The Land & Environment

The beauty and peace of Bonnevaux´s 65 hectares (160 acres) reflects the contemplative life lived here from its foundation as a Benedictine monastery in 1119 until the French Revolution. The land has over 20 different plant habitats, some of which are of heritage value. The community see themselves as stewards of this fertile place.


Bonnevaux (Bonne Vallée , or Good Valley) is set within a beautiful valley formed by the river Rhune (la Rhûne) which descends past the Chapel and the 12th-century Abbaye, emptying into the lake beyond. The valley comprises woods, meadows, grazing lands and fields. Much of the property is wooded and consists of many ancient oaks. The grounds are home to wild boar, small game, deer and a great diversity of bird life.

Permaculture Project

Although some fields were cultivated about twenty years ago, the land was converted to organic farming early on and it has not been treated with any phytosanitary products for more than fifty years. The community is continuing this policy as a living witness to the link between ecology and the human spirit. We are developing an integrated permaculture project to include vegetables, fruit and grapes.

Coming related events: