Fort L'Ecluse, Leaz

4.3
#7 of 12 in Historic Sites in Ain
The Fort l'Écluse is close to the village of Collonges, Ain in Eastern France. It commands the Rhone valley and is a natural entrance into France from Switzerland between the Vuache hills and the Jura Mountains.The fort was founded by a Duke of Savoy, and completed by Vauban in the reign of Louis XIV. It was destroyed by the Austrians in 1815, but was rebuilt by the French, and at the same time considerably strengthened and heightened. The high-road intersects a portion of this fortification.Description and constructionThe lower fort, near the level of the Rhône, was rebuilt between 1816 and 1828. The route national 84 passed through the fort until 1939 when it was relocated to a tunnel through the rock behind the fort, defended by a casemate in the tunnel built as part of the Maginot Line fortification program. The casemate was intended to receive 47mm anti-tank guns, but was never equipped. It is linked to the lower fort by a tunnel. The Fort l'Écluse was the largest component of the otherwise weakly fortified Defensive Sector of the Rhône.The upper fort is 200m above the lower fort. Its location allows the upper fort to control the valley, including the railroad viaduct, and to protect the lower fort. It was built between 1834 and 1848. Today, the lower fort and the subterranean steps and casemates cut into the rock above it, up to and including terraces just below the upper fort, are open during the summer months for visiting, however the upper fort is not currently safe for visitors. Furthermore, a moderately difficult via ferrata exists which takes climbers from the lower fort to the upper fort by traversing the rocky hillside. In addition, there are many hiking trails in the area which allow hikers access to the upper fort.
Plan to visit Fort L'Ecluse and other customer-reviewed, writer-recommended Leaz attractions using our Leaz itinerary planner.
Source
Create an itinerary including Fort L'Ecluse
map
Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
64 reviews
Google
4.3
TripAdvisor
  • August 6, 2017
    I have lived in the region for many years and never took the opportunity to visit the Fort and I am glad that I now have. It is definitely worth taking the time to go. We picnicked whilst we were ther...  more »
  • August 5, 2017
    The tour is very interesting. Don't be afraid of the stairs. The explanatory are clear. Since August 5 they have installed an adventure on the facades of the fort trail. C is great and the view is breathtaking. Do not get dizzy. I recommend!
    View original
  • July 22, 2017
    A visit without hesitation, is worth a visit. Focus on a fine day for the view. Good shoes to climb the steps.
    View original
Google
  • June 10, 2017
    Absolutely fantastic place. Plan minimum 2 hours as climbing the upper fort is not an eye blink. Views unforgettable. A must to see while being around.
  • July 22, 2017
    Great museum. Bring your old, forgotten French knowledge!
  • November 20, 2016
    Great museum, fantastic view to Savoie. Very interesting and educational, guide keep it nice and clean. DO recommend to take the smaller road and visit
  • June 26, 2017
    Amazing place, great view.
  • May 17, 2016
    The Via Ferrata is just a short and easy drive from Geneva. When you go through the tunnel turn left immediately. There is a parking. From there you have a five minute walk to the base of the Via Ferrata. The via ferrata is a pleasant and easy via for those with experience. There are two or three moments when novices may be afraid. At these points be patient and courteous with them. Offer them a drink and snack to recover some energy before moving on. Go with an experienced individual. People have been trapped on this via ferrata so do not underestimate it.

Plan your trip to Leaz

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Where to stay in Leaz

Browse hotels, guesthouses, and unique homes and book your stay on the world's leading accommodation sites.
Live like a local, find unique places to stay
Millions of travel reviews on TripAdvisor

Plans in Ain by other users

1 day in Divonne-les-Bains BY A USER FROM SOUTH AFRICA October, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: October, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 30 days in Europe BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA November, popular PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Ferney-Voltaire & Aigle BY A USER FROM SWITZERLAND November, popular PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in Belley & Santiago de Compostela BY A USER FROM URUGUAY August, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 14 days in Vonnas BY A USER FROM MAURITIUS September, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: September, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 11 days in Switzerland, Divonne-les-Bains & Salzburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, culture, outdoors, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 11 days in Switzerland, Divonne-les-Bains & Salzburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 11 days in Switzerland, Divonne-les-Bains & Salzburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 9 days in Switzerland, Divonne-les-Bains & Salzburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, culture, outdoors, historic sites, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 10 days in Switzerland, Divonne-les-Bains & Austria BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, culture, outdoors, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 40 days in Italy, France & Geneva BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 15 days in Switzerland, France & Milan BY A USER FROM SAUDI ARABIA August, kids, popular PREFERENCES: August, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
View more plans