Forêt Domaniale de Compiègne - Boucle des Moines

Picardie  >  France

Large forest north-east of Paris. Great area to combine walking and birding. Rich in woodpeckers and other forest birds.

Added* by Thierry Martin
Most recent update 20 October 2022
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The Forest of Compiègne is - with an area of 14,357 hectares - one of the largest forests in France. It was one of the favourite hunting grounds of the kings of France. The forest consists mainly of beech and oak trees, but there are no less than 5,600 plant species recorded. Animals include a large population of deer, roe deer and wild boar. The forest is great for walking because it is crisscrossed by more than 1000 km of roads and paths. So there are endless trails to explore the different parts of the forest. Birds you can expect are forest birds like Great Spotted Woodpecker, Middle Spotted Woodpecker, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Black Woodpecker, Eurasian Green Woodpecker, Marsh Tit, Crested Tit, Coal Tit, Tree Pipit, Siskin, Bullfinch, Hawfinch, Common Redstart, Pied Flycatcher, Eurasian Nuthatch, Goldcrest, Firecrest, Blackcap, Garden Warbler and European Honey-buzzard.


Français: La forêt domaniale de Compiègne compose avec celles de Laigue et de Retz, un ensemble de 32 000 hectares. Cette hêtraie-chênaie est la 3e forêt domaniale française de par sa taille, 14 485 hectares, après Orléans et Fontainebleau. Elle est un des terrains de chasse favoris des rois de France des Mérovingiens au Second Empire. La forêt est essentiellement constituée de futaies de hêtres et de chênes. De manière plus générale, on compte pas moins de 5 600 espèces végétales. On dénombre dans la forêt 6 600 espèces animales, dont une importante population de cerfs, de chevreuils et de sangliers. Sillonnée par plus de 1000 km de routes et chemins, la forêt de Compiègne offre un large panel de promenades ou de randonnées.



The forest has 17 loops of walks and 11 routes of cycle paths and many places to park. The Boucle des Moines that is indicated on the map is a circular walk of 5,5 km long near the village of Vieux-Moulin. Click on the P in the map to get directions to the parking. Because the trail starts at two lakes you can also spot waterbirds like Mute Swan, Gadwall, Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, Eurasian Moorhen, Eurasian Coot, Great Cormorant and Grey Heron.


Français: La forêt compte 17 boucles de promenades à pied et 11 itinéraires de pistes cyclables. La Boucle des Moines qui est indiquée sur la carte est une promenade circulaire de 5,5 km de long à proximité du village de Vieux-Moulin. Cliquez sur le P sur la carte pour obtenir l'itinéraire vers le parking. Comme le sentier commence à deux lacs, vous pouvez également observer des oiseaux aquatiques comme Mute Swan, Gadwall, Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, Eurasian Moorhen, Eurasian Coot, Great Cormorant et Grey Heron.

Terrain and Habitat

Forest , Lake



Circular trail


Is a telescope useful?


Good birding season

All year round

Best time to visit



Wide path

Difficulty walking trail


Accessible by


Birdwatching hide / platform


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