Gateway Pays des Ecrins, L'Argentière-la-Bessée is located 1000 meters above sea level. The confluence of the Gyronde, the torrent Fournel and the Durance, it allows access to neighboring valleys Freissinières, Vallouise which rises to 4102 meters at the Barre des Ecrins, and Fournel. L'Argentière-la-Bessée named after the silver mines that were exploited from the 10th century. Abandoned in the early 20th century, the site is the subject of archaeological excavations since 1990, updating many vestiges currently valued and to visit the underground galleries.
The mine site and the Castle of St. John (XVIII-XIX) allowing the mining museum, are both listed as historic monuments. They house a research center under the label of scientific, technical and industrial.
The religious heritage is composed of a multitude of buildings whose major component is the church of Saint-Apollinaire 15th century listed building, with its murals and its lock-headed chimera.
Old industrial city, L'Argentière-la-Bessée is the symbol of a successful conversion. In recent years it has set up a circuit of industrial heritage visited by many people witnessed a willingness to showcase its rich history by turning to tourism.
Taking advantage of its location, it is the world capital in January practitioners ice climbing. Once the snow melts, the city becomes a haven for outdoor sports (climbing, climbing, kayaking, canyoning, mountain biking, hiking), and water sports with its slalom on the Durance. In 2011, it hosted the world championships in kayaking.
In addition, in the valley has L'Argentière-la-Bessée Fournel of a single (subject to Deslioures and scope of blue thistles called queens of the Alps, the largest in Europe) of high biological diversity that can be discovered through the establishment of a preservation policy (Natura 2000) and animated in collaboration with the Ecrins National Park and National Forest Office.
With a municipal cultural department and a very active network of associations, the town also offers year-round quality animations like the Book Festival and Heritage in Dauphiné early August.