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Our walk to the Tour de la Massane


We are planning to offer a variety of walks, suitable for those with different levels of experience and/or capability, enabling you to discover well known locations and attractions with unique viewing points between the coast and the Albères hills. Discover this magnificent walk, organised and led by our own team who will take you to the Tower of the Massane (Tour de la Massane), high above Argelès.

The Tour de la Massane hike

The walk to the Tour de la Massane is suitable for those who are fit and experienced walkers

Leaving the charming hamlet of Lavall in the heart of the Albères, you will enjoy this beautiful walk, accompanied by Mika. En route, you climb through a shady forest to reach the unique viewing point at the Tour de la Massane. Even with your head in the clouds, you have the impression of being able to touch the sea.

Going across the stream at Lavall, then through the magnificent oak forest, this route allows you to enjoy the natural environment whilst participating in physical activity. The journey to the Massane forces you to appreciate its richness and diversity.

Following a steep climb, the path levels out before the final ascent. At the peak you have an unforgettable view of the Catalan coast. The tower itself, with its history and surrounding scenery, takes your breath away !

At the end of your ascent, you can « add your own stone to the structure ». To explain the term ‘cairn’, it’s a form of way marker, allowing walkers to know they are on the right path towards the summit. All walkers and ramblers have seen, at some time, a little pile of stones in the form of a pyramid pointing you in the right direction. This is a ‘cairn’ and as people pass, they add their own stone to the pyramid pile: from this, according to legend, comes the expression, « to add one’s stone to the structure ».

History of the Tour de la Massane

Perched high in the Albères hills, the Tour de la Massane, was built at the end of the 13th century by the order of Jacques II of Majorca. It is a strategically placed look out post of that era. Along with the Tour de la Madeloc and Quez Roig, this trio enabled communication between Cerdagne and the King’s summer residence at the Chateau of Collioure.

In use until the end of the French monarchy, it fell into ruin at the beginning of the 19th century. In 1981, an association along with technical teams from the council in Argelès, began a laborious renovation taking about 12 years to complete.

Known as Torre de Parabola (its Catalan name according to the 1923 archives), the name derives from « good stone ». Today its name makes reference to the River of the Massane which runs through Argelès sur Mer and whose source is found in the heart of the Albères hills.

Details for the walk

  • Price : on request
  • Walk in mostly shade
  • Difficulty : experienced, fit walkers
  • Duration :  3h30 to 4h00
  • Departure : from Lavall
  • Destination : Tour de la Massane
  • Height difference along route : 556 metres
  • Total distance : 10 km approx on paths which are listed, marked and secured
  • Minimum age : 14 years
  • Frequency : once a week

Essential equipment

  • Bottle of water
  • Cap or hat
  • Strong trainers of walking shoes : boots
  • Sun cream
  • Picnic
  • Snack bars or similar
  • Sun glasses