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The Jean Racine path is a 5 km walk between the Château de la Madeleine and the Abbey of Port-Royal in the Regional Natural Park of the Haute Vallée de Chevreuse.
The Jean Racine path is a marked trail, it is not a loop, so you have to come back on your steps at the end of the path. The path winds between the forest, the houses and the valley. It is of a rather average interest but it makes it possible to discover two places charged with history: the castle of the Madeleine and the abbey of Port-Royal.
By entering the castle of the Madeleine you can have a magnificent view of the surrounding area. The visit takes a few minutes and is free.
The abbey of Port-Royal allows you to discover the history of Jansenism. To summarize, Jansenism is a branch of Catholicism. This doctrine advocates the return to religious austerity to get closer to God, it is quite close to the current created by Calvin.
This new school of thought displeased the king and then the pope who had the abbey destroyed. Today there are only ruins.
Nevertheless, the school inspired great men like Pascal and Racine.
Today the debate on the predestination of man seems a bit outdated but you can still visit the abbey and its museum to discover this school of thought.
The visit of the abbey and the museum is paying except the first Sunday in month. The museum being small, this option is to be considered. In any case the visit on the weekend is strongly advised.
You can easily park next to the castle in a car park surrounded by a low wall. The hike begins on the road to the left of the parking lot (opposite the castle).