Located in the welcome center, the conservatory is a museum and educational space designed to explain and teach respect for the exceptional milieu of the Ardeche Gorge. Visual aids, quizzes, interactive techniques are the tools used to explain the geological history of this 250 meter thick limestone plateau and its evolution including the creation of the river gorge 6 million years ago. You’ll discover flora and fauna including rare Bonelli’s eagles, peregrine falcons, vultures, carnivorous mammals such as otters and beavers among others being reintroduced to their former habitat.
Human occupation is a major feature of the gorge. Much research has revealed activity in the caves and terraces during the iron and bronze ages. The gorge has been occupied for over 40,000 years. Over 15 caves with paintings have been discovered. The gorge area is a shrine for cave art.
The key functions of the SGGA, the management organization of the Ardeche Gorge, are: protection, research, and awareness/education.
You can discover river rapids, campsites, scenic outlooks, caverns, etc. using the interactive scale model of the gorge in the exhibition space. A film takes you on a thrilling canoe trip through the Ardeche rapids.
Workshops and hikes are programmed regularly by the SGGA team.