D290-Gorges de l'Ardeche

Travel the D290 road through Gorges de l'Ardeche

D290 is a panoramic road located in southern France’s Ardèche department. It runs along one rim of the Gorges of the Ardèche, providing views over a striking, arid landscape with an immense defile of limestone cliffs which can reach heights of 300 metres high.

Located in the Ardèche valley, the road is paved but narrow and not recommended for people afraid of heights. The Gorges of the Ardèche is the most temperamental French waterway: Its ebbs and flows have created the Grand Canyon of France. Riddled with alluvial deposits, grottoes, caves, and canyons more than 285m (935 ft.) deep, the valley is one of France's most unusual geological spectacles.

The road still remains an adrenaline-pumping journey and is definitely not for the faint of lungs, heart, or legs. The gorges of the Ardèche River form a spectacular canyon over 30 km between Vallon-Pont-d'Arc and Saint-Martin-d'Ardèche. The wild and beautiful scenery of the Gorges d'Ardèche nature reserve features dramatic gorges, chalky white cliffs, and prehistoric caves. The canyon is a tourist attraction, drawing over a million visitors per year, in addition to a rich historical and archeological site.

Located within the Natural Reserve of the Ardèche Gorges, the road is 42.1 km long. The drive, which you can do in a day even if you make frequent stops, stretches between Vallon-Pont-d'Arc and Saint-Just-d'Ardèche. The gorges are locally known as the "European Grand Canyon".