The routes

Pedestrina / 5 steps / 60 km
From Morteau (F) to La Chaux-de-Fonds (CH), dive into the history of watchmaking and its smuggling past.
Pedestrian / 5 steps / 77 km
Circular walk on the French-Swiss border starting from Maîche
VTT / 7 steps / 252 km
Discover the job of the custom's officer
3 steps / 3h to 5h / 45 km
From Saint-Ursanne to Saint-Hippolyte step into the shoes of a smuggler

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Step into the shoes of a smuggler

Follow this route between the medieval towns of Saint-Ursanne (CH) and Saint-Hippolyte (FR). Tread the paths of the Doubs valley in the footsteps of the colporteurs and (re)discover the ultimate nomadic occupation.

Throughout this adventure you will follow the border between France and Switzerland, drinking in some stunning scenery.

3 days following in the footsteps of ideas smuggling

Step back in time and rediscover the importance of the pedlar for isolated populations in the mountains. Collect your goods in Saint-Ursanne, then set off for Saint-Hippolyte to sell them. As your journey progresses, you will learn that peddling is as much about ideas as about goods. Pedlars were known for spreading their subversive ideas (religious books, images, etc.). And on that note, don't forget to unearth the mysterious message hidden in the three letters you have been asked to take to Montécheroux.


Gares de Saignelégier
ou de Saint-Ursanne
• Chemins de fer du Jura

Saint-Ursanne :
+41 (0)32 461 36 63 / +41 (0)79 836 09 12
Saint-Hippolyte :
• Taxi service 0 800 800 245
• Allo taxi manu +33 (0)6 07 62 85 98

Bus (Suisse)
• Car postal
0848 40 20 40
• Chemins de fer du Jura


Balisage commun sur l’ensemble du sentier

En France
Régional GR® 5

En Suisse


Carte IGN
3623 OT
Gorges du Doubs

Carte Swiss Topo
222 Clos du Doubs


Highlights of the route

Saint-Ursanne medieval town, the Vallée d'Or and the small Franche-Comté town of Saint-Hippolyte.

Technical data file

The starting point for your three-day, 45km, walk is the picturesque medieval town of Saint-Ursanne, known as the "pearl of the Jura". After visiting the town, set off through the Vallée d'Or just like the white gold (salt) smugglers of the past.

Take a look at the restored customs officers' huts near Chamesol before finishing your journey with a visit to the little Franche-Comté town of Saint-Hippolyte, at the confluence of the Doubs and the Dessoubre.

Travel back from Saint-Hippolyte to Saint-Ursanne by taxi, or by public transport (bus from Goumois and then a train from Saignelégier) or on foot, on the GR5 following the "Au fil du Doubs" route (allow 3 extra days).






31lpi511ld44Le Colporteur - step 1
Pinpoint this step
Saint-Ursanne (Suisse)SS - Seleute (Suisse)SS
DISTANCE : 9.009Km   |   ASCENT : 486 m44   |   Walking time : 3h0033

Begin your walk by exploring Saint-Ursanne, the "pearl of the Jura". Enjoy the picturesque medieval architecture before heading through Boétchérie Wood to Seleute. Why not stop on La Croix pass (789m) or near Plainmont Chapel (850m) to take in the view?

To discover on the way

. Saint-Pierre gate known as the Delémont gate
. Plainmont Chapel
. Col de la Croix viewpoint

31lpi511ld44Le Colporteur - step 2
Pinpoint this step
Seleute (Suisse)SS - Réclère (Suisse)RR
DISTANCE : 17.701Km   |   ASCENT : 460 m44   |   Walking time : 5h3055

This second step takes you across the border and plunges you right into the history of smuggling.Cross the Vallée d'Or just like white gold (salt) smugglers did in days gone by. Discover the ruins of Roche d'Or castle. Don't miss the views from Faux d'Enson tower! Your walk finishes with a visit to Réclère caves and an opportunity to explore the Jurassic period at Préhisto-parc.

To discover on the way

. Réclère caves
. Boundary markers
. Faux d’Enson observation tower

31lpi511ld44Le Colporteur - step 3
Pinpoint this step
Réclère (Suisse)RR - Saint-Hippolyte (France) SS
DISTANCE : 18.301Km   |   ASCENT : 525m55   |   Walking time : 6h0066

Colporteurs, cross the border and shiver with the danger of the contraband you are carrying. Tremble as you pass the customs officer's hut near Chamesol and get to know the customs officers' ways. At Montécheroux, the museum of pliers is full of surprises. Lift the lid on the fascinating stories behind this everyday tool. Explore a real smuggler's hideaway, the Bisontin Cave, and finish your walk by exploring the small Franche-Comté town of Saint-Hippolyte.

To discover on the way

. The medieval town of Saint-Hippolyte
. Customs officer's hut
. Montjoie castle

Well for walking

Office de Tourisme de saint-ursanne - Jura tourisme 

 +41 (0)32 420 47 73 |
Place Roger Schaffter - 2882 SAINT-URSANNE - CH

Office de Tourisme du Pays Horloger

Bureau de Saint-Hippolyte +33 (0)8196 58 00 |
Place de l’Hôtel de Ville - 25190 SAINT-HIPPOLYTE - FR

. Weather
Before you leave , check the weather forecast 
Tél. : 08 92 68 02 21 -  refreshed 3 times per day
. Book your accommodation
Contact accommodation to pre book your nights 
. Take ID with you d’identité
Do not forget to take your ID as you cross the border and can be controlled. 
. Préparer sa randonnée
Obtain an adequate equipment and be sure to stay hydrated during your hike

plan : hiking shoes, backpack, rain gear , water bottle , sunscreen, hat, first aid kit, Swiss army knife , binoculars etc ...La time set for the steps is given for information only. This is an estimate based on an actual running time, which takes into account the length and height differences . Adjust your pace. Do not go too fast, take regular breaks and take time to marvel at the beauty of nature around you !

. Respect nature
You go hiking in a privileged environment. Help us preserve it, do not throw your garbage , do not fire and do not practice ceuillette on & rsquo; itinerary . & Nbsp; You grow in an environment of low mountain and pasture . Be sure to follow the herds and wildlife . Stay on marked trails , close the portals of the enclosure, and bypass the herds especially if young individuals composing them.

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