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Tourism, holidays & weekends guide in the Hautes-Alpes

L'Argentière-la-Bessée - Tourism, holidays & weekends guide in the Hautes-Alpes

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.

Geographical information

Tourism labels
Latitude44.7929240 (N 44° 47’ 35”)
Longitude6.5590930 (E 6° 33’ 33”)
AltitudeFrom 945m to 3243m
Surface area64.55 km²
Population2395 inhabitants
Density37 inhabitants/km²
PrefectureGap (71 km, 1h07)
Insee code05006
IntercommunalityCC du Pays des Ecrins
RegionProvence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur

Nearest cities & towns

Les Vigneaux5.1 km (7 min)
La Roche-de-Rame6.2 km (7 min)
Saint-Martin-de-Queyrières7.2 km (11 min)
Puy-Saint-Vincent8.7 km (12 min)
Vallouise9.8 km (14 min)
Champcella10.1 km (15 min)
Saint-Crépin11.6 km (12 min)
Freissinières11.7 km (16 min)
Pelvoux12.6 km (17 min)
Villar-Saint-Pancrace14.3 km (17 min)
Briançon16.1 km (18 min)
Eygliers16.8 km (18 min)
Mont-Dauphin17.7 km (18 min)
Puy-Saint-André19 km (22 min)

Things to see and do

Places of interest

Information points

Events and festivities


Hits from the silver mines
Hits from the silver mines
See photo
Industrial Heritage Tours
Industrial Heritage Tours
See photo
Chateau Saint Jean
Chateau Saint Jean
See photo
Mining Museum
Mining Museum
See photo
Church of Saint Apollinaire
Church of Saint Apollinaire
See photo
Visits Agricultural Heritage
Visits Agricultural Heritage
See photo


Friday 4 september
Min. 14°C - Max. 22°C
Saturday 5 september
Min. 3°C - Max. 19°C
Sunday 6 september
Min. 3°C - Max. 16°C

Visits, leisure and activities nearby

Leisure activities

Last nameActivity typeRateCity
Canoe-kayak on the rivers of Hautes-Alpes
Sports sensations32 € to 115 € Saint-Crépin (9.6 km)
Ski trekking in the Queyras valleys
Sports sensations65 € Arvieux (14.1 km)
Rafting - Inflatable canoe
Sports sensations34 € to 64 € Réotier (14.2 km)
Visit a sundial workshop
Arts and CraftsFreeMont-Dauphin (14.6 km)
Two-seat paraglider flight or course
Sports sensations75 € to 490 € Ceillac (22 km)


Last nameOuting typeDifficultyDurationDeparture municipality
Refuge du Promontoire
HikeAthletic5h40Saint-Christophe-en-Oisans (26 km)
Refuge Adèle Planchard
HikeAthletic6h45Villar-d'Arêne (29 km)
Hiking to the Pavé Lake
HikeAthletic4h25Villar-d'Arêne (31 km)
Via ferrata d'Arsine
HikeEasy45 minVillar-d'Arêne (31 km)
Descente du Col du Galibier (n°17 vtt)
Mountain bike itineraryEasy1h05Le Monêtier-les-Bains (32 km)


Bed & breakfasts

Vacation rentals