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Aubenas is a commune in the arrondissement of Largentière. It is located in the Ardèche department in the Rhone Valley in the southeast of France, just west of the Alps. It is a great location with mountains and the Ardèche river flowing through the commune and has about 12,000 inhabitants. Aubenas is part of the "Pays d'Aubenas-Vals". This area contains 10 towns and villages with a total of around 24,000 people. Aubenas has a good position regarding tourism, as a regional natural park, the zone of the Ardèche river canyon, and the start of the mountain ranges (like the Alps) are all nearby.

Aubenas has a prestigious past and is known for its rich cultural, architectural and industrial heritage. Nicknamed La Medievale and La Cité des Montlaur, the town is home to many magnificent monuments from the Middle Ages such as the castle which is listed as a historical monument, the Dôme Saint-Benoît and the Maison Delichères (House of Gargoyles). Aubenas is a perfect base to explore the region and its surroundings which has The Ardèche Gorges, Ardèche Mountains (Mont Gerbiec-de-Jonc which is the source of river Loire), Cevennes mountain range and numerous medieval and typical villages (Largentière, Vogue, Balazuc, etc.) which are worth a visit.

Aubenas is an active and vibrant town in an economic sense too, as it is the centre of the Chamber of Commerce of the southern part of Ardèche. The town has about 350 shops where you can buy varied things, from clothes to food and traditional local stuff. The town is also famous for the chestnut production as well as has some great varieties of cheese and processed meat. Tourism, commerce and food-industry are the three main pillars which sustain the economy and bring prosperity to the region



Sights and Activities

  • Château d'Aubenas.
  • Maison Delichères (House of Gargoyles)
  • The Saint Laurent composite church.
  • Dôme Saint-Benoît




Aubenas has warm, dry and sunny summer weather from June to September with generally temperatures between 25 and 28 degrees Celcius during the day and pleasant nights. Sometimes, heavy rainshowers and thunderstorms occur during this time. Winters last from December to March, when frost at night is common but it rarely gets really cold. Sometimes there is some snow (mainly on higher parts) but temperatures are usually just above zero on most days.



Getting There

By Plane

Marseille Provence Airport (MRS) near Marseille and Saint-Exupéry International Airport (LYS) near Lyon are the airports closest by with a significant number of flights throughout Europe and a few places beyond.

By Train

The nearest train stations are at Valence and Montelimar, which can be reached by approximately one hour's drive from Aubenas. High speed TGV trains connect Valence/Montelimar to most of the major towns of the region. SNCF operates the rail network in France.

By Car

Aubenas is just west of the main highway, the Route du Soleil (A7), which runs south from Lyon towards Montpellier and branches south of the town towards Marseille.





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Keep Connected


France is one of the best connected countries in the world, with data speed for upload/download ranked among the top 5 in the world. Most hotels and hostels would have in-house facilities to provide free internet access. Many major cities also have initiatives put in place to provide free wi-fi connection in public spaces. Alternatively there are internet cafés available in most cities/towns at a reasonable rate. Some private businesses, such as local cafés (or even the Starbuck's chain), may also provide wi-fi connectivity - keep an eye out for the signs by the shop windows/doors. Also look for the @ symbol prominently displayed, which indicates internet availability. However, with most homes now wired for the internet, cyber cafés are increasingly hard to find, especially outside the major cities.


See also: International Telephone Calls

To dial an international number from France, the IDD is 00, followed by the country code that you wish to dial, the area code and the phone number.
To call France from abroad, start with the international direct dialing (IDD) code from the country you're in, followed by French country code 33, the area code (drop the first zero in front of the area code), and the phone number. French telephone numbers are rarely given without the area code. The telephone number, including the area code, is made up of 10 digits. They are written in a set of 5 pairs of digits (i.e. 01 xx xx xx xx xx).
In France, the area code designations are: 01 - Paris Area ("Région Ile-de-France"), 02 - northwest, 03 - northeast, 04 - southeast, 05 - southwest, 06 - mobile phone providers. From 2010 onwards, 07 will also be assigned to mobile phone providers in order to cater for the surging demands for mobile phones.

Emergency numbers are 15 (medical aid), 17 (police station) and 18 (fire/rescue). You can also use the European emergency number 112 (perhaps a better choice if you don't speak French). These calls are free and accessible from virtually any phone, including locked cellphones.

France uses the GSM standard of cellular phones (900 MHz and 1800 MHz bands) used in most of the world outside of the U.S. There are several companies (Orange, SFR, Free, Bouygues Télécom and some others MVNOs like Virgin Mobile) offering wireless service. The country is almost totally covered but you may have difficulties using your mobile phone in rural or mountainous areas. If you stay for some time, it may be advisable to buy a pre-paid cell phone card that you can use in any phone that supports the GSM standard on the 900/1800 MHz bands. Then incoming calls and SMSes are free.


La Poste in France is also referred to as the PTT (short for postes, télégraphes et téléphones). The mailboxes are painted bright yellow and often there is a slot for local city mail and another slot for "outside mail". Normally there is a queue in the post office, but most of the post offices have the self service machine installed which is quite easy to operate. Nowadays many of the tabac and even some of the souvenir shops also sell postage stamps. Normally an overseas postcard costs almost as much as sending a letter. Mails sent in France also have a zip code. The first two numbers represent the administrative department (e.g. in Paris' case that would be 75).

Post offices are generally open from 8:00am to 7:00pm Monday through Friday, and 8:00am to noon on Saturdays. Apart from the basic job of mailing letters, most of the post offices do some banking activities also and some even have photocopy machines and cyber cafes for internet access.

For international package services, you might also check options with companies like DHL, UPS or TNT, which have competitive services and prices and might be faster in most cases.

Quick Facts


  • Latitude: 44.619277
  • Longitude: 4.388552

Accommodation in Aubenas

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This is version 8. Last edited at 8:04 on Sep 20, 13 by Utrecht. 1 article links to this page.

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