The Grands Causses highlands, land of caves and potholes
No river runs over the desert areas of the Grands Causses highlands because the permeable limestone soil lets rainwater seep. However, nature sometimes reserves spectacular surprises, and in the bowels of the earth water has secretly shaped extraordinary structures: this is the territory of caves and downpours. Some are designed to welcome the public: come and see Nature’s masterpieces such as the Aven Armand, the Dargilan Cave or Bramabiau’s Abyss!
Who was Edouard Alfred Martel?
Born in Pontoise in 1859, Martel had a taste for geography from a young age and curiously, for the underground world, at a time when cavities frightened rather than fascinated. He will begin a career as a lawyer, but that will not prevent him from exploring the world and bringing back from these trips many works which will make his reputation. His discovery of the Grands Causses highlands starts in 1833. He will fall in love with the place and will never stop exploring the bowels of the limestone plateaus, amazed by so many underground treasures concentrated in one place. In 10 years, he will explore more than 200. Altruistic, he wanted to share his discoveries with the greatest number, and thus worked for the construction of the first tourist facilities of the caves and potholes. To this great man, we owe the birth of speleology, as well as the discovery and exploration of many geological wonders, including the Aven Armand, Dargilan, and Bramabiau’s Abyss.
CAVES AND CAVERNS
Between Mont Aigoual, Gorges du Tarn and Millau Viaduct, discover the largest cave in the Causses and Cévennes: his unique drapery (2000m2), its very accentuated natural colors. On 1 km route in a magical world, the Dargilan cave, a *** classified site seduces by the diversity of its concretions and its natural colors (pink cave) and leaves an unforgettable memory. New dynamic LED lighting has made it possible, while protecting it even more, to reveal this cavity with a thousand colors, its hitherto unsuspected details and its grandiose volumes. "Go see Dargilan, even if you know the prettiest caves in Europe" wrote the founder of the French caving E.A.Martel. "The theater I dreamed of" Jean Cocteau
+33 4 66 45 60 20
CAVES AND CAVERNS
The Aven ARMAND chasm, discovered on the Causse Méjean in 1897 by Louis Armand and Edouard-Alfred Martel, is one of the most beautiful underground wonders. After descending by funicular, allowing the easiest access, let yourself be guided through the heart of a forest of more than 400 stalagmites, unique in the world, for an unforgettable journey to the center of the Earth. Passionate guides accompany you to the heart of this imaginary but very real world where jellyfish, turkey, vulture, palm tree, large organ, ... and the largest stalagmite known to date appear in a cavity built at the top of its 30m. Magic, Emotions, Dreams will be at the rendezvous for this 1 hour trip to the center of the Earth.
+33 4 66 45 61 31