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All information gathered first-hand, since 1995

Although the town is ancient and still has many old buildings, it's well restored and seems very neat and modern. It's a pleasant enough town, with several squares, and a pedestrian zone with shops and market stands. At the Office de Tourisme, in grand looking old building, probably an old church, you can get a free map of the town.

There are enough narrow old streets to make exploring interesting, and the main pedestrian street through the center is an active market place. The Place E. Barthelon, in the center of the old town, has a large fountain, several terrace cafés and other shops, and a Provençal-pastel city hall [photo-3]

The Cathedral Notre-Dame-du-Réal is an impressive building, and the main portail, "le Réal" is listed as a remarkable example of Lombard art. We especially like the lions supporting the rose-marble columns. (A copy inspired by these supports the "réal" of the church in Guillestre, and we found a pair of identical lions, also holding their prey between their paws, supporting the columns of the church in St Véran.)

Behind the 12th-c Cathedral is the 12th-c donjon Tour Brune [photo-4]

We toured the town by searching out the old fountains, of which Embrun has several. Many of the fountains are of a similar style to this 16th-c one on Rue Chaffuel [photo-5]. We found other ancient stone fountains at Place St Marcelin, Place E. Barthelon, and a small one between the Cathedral and the Tour Brune. On the Square Lapeyrouse at the west side of town is a 17th-c rose-marble fountain with a column dedicated to the Chasseurs Alpins [photo-6].


We found only one sundial (cadran solaire) in Embrun, a rather fantasy version, on the Place E. Barthelon [photo-7].


There's a shady little park area at the edge of town past the Cathedral, at the edge of the "Roc" overlooking the Durance valley.

History of Embrun


First record, Eburodunum

Gallo-Roman: Eburodunum was an important Roman town on the Briançon--Arles Roman road. In the 4th century, a bishopry was founded here by Saint Marcellin. In 804, the bishop became an archbishop, and soon after Embrun was attached to the Germanic Roman empire Saint-Empire.

Tourist Office

Tel : 04 92 43 72 72; Fax: 04 92 43 54 06




Market: every Wed and Sat


  • Rafting and kayaking on the Durance.
  • Mountain biking (VTT cycling), with 380 km of marked routes.
  • Canyoning
  • Horse riding
  • A multitude of water sports on the adjacent Lac Serre-Ponçon


• GPS: 44.565643, 6.496891


Didier Richard (1/50,000) #7 "Hautes Alpes"

Didier Richard (1/50,000) #10 "Queyras Pays du Viso"

A short, marked trail leads from the town northwest up the flank of Mont Guillaume to join the GR50 (2 km, 1286 m).

To the west, the GR50 circles the flanc of Mont Guillaume, follows the river valley to Les Gourniers (about 15 km), then comes back southeast before again going west to Ancelle and beyond. To the northeast, The GR50 goes past Châteaureaux and St Marcellin and points north.

There are other shorter trails on the east side of Mont Guillaume, and there are some loops possible using part of the GR50. Because of the steep rocky nature of the northern part of the mountain, no trails circle Mont Guillaume other than following the river valley northwest of St Marcellin, well to the north.

Southeast of Embrun, a trail crosses the river and goes out past St Sauveur, then through the Forêt du Meale or southeast to Les Orres.

Transportation Embrun

Bus Marseille - Gap - Briancon

  • The Marseille - Gap - Briancon bus route is: Marseille, Aix-en-Provence, Meyrargues, Peyrolles, Mirabeau, Corbières, Sainte Tulle, Manosque, Volx, Villeneuve, La Brillanne, Lurs, Peyruis, Saint Auban, Chateau-Arnoux, Volonne, Peipin, Les Bons Enfants, Sisteron, Le Poet, Rourebeau, Le Beynon, Valenty, Monetier-Allemont, Le Vivas, La Saulce, Tallard, Chateauvieux, La Tourronde, Gap; La Batie Neuve, Chorges, Savines, Embrun, Chateauroux, Guillestre, Mont-Dauphin, L'Argentière, Briançon.
       Trip time Marseille - Gap is 3h15 (Marseille - Manosque 1h20; Manosque - Sisteron 0h50; Sisteron - Gap 1hr). The separate bus between Gap and Briançon is just under 2 hours.
       The route and schedule is available on the SCAL-Autocars website (link just below).
  • Web:

Department 05, Haute-Alpes Buses

  • See Beyond's Haute-Alpes (05) Bus Schedules for downloading Haute-Alpes bus-lines map and bus-line schedules [pdf for each line] (link for PDF files).

Grenoble - Gap - Embrun - Briançon Train

  • This rail link connects Grenoble and Briançon. The schedule (link, below) shows connecting trains between Grenoble and Paris. One train a day is direct between Grenoble and Briançon; all of the others change trains at Gap.
    The Grenoble-Gap route is: Grenoble, Pont-de-Claix, Jarrie-Vizille, St-Georges-de- Vif, Monestier-de-Cl, Clelles-Mens, Lus-la-Croix-Haut, Aspres Buëch, Veynes Dévouly, Gap.
    The Gap - Embrun - Briançon route is: Gap, Chorges, Embrun, Mont-Dauphin (gare SNCF), L'Argentière-les-Ecrins, Briançon.
    Grenoble-Gap trip time is about 2h15.
    Gap-Briançon trip time is about 1h20.
    The same-train Grenoble-Briançon trip time is about 3h40
    The route and schedule (PDF) is available on the PACA Region website (link just below).
  • Web:

Marseille - Gap - Briançon Bus

  • The Marseille - Gap - Briançon route is served mostly by train, but some bus, depending on the schedule (see the link, below). This route is in two parts: Marseille-Gap and Gap-Briançon.
    The Marseille - Gap route is: Marseille, Aix-en-Provence, Meyrargues, Manosque/Gréoux-les-Bains, La Brillane/Oraison, Chateau-Arnoux/St-Auban, Chateau-Arnoux, Sisteron, Laragne, Serres, Veynes Dévoluy, Gap (gare SNCF).
    The Gap - Embrun - Briançon route is: Gap (gare SNCF), Chorges, Embrun, Montdauphin/Guillestre (gare SNCF), L'Argentière-les-Ecrins, Briançon.
    Marseille-Gap trip time is about 3h20.
    Gap-Briançon trip time is about 1h30.
    Some are same-train lines, Marseille-Briançon, about 4h45.
    The route and schedule (PDF) is available on the PACA Region website (link just below).
    The Marseille-Briançon route and schedule is available on the SCAL-Autocars website (link below); select Marseille / Briançon and click on one symbol to view the route map, click on the other symbol for the schedule. (Schedule link
  • Web:

Serres - Gap - Embrun - Briançon

  • The Serres - Veynes - Gap - Embrun - Briançon route is served by train or bus, depending on the schedule (see the link, below). This route is in two parts: Serres-Veynes-Gap and Gap-Embrun-Briançon.
    The Serres-Veynes-Gap route is: Serres, Aspremont, Aspres Buëch, Veynes Dévouly, Montmaur, La roche des Arauds, La freissinouse, Gap (gare SNCF).
    The Serres - Veynes - Gap - Embrun - Briançon route is: Gap (gare SNCF), Chorges, Savines, Embrun, Chateauroux, Guillestre, Montdauphin (gare SNCF), L'Argentière-les-Ecrins, Briançon.
    Serres-Gap trip time is about 0h45.
    Gap-Briançon trip time is about 1h45.
    The route and schedule (PDF) is available on the PACA Region website (link just below).
  • Web:

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