The Sentier des Sens (“Trail of the Senses”) is a charming walk of 2.7 km for nature-lovers of all ages, accessible also to pushchairs and wheelchairs. Developed in conjunction with a school for visually impaired children in Lausanne, the path invites visitors to explore nature with all their senses – and especially through touch, sound and smell.
Starting point is the Maison de la Forêt (“House of the Forest”): attractions include interactive exhibitions on local wildlife, observation towers on stilts, a botanical garden with medicinal plants, an adventure playground and café.
Here, visitors can pick up a copy of the “5 senses quiz” booklet, which features a series of puzzles and games at 5 stations around the Maison de la Forêt and a further 11 along the Sentier des Sens. The quiz is available in French, English and German; the panels along the way are also marked in braille.
Along the trail, visitors explore the sensations evoked by the flowers, trees and birdsong, the soil below their feet and the skies above. The route largely leads along a “bisse”, one of the irrigation channels characteristic of Valais, built by hand to carry precious alpine water to the fields and orchards. Created in in the 1850s, the Bisse de Saxon is the longest in Valais at 26 km, known as the “King of bisses”.
A picnic site at Le Marteau with tables and barbecue equipment is free for all to use.
NB The Maison de la Forêt is open from late May until the end of September, plus October weekends.
- Maison de la Forêt – fun interactive exhibitions, adventure playground and café
- 5 Senses Quiz – games and puzzles along the walk
- Flat, pushchair/wheelchair-accessible trail – mostly along the water
- Picnic site – complete with tables and barbecue equipment
Use of the trails and the information on this website is at hikers’ own risk. Local conditions may entail changes to routes. Valais/Wallis Promotion accepts no liability for the accuracy and completeness of information on this website.
For all hikes:
- Bring a map. Download full description of this route including large-scale map by clicking on “Print” icon, top right of this page.
- Use marked trails only, and observe all signposting – for your own safety, to safeguard grazing animals and to avoid disturbing wildlife.
- Close gates after passing through.
- Please be considerate to other trail users, and to the plants and animals.
- Do not leave any waste in nature.
For mountain hikes:
- Take extra care protecting yourself from the sun at altitude. UV radiation can be exceptionally strong, even in cloudy weather.
- Plan hike carefully: take into consideration fitness level of each participant, weather forecast and season.
- Weather conditions can change quickly in the mountains, without warning. Appropriate clothing is therefore essential, along with adequate supplies of food and water. In uncertain weather, turn back in good time.
For high-altitude hikes:
- Inform others of the route you plan to take. Whenever possible, avoid going alone.
- Do not venture onto glaciers without a mountain guide.
- Take note of the warning signs that point out the constant danger in river beds and along watercourses below dams and reservoirs: water levels may rise rapidly without warning.
Tips and hints
More information about the destination:
Getting thereA9 motorway, exit 24 (Riddes). Follow directions to La Tzoumaz.
ParkingParking in front of the Maison de la Forêt.
Book recommendation by the author
Author’s map recommendations
- good footwear
- clothing suitable for the weather: always carry a waterproof jacket
- hat or cap
- bottle for water
- binoculars (optional)
- hiking poles (optional)
- printout of this hike (click “Print” icon, to download)
For certain walks: