Grottes de St-Marcel d'Ardèche

Useful Information

multicoloured speleothems.
Location: Near St-Marcel d'Ardèche, 20km from Vallon. Ardèche valley, northern side.
Open: 15-MAR to JUN daily 10-18.
JUL to AUG daily 10-19.
SEP daily 10-18.
OCT to 15-NOV daily 10-17.
Last tour 1 hour before closing time. [2006]
Fee: Adults EUR 7.70, Children (6-14) EUR 4.50. Groups (20+): Adults EUR 5.50, Children (6-14) EUR 2.50. [2006]
Classification: SpeleologyKarst cave
Light: electric.
Dimension: L=50,331m, VR=233m, T=14°C.
Guided tours: D=60min, VR=80, St=416.
Address: Grotte de St Marcel D'Ardeche, Route touristique des Gorges de l'Ardéche, 07700 Saint-Marcel-d'Ardèche, Tel: +33-475-972610, Fax: +33-475-986712.
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


1838 discovered by a hunter from Aiguèze.
1988 tunnel built for easier access to cave.
1989 opened to the public.


The Speleothemrimstone pools illuminated by lamps inside the pool. This sight is even more phantastic in reallity.

The most spectacular feature of the Grottes de St-Marcel d'Ardèche are the beautiful Speleothemrimstone pools. The cave is entered through an 80m long adit, which brings the visitors right into the middle of the huge main passage. This passage winds downhill, and has an diameter of about 40m.

The first and most spectacular sight are the rimstone pools. Water running down the slope of the passage forms sinter, first with small gours, then continually growing. Today there are a hundred huge pools, with rims more than a metre high and less than 20cm thick.

Now the path follows the bend of the passage and down an iron stair into the last chamber, which is full of speleothems. The tour includes a sort of multimedia spectacle at this point. The speleothems are explained with classic music and light effects.

After this rest, we have to climb up the same way we came in. This is a bit strenuous, but the beautiful cave compensates for this hard work.

Grottes de St-Marcel d'Ardèche Gallery