An Unusual Station on the Causse Méjean

The Speleo Station: A Reception and Information Desk on Your Arrival

The Speleo Station is where your trip through space and time begins, to transport you to another world. An underground funicular railway takes you effortlessly to the cavity entrance. From the arrival platform, you’ll be instantly blown away by the panoramic view over the entire cave and its forest of 400 stalagmites.


To prepare your trip, you’ll find next to the departure platform:


  • the ticket desk, open from 10am
  • the station terminal where you can visit the exhibition about the iconic sites, people and objects from the early days of the Grands Causses region’s speleology adventure
  • the video room, to learn about the saga of the Company through the rocky ruins of the blockfields of the Cité de Pierres and the Aven Armand
  • the souvenir shop to prolong your journey to the centre of the Earth
  • the strength of this building lies in its post-modern style which ensures it will always remain an original feature in the heart of the Causse Méjean.

Before or after your visit, come to the Speleo Café to enjoy a meal or a drink with your friends or family, or just to snack on a delicious Causse-style platter.

A Spot of History…

The Speleo Station: An Unusual Station on the Causse Méjean

When the cave opened to the public in 1927, visitors entered it on foot. From the ticket desk above ground on the Causse Méjean, they walked down a flight of 382 steps in a 208-metre tunnel, to the entrance of the main cavity. In 1963, to make the descent and, more importantly, the return to the surface easier, the tunnel was widened to accommodate a funicular railway, shortening the journey time to 1½ minutes. It is one of 19 funiculars operating in France, but with two particularities: Unlike most funicular railways, whose purpose is to make it easy to climb a hill or a steep slope, the “little train” of the Aven Armand cave serves to take visitors underground. It is mounted on tyres (a first in Europe) to avoid noise and vibrations that would harm the stalagmites and make the tour less pleasant. This investment was a great success as visitor numbers rose significantly and an increase in capacity soon became necessary. In 1972, a new reception building was built to replace the three original basic installations and increase the capacity of the funicular railway. Its monumental architecture of bold, contemporary style was designed by the architect E. Pinetre, its very scale announcing the significance of the journey into the subterranean world that awaited visitors. The modern structure built next to a cave millions of years old was in step with the development goals and architectural recommendations of that era. There was a large waiting room with ticket desks in the upper section and, slightly lower down, a departure hall providing access to the platforms. A bar and souvenir shop were installed in a small, separate building a few metres away from the Speleo Station. The opening ceremony took place on 17 June 1972 in the presence of the Tourism Minister, Mr Anthonioz. Nowadays, nearly 50 years on, the layout has been changed to facilitate movement and adapt to the modern lifestyle. Ticket sales are now with the shop in the lower hall and the upper waiting room has been transformed into an exhibition hall. The strength of this building lies in its post-modern style which ensures it will always remain an original feature in the heart of the Causse Méjean.

Le funiculaire de l’Aven Armand, petit train de la grotte et seul funiculaire de Lozère fait partie des 19 funiculaires de France :