Breil-sur-Roya travel guide

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Visit Breil-sur-Roya (Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, France)

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The small town of Breil-sur-Roya is at the southern end of the Upper Roya Valley between Sospel and Tende, in an attractive location on a broad meander in the river Roya with steep hills rising all around the town.

Exploring Breil-sur-Roya

There is parking space in the centre of Breil-sur-Roya, close to the tourist office and old town, and the best place to start your visit. The town is also a stop on the train line called the Train des Merveilles that operates between Nice and Tende.

Mountains behind the town

First take a stroll along the river front to better appreciate the town and the surrounding landscapes - very impressive with the forested hills rising steeply on all sides of the town.

The central square contains a cafe and the tourist office and also the three principal religious monuments in Breil-sur-Roya are close by:

- the Church of Sancta Maria in Albis is the principal church for the town. It was built over the last four decades of the 17th century and a baroque facade added early in the 18th century. The rear of the church (the side of the river) shows more of the original design of the church. Be sure to enter to see the extensive use of marble decoration, the painted ceiling and the gilded capital stones.


- the Chapel Sainte Catherine was built against the ramparts of the medieval town, has a neo-classical facade and was used by the Penitents Blancs community in Breil-sur-Roya

- the Chapel of the Misericorde is a baroque style chapel of the 17th century, and has the most interesting facade of the three churches (although rather neglected). Note the belltower and dome covered in coloured tiles to one side of the chapel.

Behind these squares and running parallel to the river the narrow streets of the old town are interesting with several of the tall buildings painted in attractive pastel colours.

Breil-sur-Roya above the river

Attractions nearby

Most visits to Breil will be part of a tour of the picturesque Upper Roya valley. Particular highlights include the village of Saorge, a few kilometres north of Breil-sur-Roya, La Brigue, the mountain town at Tende, and the chance to explore the Mercantour National Park and the Valley des Merveilles.

You can find more travel ideas in the Alpes-Maritimes guide and the Provence guide.

See also: 

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The village of Saorge is spread along a high ridge, with dramatic views to the Tende Valley

Saorge guide


Between Menton and the mountains, the river and fortified bridge are a very scenic part of the town of Sospel

Sospel guide
Sospel cathedral

Sospel cathedral

The cathedral in Sospel is an impressive example of baroque architecture in a small town

Sospel cathedral guide


Castellar is a small 15th century village in the hills above Menton with various historic monuments to see

Castellar guide


Sainte-Agnes is the highest coastal village in Europe, 800 metres above sea-level and close to Menton - although the road here is rather steep and winding!

Sainte-Agnes guide
La Brigue

La Brigue

La Brigue is a small, pleasant town to explore, and nearby visit the Sanctuary of Notre-Dame des Fontaines with its astonishing 15th century frescoes

La Brigue guide

... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Alpes-Maritimes

Address: Breil-sur-Roya, Nice, Provence, 6540, France || GPS coordinates: latitude 43.938056, longitude 7.515

Plan your visit to Breil-sur-Roya, Alpes-Maritimes

Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby

  • Saorge Monastery: national monument (6 km)
  • Sainte-Agnes: most beautiful village (16 km)
  • La citronneraie: remarkable garden (18 km)
  • Palais Carnolès: remarkable garden (18 km)
  • Serre de la Madone: remarkable garden (18 km)
  • Menton: secteur sauvegarde (18 km)
  • Coaraze: most beautiful village (19 km)
  • Cirque du Gelas: site of natural beauty (23 km)
  • Trophy of Augustus: national monument (23 km)
  • Tete de Chien: site of natural beauty (25 km)
  • Caires de Cougourde: site of natural beauty (26 km)
  • Cascade de Gairaut: site of natural beauty (30 km)

Market days in Breil-sur-Roya, France

Regular market(s) are held in Breil-sur-Roya each Tuesday all day. (Markets are held in the morning unless stated.)

The French version of this page is at Breil-sur-Roya (Francais)