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A view of Pont-en-Royans
A view of Pont-en-Royans
Coat of arms of Pont-en-Royans
Coat of arms
Pont-en-Royans is located in France
Location within Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region
Pont-en-Royans is located in Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes
Coordinates: 45°03′49″N 5°20′36″E / 45.0636°N 5.3433°E / 45.0636; 5.3433Coordinates: 45°03′49″N 5°20′36″E / 45.0636°N 5.3433°E / 45.0636; 5.3433
Country France
Region Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes
Department Isère
Arrondissement Grenoble
Canton Le Sud Grésivaudan
Intercommunality Bourne à l'Isère
 • Mayor (2014–2020) Bernard Grindatto
Area1 2.9 km2 (1.1 sq mi)
Population (2011)2 817
 • Density 280/km2 (730/sq mi)
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
INSEE/Postal code 38319 /38680
Elevation 183–788 m (600–2,585 ft)
(avg. 210 m or 690 ft)

1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km2 (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.

2 Population without double counting: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.

Pont-en-Royans is a commune in the Isère department in southeastern France.


The town is located near the Isère valley at the gates of the Vercors Regional Natural Park. It lies at the meeting of the rivers Bourne (which takes its source in Lans en Vercors) and its tributary the Vernaison (which originates in the territory of Saint-Agnan-en-Vercors). Both torrential rivers collect most of the waters of the Vercors. The left bank and the Vernaison Bourne after the junction is located in the department of Drôme. It also is by the Kidney, a small tributary of the Bourne, which is limited with the Municipality of Saint-André-en-Royans. This is the output of a bottleneck pierced by Bourne where the village takes place: the houses clinging to cliffs Coulmes a buttress of the north side of the massif of Barret and the south side. This bottleneck is limited to the municipalities of Choranche Chatelus. The present municipal is narrow because it is limited to nearby rivers. It has little agricultural land and is more urbanized. Bourne joins the Isère near Saint-Nazaire Royans


The bridge was initially a narrow passage between two rocks allowing an entry point to the Vercors plateau. It was also through the torrent of Bourne whose gorges are steep and narrow. The bridge is narrow, at most three metres, and its entry starts at the height of the Thomas home on the current Picard bridge (unknown origin of the name, which is modern. It is also called the "Pit Picard" Bourne). Villard Road was created in 1872. The current route of St. Eulalie was also created before the end of the nineteenth century, and the movement of carts of wood trunks from Route bottlenecks caused a need for enlargement. Many houses are no longer standing (There were more than three times the number of houses hanging over the abyss in the twenty-first century).

Pont-en-Royans is rich in history as a tourist town. In the archives of Dauphiné there were three castles: The first castle (in the old topographic name) corresponds to the fortified village. The second castle's current remains is above the "three mountain castles". The third castle of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries was destroyed in a bombing in 1945 and is the location of the college. Its walls, which there are only a few vestiges, include "The door of France", "Agnes the door", "door Villeneuve" and "the door of Merle." It is there that the town limit stopped in ancient times. The village and its hanging houses, clinging to the rock, still attract tourists in the summer on the banks of the river the Bourne. The white stone roofs have all but disappeared.

In the nineteenth century, the town was under Napoleon III, better known as the city of Valencia. His fame extended far beyond the borders of France, thanks to the karst rock carved into the Vercors (a feat for the time which contributed greatly to the renowned expertise of French engineering, and all roads in the first Universal Exhibition in Paris).

Bridge Royans was also one of the first three cities (for population) to have electricity in France. Conducting forced water still runs under the city (a museum of water allows people to discover). Electricity is still manufactured in the 1950s electrical equipment for the home: switches, sockets ... (Originally these devices were turned boxwood in which the system is placed in copper)

Filming on boxwood was long one of the main activities of the city.

Pont-en-Royans is being mentioned today in many books of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The first photographic plates representing the hanging houses of Pont-en-Royans Vercors and roads (roads Great bottlenecks Road gorges of the Bourne Bridge Black Ghoul) are now being rediscovered.

During the war of 1939 to 1945, Pont Picard was one of the hubs of the resistance movement.


Twin towns[edit]

Pont-en-Royans is twinned with:


Today, Pont-en-Royans is a village which shows the medieval architecture of the sixteenth century and is famous for its colorful hanging houses. Its original architecture is due to an ingenious adaptation to the environment of the village to promote its trading activity with timber.

  • The water museum aims to explore the water in all its forms. A bar allows water tasting of more than 900 bottled waters of the world.
  • The Choranche caves lead through an underground river of stalactites. Unique amphibians (the proteas) are survivors from the time of dinosaurs.
  • Circus choranche and cascading Gournier.
  • Route des Gorges de la Bourne between Pont-en-Royans and Villard-de-Lans. Corbelled road carved into the rock and classified three stars in the Michelin guide. Work is being undertaken since 2008 to secure the route to the source of many accidents

See also[edit]