Background information | Map of Nature Park


Avenois Regional Nature Park:
& Val Joly - outdoor leisure area

The biggest lake in northern France

Paths through the wooded hillsides round the lake make an ideal mountain-biking centre

Little Switzerland
You are sailing a small dinghy down the long lake, enjoying the beautiful scenery of the forested hills along its shores. The lake is a popular watersports centre with boats and equipment for hire: rowing- and sailing-boats, pedal-boats.

There are boat cruises around the lake and facilities for fishing.

Val Joly's Maison du Parc
At the lakeside Maison du Parc, there's a restaurant, bar and picnic area - also an open-air swimming pool, a playground, pony rides, and a place for archery. You can camp on a site by the lake, and there is new accommodation for school parties.

Explore the trails
Around the forests, signposted paths and trails help you explore on mountain-bikes, on horse-back, or by foot.
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Lac Joly: the dam holds back an artificial lake
1. Val Joly is an artificial lake created to supply water to the region's big cities.

The Park Centre in Maroilles: the old Abbey grange (grain store) and watermill, it was rescued from dereliction.
3. It is now a centre of information about the history and environment of the Park area.
4. School groups can learn about the environment from park wardens.

Local area map:

Click on places for more information

Avenois Nature Park
The lake area is just part of an extensive Nature Park protecting the rural hills and valleys that stretch from
Le Quesnoy and Fourmies to the Belgian border.

Explore the area's surprising history as a cradle of the industrial revolution by visiting the various sites of the Ecomusée in the Fourmies - Trélon area.


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Regional Nature Park

Maison du Parc, Grange Dimière,
4 cour de l'Abbaye BP3, 59550 MAROILLES
Information/ reservations:
Tel: 00 33 3 27 77 51 60 - Fax: 77 51 69

Val Joly Lake & Leisure Centre

Maison du Parc, Val Joly Departmental Parc,BP25 59740 LIESSIES
14km west of Avesnes
Information/ reservations:
Tel: 00 33 3 27 61 83 76
Fax: 00 33 3 27 61 83 09

Background information
Bike rides - leisure cycling: safe routes, off-road trails, signed circular routes on quiet roads, bikes on trains
Sports & outdoor leisure facilities
Horses & horse-riding

Other nature parks:
Adomarois - near Saint-Omer
Boulonnais - near Boulogne & 'Entre Deux Caps' area
Saint-Amand - Nature Park

Places to visit in the park:
Ecomusée - series of museums of old crafts, industries and social life




Ecomusée- museums of crafts © Copyright 1999-2007 Invicta Media. Last updated 8th August 2007