Valley of the Páris Creek

Valley of the Páris Creek
Valley of the Páris Creek
Valley of the Páris Creek
Valley of the Páris Creek
Valley of the Páris Creek
Natural area of local importance.


Although the name of the protected gorge valley, which is popularly known as the “Palóc Grand Canyon”, is not geographically correct, it well reflects the specialty and uniqueness of the area. Approaching the site is possible from the direction of Ráróspuszta towards Nógrádszakál, turning from the country road to the left, passing through the railway track. Our orientation is aided by the information board recently placed by Ipoly Erdő Zrt. next to the road, which gives a detailed description of the protected area.

Geomorphological features

The Paris Valley is the left side-valley of the Ipoly, which flows north of Nógrádszakál, opposite to Rárósmulyad. The Paris stream, which by the way does not have a constant watercourse, has cut into several rocks in the gorge valley. In the dry, 15-20 meters deep, steep-walled valley, however, spectacular waterfalls are formed during rainy weather and snowmelt.

The area is an andesite-covered part of the former Ostrovsky Mountains, rising between Litke and Nógrádszakál. Presumably, the sediment layer into which the stream cuts the riverbed has accumulated at the estuarine delta of a river. In the gravelly, sandy sediments formed in large thickness, tuff marl or rhyolite tuff and tuffite layers settle in places. These layers preserved leaf imprints.

Sights to see

Recently, the first tree trunk caves in Hungary were discovered in the valley of the Paris stream, which are also rare. Plant parts and tree trunks were embedded in the volcanic sedimentary material (conglomerate) deposited after the volcanic eruptions ceased. Due to the volcanic sedimentary layer in the lake environment until then and the external forces, the tree trunks that had not been burned in the hot material started to rot, leaving cavities in place over time, which surfaced as the valley developed and deepened. The cavities are essentially imprints of tree trunks embedded in volcanic sedimentary rock, hence the name imprint cave.


The wet, deep gorge valley in the forest environment provides habitat for beggars and dragonflies. Of these, the protected species to be highlighted are the Common Club (Gomphus bidentatus), the Small Pincertail (Onychogomphus forcipatus) found only in the area affected by the Geopark, and the unprotected, but also rare, bottom-feeding bug (Aphelocheirus aestivalis).

Huge amounts of boulders and fallen trees that have accumulated in the gorge valley make hiking difficult. Be careful and cautious!
It can be visited in all seasons.