Breakfast in the open airThe 22.07.2021. Breakfast at the Bol d'Air © Porte de DrômArdèche Tourisme Patrick Gardin
©Breakfast in the open air|Patrick Gardin

relaxation and discovery

around the Ideal Palace

Let’s go for a relaxing weekend in the land of the facteur Cheval around Hauterives. A territory 1 hour south of Lyon and Saint-Etienne that offers a green setting with a change of scenery but also cultural visits out of the ordinary. Visits, hikes, unusual accommodations.

The plus of this weekend: a reasoned and sober carbon balance! Simple visits, hikes and visits to local winemakers.

Séjour à réaliser en
2 days
1 nuit
From 210
min 2 pers.

you will like

  • the ideal palace of the letter carrier Cheval
  • the tomb of the letter carrier Cheval
  • the orchards of the Valloire
  • the tower of Arras/Rhône
  • the saint-joseph

Day 1

The morning

The morning is ideal for visiting the Palais idéal du facteur Cheval in Hauterives. The crowds are smaller, the sun’s rays delicately illuminate the eastern façade.
This must-see monument in France has an incredible history!

In April 1879, a letter carrier named Cheval made his rounds through the beautiful countryside of the Drôme. At that time, neither car nor electric bicycle, our valiant postal employee made his daily rounds on foot for about thirty kilometers. That day, he stumbled on a stone with a strange shape that awakened a dream in him: he saw himself building a majestic palace with his hands. The next day, he began to find the most beautiful stones during his rounds, came to look for them after his work day and began the construction of the monument of his dreams at nightfall. This little merry-go-round lasted for… 33 years!

In the afternoon

An idea for an easy and nice hike for the afternoon? We recommend the hike in Moras-en-Valloire “The mysterious staircase”. This 6.5km or 11km hike (easy level) allows you to cross the town and its medieval and Renaissance remains.
At the beginning of the route, admire the monumental baluster staircase below which nestles an ancient dungeon.
Then, head to the heights of the village in the direction of the church: from here, a panoramic view of the plain and its pear orchards.
Take a break: breathe in the fresh air of the Drôme countryside.
Continue the hike at your own pace… there’s no hurry, you’re on vacation!

Want to go on more hikes?

Many other hikes are possible in Porte de DrômArdèche. Muscular, family, curious and natural escapes.
To discover them, download our free app “Les échappées inspirées” on your store.

Day 2

The morning

After a good night’s sleep in an unusual accommodation like in one of the cabins at Home des Bois in Hauterives, it’s time to join a place inhabited by a magical legend: Les Roches-qui-dansent in Saint-Barthélémy-de-Vals.

A silent place, in the middle of an oak forest, where strange sandstone blocks stand. Several legends circulate about this sacred place. Some think that it would have been a place of druidic worship. Others say that the rocks would be protected by fairies and that they would start dancing at Christmas at the stroke of midnight. Finally, a last popular belief attributes their origin to Gargantua. While passing through the region, the giant would have emptied his shoe filled with pebbles at this precise spot.

The afternoon

After a nice restaurant at noon, we suggest you digest quietly by climbing the Arras/Rhône Tower to admire the view of the Rhône!
If you decide to go for a hike, choose “The Big 8”. It’s a big and beautiful circuit of 18 km, to do if you are sporty!

On your way out, don’t forget to stop by one (or both) of the village winemakers for a tasting of local St. Joseph! Cellar Jamet or Bécheras

The weekend is over… you’re relaxed, revitalized and out of it!

Practical information


From210 eurosper person

Minimum 2 people

Price includes
  • The visit to the Ideal Palace of the Postman Cheval
  • .

  • 2 lunches and 1 dinner at the restaurant
  • 1 night in unusual accommodation

This stay offer is valid on weekdays throughout the year subject to provider availability. Are you interested? Contact the tourist office now by phone (04 75 23 44 19) or email ( to let us know your request. Let us know your wishes and needs (the offer is entirely flexible and customizable). Enjoy the comfort : one reservation for the whole stay ! You don’t take care of anything, we take care of everything!