Mont-Dauphin travel guide

Photo of Mont-Dauphin

Visit Mont-Dauphin (Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, France)

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Mont-Dauphin is a fortress designed by the famous French military architect called Vauban. The fortified village is in the Hautes-Alpes department of France (in the Provence region), on a cliff above the Durance river and the river Guil.

Explore Mont-Dauphin

Mont Dauphin was built in the late 17th century, early 18th to protect France on its Italian border. Vauban, France's famous military architect, chose the Plateau des Mille Vents to build Mont Dauphin which is a fortified site designed for a civilian population but with a military garrison as well.

In 1713 the Italian border moved further from the site and so the early development was not increased with time, and Mont-Dauphin was never invaded.

View from fortress at Mont-Dauphin

The site and fortress are now a listed historic monument and also a UNESCO World Heritage Site as one of the Vauban designed fortifications of France.

Mont Dauphin is entered through the main building, the officers pavillion which housed the officers. Also on the sight you can see the imposing arsenal. The arsenal had two wings but one of these was destroyed by an Italian bombing raid in 1940.


Around the edge of the village there remain various barracks, one of which is now home to Mont-Dauphin town hall and various craft workshops. The village church commissioned by Vauban remains unfinished as the population of Mont-Dauphin remained small.

Surrounding the buildings of the village are the fortifications with their triangular and half-moon shaped bastions and walls protected by mounds of earth. Walking around the edges of these the views are stupendous - looking out as they do over the crossroads of two valleys. Even if you are not an enthusiast of military architecture it is worth visiting Mont-Dauphin for the views.

Fortified building at Mont-Dauphin

Attractions nearby

Embrun is nearby on the eastern end of the popular leisure lake of Lac de Serre-Poncon, and conveniently placed for excursions into the mountains.

Briancon is not far away and is home to another of Vauban's forts.

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

See also: 

Photos of Mont-Dauphin

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Map of Mont-Dauphin and places nearby


Visit near Mont-Dauphin with France This Way reviews



The silver mines in L'Argentiere la Bessée, very active in the 19th century, are now reopened as a popular tourist attraction

L'Argentiere-la-Bessee guide


The historic centre of Embrun is usually visited at the same time as the leisure lake of Lac de Serre Poncon

Embrun guide


The town of Briancon is best known for its extensive Vauban fortifications, and also has lots to discover in its old town

Briancon guide
Lake Serre-Poncon

Lake Serre-Poncon

Among many beautiful Alpine lakes we mention the Lac de Serre-Poncon because of its spectacular setting and wide range of leisure activities

Lake Serre-Poncon guide
Vallee de l'Ubaye

Vallee de l'Ubaye

Starting near the Lac de Poncon, the Vallée de l'Ubaye is one of the scenic highlights in the Alps

Vallee de l'Ubaye guide


Barcelonnette has an attractive town centre, and also a good number of substantial 'Mexican villas' adding character to the town

Barcelonnette guide

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

Address: Mont-Dauphin, Guillestre, Briançon, Provence, 5600, France || GPS coordinates: latitude 44.67, longitude 6.6244

Plan your visit to Mont-Dauphin, Hautes-Alpes

Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby

  • Mont-Dauphin place forte (Vauban fortifications): heritage site
  • Place Forte de Mont-Dauphin: national monument
  • L'Argentiere-la-Bessee: recommended detour (15 km)
  • Queyras: regional natural parc (18 km)
  • Briancon: secteur sauvegarde (26 km)
  • Briancon fortifications (Vauban fortifications): heritage site (26 km)
  • Lac de Serre-Poncon: site of natural beauty (28 km)
  • Vallee de la Claree: grand site of france (34 km)
  • Cirque de Viso: site of natural beauty (34 km)
  • Source - Verdon: site of natural beauty (39 km)
  • Col de la Bonette: site of natural beauty (41 km)
  • Col d'Allos: site of natural beauty (42 km)

The French version of this page is at Mont-Dauphin (Francais)