When you think Paris and its surroundings, you don’t think climbing. But you’re wrong. The huge forest of Fontainebleau, 50km south of Paris, is very appreciated for climbing. At the end of 19th century it was even a training place for Alpine Climbers. It is why I came in camping la Belle Etoile the first time. It is considered as one of the best bouldering destination in the world (some even say the best one). Bouldering is a kind of low level rock climbong practice without ropes. In the woods, you’ll find thousands of sandstones boulders of different shape and size, with difficulties for all levels. The sandstone rocks are very good quality and the landings are generaly soft. You’ll also find rocky gorges that you don’t expect that close to Paris.
My favorite places for climbing in the Fontainebleau forest are the Rocher Canon, 5 km from the campsite la Belle Etoile, with a car park nearby. Or Gorges of Apremont or Gorges of Franchard. Two lovely gorges with very nature and surprising landscapes. But there are plenty of small sites to be discovered all around the Fontainebleau forest.
At reception of the campsite we have guide books with the most popular sites but also one called “Top Secret” that lists the less famous one.