point rolled down into the valley where it now rests at the edge of the stream. 

At the foot of the Druid's Stone, two large yew trees stretch out their large dark branches and add a strange atmosphere to this mysterious place.  However, as dolmens were built in the early Neolithic Period (New Stone Age) around 4-5000 BCE and Druids only first appeared in the third century BCE, calling this structure a Druid's Stone is somewhat inaccurate.

After visiting the Druid's Stone continue along the path for a few meters and then take the path back along the valley. If you get to the road you've gone too far!

Follow this path that takes you down the valley of the River Cresme.  In spring the meadows and woodlands either side of this path are covered in wild flowers with the daffodils and bluebells being the most impressive.  As you walk along look out for the derelict buildings and stonework on your left which are the remains of ancient water mills with stone clad leets (water channels) used to draw the water up from the river to turn the water wheels. 

Part way along the valley, the river passes very close to the path making this a delightful place in summer to stop for a paddle and a picnic - you could even take a net and see if you could catch some tiddlers.

Continue along the valley path, up the hill and across open farmland. If you are lucky you'll be able to spot Perigny church way over on your right. Walk to the road and turn left, then turn right onto the first path.

The waymarker here (Le Bout de Là) has various routes on it including 2 dedicated horse riding paths: La Chevauchée de Guillame and La Rando des Haras.  If you fancy riding along part of these do contact the local riding stables, La Cour Antéol.  You could even bring your own horses which you can stable overnight at the riding stables whilst you stay at Eco-Gites of Lénault.

Carry on along the path, round the bend and drop back down into the next valley.  The lower part of this path is fed by a spring and becomes a stream in wet weather so waterproof footwear is advisable. 

At the road turn right up the hill. In spring the banks along the road become a riot of colour with wild flowers including cowslips, primroses and early purple orchids.

At the top of the hill turn left onto the path at the waymarker marked "Le Hamelet".  Continue along the path, round the sharp bend and come back into our back gate about 100m after the bend. 

Route of the walk "La Pierre Druidique", Normandy, France

You might also like:

Eco-Gites of Lenault Walks - Lenault

Normandy Churches

Archeology in Normandy


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Druid's Stone Walk, Perigny Normandie