Les Grottes de la Balme

Useful Information

Location: At La Balme Les Grottes. 50 km east of Lyon.
Open: FEB Wed, Hol 14-17:30.
MAR Sat, Sun, Hol 11, 14-17.
APR to SEP daily 10-12, 14-18.
OCT Sat, Sun, Hol 11, 14-17.
NOV to DEC Wed, Hol 14-17:30.
Fee: Adults EUR 5.80, Children (4-14) EUR 3.70, Students EUR 4.50. Groups (+): Adults EUR 4, Children (4-14) EUR 2.80. [2004]
Classification: SpeleologyKarst cave
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Dimension: T=13-15 °C.
Guided tours: D=75 min. V=60,000/a [2000]
Address: Les Grottes de la Balme, Le village, 38390 La Balme Les Grottes, Tel: +33-474-906376, Fax: +33-474-906376. 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.
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As French show caves go, this cave, east of Lyon, is a relatively small cave but has a couple of interesting features. There is a chapel built in the large entrance passage, accessed by steps, from the path into the cave, crossing the stream that resurges from the cave. Internally there is a large, well-decororated chamber, part of which has the spectacular gour pools. Finally there is a maze of narrow high level passages, now well polished by the passing of visitors over the years, that intersect the higher parts of the entrance canyon passage and afford impressive, airy views of the passage below and of the chapel.

Text by Dr Richard Shaw (2004), Record No 9 pp 10-11. With kind permission of the author.

Les Grottes de la Balme are famous for numerous Speleothemrimstone pools all over the cave. And the cave visit is improved by numerous multimedia presentations. There is a light and sound show, a video about the life of bats and an infrared camera, which allows visitors to study the bats living in the cave.