Circuit des lacs de Prals

Circuit des lacs de Prals

Archeology and history
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This itinerary, where many marmots can be seen at the right season, will allow you to easily reach the five high-altitude lakes in the middle of the Alpine prairies.
Let yourself slide into a universe where glaciers, humans and time have shaped the landscape...

2 points of interest

  • Fauna

    Northern wheatear (Oenanthe oenanthe)

    Regularly seen in the Alpine pastures and recognisable when flying thanks to a white mark on its back, this migratory bird, only present in the Mercantour in summer, is slightly bigger than a sparrow. It builds its nest out of dry grass, moss and roots, often in the shelter of a rock or in cracks.

    In September, it flies to Africa for the winter months.
  • Fauna

    Marmots (marmotta marmotta)

    The main area where marmots spend their time is on the Alpine pastures but also on screes. They are often present on the Prals lakes itinerary! Keep your ears open as well: marmots make loud whistling noise. This is a way of warning its fellow marmots that danger is close.
    If you hear such a call, look up: it is possible that a golden eagle is flying over the area. Marmots can weigh up to 6kg before winter but they retain their natural agility.
    In spring, after at least 6 months of hibernation, they emerge looking thin. They then pick up their usual dietary and social habits, spending plenty of time in the sun.


Leaving from marker 360, go down the road until you reach marker 361. A gradual climb will lead you into the Prals Valley. Keep heading towards Lacs de Prals (markers 362 and 363).
Once you reach Plan de Prals (marker 364), leave the path which continues towards La baisse de Prals on your right and continue on the left until you reach the lakes.
When you reach the first lake, you can make a detour and explore the four others. 

Continue up a final short slope which allows you to reach La baisse des Cinq lacs at an altitude of 2335m (marker 366). The path heads into the Fenestre Valley. The downhill path, which is quite sharp, will lead you to the cow barns (marker 359).
If you wish to visit the sanctuary, you need to cross the bridge and follow the GR (red and white markers). You can then get back to the starting point via the same route.

  • Departure : Carpark at the cow barns in La Madone de Fenestre, Saint Martin de Vésubie
  • Arrival : Carpark at the cow barns in La Madone de Fenestre, Saint Martin de Vésubie
  • Towns crossed : Saint-Martin-Vésubie

Altimetric profile


Is in the midst of the park
The national park is an unrestricted natural area but subjected to regulations which must be known by all visitors.

Information desks

Office de Tourisme Métropolitain - Bureau d'information de Saint-Martin-Vésubie

Place du Général de Gaulle, 06450 Saint-Martin-Vésubie 93 03 21 28


Ouvert toute l'année
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Office de Tourisme Métropolitain - Bureau d'information de Valdeblore - La Colmiane

La Colmiane, 06420 Valdeblore 93 23 25 90


Toute l'année.
Fermetures exceptionnelles les 1er janvier, Lundi de Pâques, Jeudi de l'Ascension, Lundi de Pentecôte, 1er mai, 8 mai, 14 juillet, 15 août, 1er novembre, 11 novembre et 25 décembre.
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Access to La Madone de Fenestre: Randobus and shuttle bus.
Information available at Saint-Martin-Vésubie Tourism Office (00 33 (0)4 93 03 21 28).

Access and parking

At Saint-Martin-Vésubie, take the road towards La Madone de Fenestre for 11 km.

Parking :

Carpark at the cow barns in La Madone de Fenestre, Saint Martin de Vésubie

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