Pioch Farrus Mine

Les mines de Pioch Farrus

Useful Information

Location: Near Cabrières. At the first houses from Villeneuvette turn left, across the bridge. After 500 m turn left again. Signposted.
Open: APR to 01-NOV Mon-Thu, Sun 14-19.
Tours start ofn the full hour.
Fee: Adults EUR 8, Children (6-16) EUR 4, Children (0-5) free.
Groups : Adults EUR 6, Children (6-16) EUR 3.50.
Groups : Adults EUR 5, Children (6-16) EUR 3.50.
Classification: MineCopper Mine
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Dimension: T=15 °C.
Guided tours: L=185 m, D=45 min.
Bibliography: P. Ambert, H. Barge, C. Landes (1985): Les mines de cuivre de Pioch Farrus (Cabrières, Hérault), Préhistoire et Antiquité in Etudes languedociennes, Congrès Actes du 110 Congrès National des Sociétés Savantes
Jean Luc Esperou, Pierre Roques (2008): Les Mines De Cabrieres, L'exploitation des cuivres argentifères depuis la fin du IIIe millénaire avant notre ère. A4, 180pp.
Address: Pioch Farrus Mine, 34800 Cabrieres, Herault-Languedoc, Tel: +33-467-390318, Cell: +33-614-914602, Fax: +33-467-962638. E-mail: contact
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.



The mining followed a cleft which was filled with a quartz vein containing copper bearing minerals like azurite and malachite. Less common are the ores tetrahedrite and chalcopyrite.


Pioch Farrus Mine is an ancient copper mine, which was mined 5,000 years ago. It is the oldest underground mine of France. The underground tour shows a 200 m long tunnel, where copper for axes, awls, pearls, and daggers was mined. It shows remains of three periods of mining: prehistoric, Roman and 19th century.

The whole area is rich in prehistoric mining remains. There are several deposits of copper minerals in the area, which were mined at eight locations: Font de Nuque, Vallarade, Pioch Farrus, La Roussignole, Mougno, Combemalle, Autimergues, and Mas Rouch. The ore was processed and the smelted on seven locations: Roque Fenestre, Valat Grand, Capitelle du Broum, Pioch Farrus, Pioch de Jaffet, Pitrous, and Mougno. At the Pioch Farrus location there are nine mines.

The tour is very easy and possible for handicapped, as the 200 m of tunnel are completely flat. Helmets are provided. There is a small exhibition and first introductions are given on a computer.