Le Bilboquet rock in Fontainebleau forest © Atout France/Fabrice Milochau
Protected by France's Office National des Forêts, the forest of Fontainebleau encompasses the town and numerous nearby villages, and is recognised as a French national park. It is managed in order that its wild plants and trees, such as the rare Service Tree of Fontainebleau, and its populations of birds, mammals, and butterflies, can be conserved. It is a former royal hunting park often visited by walkers and horse riders. The forest is also well regarded for bouldering and is particularly popular among climbers, as the biggest developed area of that kind in the world.
The Royal Château de Fontainebleau is a large palace where the kings of France took their ease, and where the French royal court, from 1528 onwards, developed the concepts that became known as the Renaissance.
Artist in Fontainebleau forest. North-west of Fontainebleau
is Barbizon, a village famous for the many impressionist painters who spent
their lives there.
© Atout France/Fabrice Milochau