The Cova Bastera through the ages

‘The Cova Bastera’ or ‘Fortified Grotto’ has survived many eras, from Ice Age to Prehistory, to Vauban’s times and the Contemporary epoch. It offers an unusual visit and is testimony of Conflent’s exceptional natural heritage.

It was after the Miquelets’ occupation in 1674 that Vauban decided to fortify the cave, to add it to the town’s defenses. It is linked to Villefranche de Conflent by a staircase that comes out on the RN116. Unfortunately, Vauban did not live to see his project implemented as he died the same year as in which the works started, in 1707. In 2008 the site was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Did you know? The temperature in the caves is constant, in winter or summer it remains at 14°C. Make sure you bring a jumper.

Practical information Cova Bastera

Access 

Follow Villefranche de Conflent in the direction Andorra. The Cova Bastera is located in front of the ramparts.

Timetables and visits 

  • La Cova Bastera (no guided tours):

01/04 to 30/06: from 11am to 4pm
01/07 to 31/08: from 10am to 7pm
01/09 to 31/10: from 11am to 4pm
Free entry, leave what you want.