The delicate natural space of Azé awaits you!

On July 5, André Accary, President of the Department of Saône-et-Loire, and Catherine Amiot, Vice President responsible for the environment, inaugurated the sixth sensitive natural space in Azé.

After the delicate natural area of ​​the Marais de Massilly, Pont du Roi de Saint-Émiland, the Marais de Montceaux-l’Étoile, the Étang de Pontoux and the Lande de Nancelle in Roche Vineuse, the ENS d’Azé is now open to the public.

Preserving and promoting a particularly sensitive heritage and allowing the public to discover and appreciate its riches are part of the missions of the Department of Saône-et-Loire. In this context, with the Departmental Plan for Sensitive Natural Areas revised in 2020, three ENS complete the show at Saône-et-Loire.

Among these, ENS d’Azé with a course entitled “On the Roof of Caves”, part of which is a “secret site” by the state. The Sensitive Natural Area (ENS) of the Azé Caves and its discovery path located in the heart of the Mâconnais Mountains, ENS d’Azé, including wooded hills in the north and the recently re-normalized Mouge River sector in the south-west is characterized by the presence of wild forest. Trees, fauna and flora typical of the dry environment, puzzles and natural treasures punctuate a landscaped and set trail of approximately 1.5 kilometres.

educational trip

10 educational stations explaining the fauna and flora of this prehistoric place in the Quaternary era, with one of the oldest human presences (about 300,000 years ago) and the presence of big cats, bears, and cave lions (about 200,000 years ago). This itinerary is complemented by the cutting-edge ‘Green Treasure Hunt’ brochure which is available on site (Town Hall, Reception Building) in hard copy and can be downloaded from the Saône-et-Loire administration website.

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The Cave Surface Discovery route initially focuses on wooded hills. This course is 1.5 km long, is completely physical, is based on the theme of exploration and discovery, and is complementary to caves. It will deal with various information related to forests and their ecosystem, flora, fauna, landscape evolution and the healthy environment of nature.

The investment value of the Saône-et-Loire department is more than 55,000 euros.

Corridor opening

On the advice of the ONF, establishing and securing the course is required to remove false acacia, a particularly invasive tree. This intervention was carried out by the Heritage Agency.

Belvedere Development: A 120-square-meter belvedere, installed ten years ago, did not meet public insurance standards or classified site orientations.

So Tim Boursier Mougenot, the parks commissioned by the management, recommended the lightest development possible, without distorting the site. Furniture and signage.

The furniture and signage were designed with the intention of being environmentally friendly so that they blend into the natural environment, in the spirit of the classified site.

Ten translation boards of different shapes and about ten signposts were installed.

This course has been designed entirely by the department of Saône-et-Loire, shaped and manufactured by PicBois.

Tours

As with ENS in other departments, several guided tours, accompanied by a nature guide from the department or the Bird Conservation Association (LPO), will be offered as part of their partnership with the department. These guided tours are organized free of charge, for the general public and school children, during the summer season and all year round for groups upon request. This year, two visits from the ENS (an animator of the province of Saône-et-Loire) are scheduled for July 28 and August 3.

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Information and registration: 03 85 39 55 00 – [email protected]

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