During this commented cruise on the Doubs aboard comfortable tour boats, discover the grand and impressive spectacle of nature. Gliding peacefully along the water, you will safely enjoy the exceptional beauty of the steep and wild high cliffs. Inaccessible by road, this setting will leave you with an unforgettable memory.
A stopover at the Saut du Doubs will give you access to the belvederes which overlook the impetuous fall of the Saut du Doubs. Our boats ensure from Villers-Le-Lac a very large number of departures with a large fleet specially equipped for walking or catering.
History of the Saut du Doubs Boat Tours
The term ´bateau-mouche´ (in the plural bateau-mouches) existed in the 19th century to designate boats that had only a utility purpose and were used only for the transport of goods and possibly passengers from one place to another on various rivers and canals. These boats had never been used for tourism.
Originally from Lyon, the “Bateaux-Mouches ®” were exported to Paris in 1867 during the Universal Exhibition. Built by the Lyons yards located in the “La Mouche” district of Gerland, these boats returned to the capital by sailing on the Saône and the inland canals. In France, the name “Bateaux Mouches” is a registered trademark. »(Source Wikipedia).
In the last century, the majestic site of the Saut du Doubs was already visited onboard large flatboats welcoming around forty passengers on two parallel benches. In 1880, the first paddle steamer was put into service by the Hôtel de France, its steam engine running on wood. This boat was called “Lac ou Villers”, from the old name of the village of Villers-le-Lac.
The Saut du Doubs and its Basins described by a famous Writer
Bernard Clavel, famous French writer (1923-2010), speaks of the Saut du Doubs: ´I firmly believe that the Vouivre, the real one, that of Marcel Aymé was born in the Saut du Doubs. So much wild beauty and mystery, so much poetry sleeping in the dark waters can only come from her. Beautiful as a goddess, she hides in the depths. During winter, ice prisoner, she is the one we hear howling with wolves´.
An usual Ice Skating Rink on the Challexon Lake
Each winter, the Doubs freezes and transforms Lake Chaillexon into a natural skating rink. The temperature sometimes approaches -30 ° C and the ice layer can reach in some places the 60 cm thickness.
It is not uncommon to see thousands of people strolling or skating on ice on certain days of winter, as well as refreshments and vendors of hot chestnuts.
The ice also allows the loggers to go by tractor to haul the surrounding woods, otherwise inaccessible.
The Saut du Doubs serving as a Border
With the Doubs acting as a natural border, all the ploys were good for crossing the border unnoticed at a time when Swiss products were very advantageous (tobacco, coffee, sugar, petroleum, oil).
During the last war, it was also an ideal crossing point for all those who wanted to reach Switzerland.
The top Place of high-flying Diving
As early as 1935, Froideveaux and Girard dived together from a height of 35 meters.
In 1936, Grirard broke here, the world record for high diving on diving board with a jump of 40 meters.
From the top of the rock at the table of Hercules in 1950, Father Simon dived 35 meters. Her dive lasted 3 seconds and her speed into the water was 98 km / h.
In 1987, aged 75, he dived again from a height of 15 meters.
In 1960 Froideveaux jumped from a 40-meter helicopter. He killed himself the following year in the port of Marseille while trying to renew his exploit.
Finally, in 1987, Olivier Favre broke the world record for high-flying diving by jumping from a height of 54 meters, and know that from this height, the speed of arrival in water is 117 km / h!