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Practical information

Good to know before departure

Canoe Ardeche

You embark on a unique experience in the heart of the Ardèche Gorges Nature Reserve.

To be able to go canoeing with Alpha Bateaux, all participants must:

Be over 7 years old, know how to swim at least 25 meters and know how to immerse yourself.
You must be in good health and wear a buoyancy aid, but also wear closed shoes during the hike. 

We will make every effort to ensure that you can enjoy a superb experience as a couple, with family or friends.

On site, you will find:

- A multilingual welcome
- Free private parking
- Toilets
- Picnic tables
- A shop (sale of water shoes, cords for glasses, sarong , caps, drinks, ice cream...)
- Rental of wetsuits, windbreakers, tents, and bivouac pack 

You benefit from an exceptional and preserved natural site. Let's respect our environment

- Respect the fauna and flora
- Bring back all your rubbish after your walk
- Respect the river, prefer to wear anti-UV clothing rather than sunscreen
- Respect the other users of the river the river and pass off the sinners


For all routes, we meet at our base ALPHA BATEAUX in Vallon Pont d'Arc, you will leave your vehicle there in our private and free car park. Upon your arrival, you will be welcomed, advised and equipped by our team. You will take an Alpha Bateaux shuttle to reach the starting point, then board a canoe. On arrival, shuttles will pick you up at the set return time, to take you back to the base.

Descents of the Ardèche

Conditions: be over 7 years old, know how to swim 25 meters minimum and know how to immerse yourself.
You will need to be in good health and wear a buoyancy aid, as well as wear and keep closed shoes while hiking.

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To take for the descent

It is recommended to wear sports clothes (swimsuits, T-shirts, closed shoes). You will have to bring food and drink for your daily activities, but also, depending on the weather, your sun protection (creams, glasses with drawstring, hats, etc.), a sweatshirt, a windbreaker and a change of clothes. . For multi-day trips, plan all the camping essentials (sleeping bag, tent, food, drink, flashlight, etc.).


The boat park includes 1, 2 or 3-seater, unsinkable, self-draining kayaks (Tarka, Balawika, Optimo, Taiki and Trek) and Canadian canoes (Canadia, Old Town). In small equipment, we provide you with: CE buoyancy aid vests, single and double paddles, containers for personal effects and helmet (optional).
Our buoyancy aid vests and cans are disinfected after each use.
As an option, you can rent neoprene suits, comfort backrests for Optimo and a bivouac pack (tent, foam mattress, stove, meals, trash bag).

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The bivouac areas

The bivouac areas are large natural spaces in the heart of the Ardèche Gorges Nature Reserve on the edge of the river.
You will find toilets, showers and a caretaker for urgent problems.
Some useful information before your departure:
Alcohol prohibited in the bivouac areas.
Barbecue and camping gas prohibited until September 30, 2022
Navigation prohibited after 8 p.m.
Reservation of the bivouac by you .

For all the descents of the Ardèche in several days:


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The cans provided

To make your canoe trip in the heart of the Ardèche, we provide you with cans to store your personal effects. But be careful, the watertightness of the cans is not guaranteed, this being subject to closure by the users.

We do not recommend that you take water-fearful items such as cameras or phones on board. We advise you to take small plastic bags like freezer bags.

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The application

The free "Canoe France" application allows you to discover the routes on offer, to locate yourself on the river, to discover accessible services (restaurants, campsites, shops, etc.), but also to find out more about the river in through remarkable points (monuments, natural curiosities, etc.). This application is available on Apple and Android.

The accesses

North access: from Lyon A7 exit Montélimar sud, N7 to Pierrelatte, D13 to Bourg-Saint-Andéol, then D4 to Vallon Pont d'Arc.

South access: from Marseille A7 exit Bollène, D994 to Pont-Saint-Esprit, N86 towards Vallon Pont d'Arc and take the road to the Ardèche gorges D290.

South access: from Montpellier A9 exit Nîmes Ouest, N106 towards Alès, D16 then D979 towards Barjac, D579 to Vallon Pont d'Arc.


In April, May, June and September, we are open 7 days a week, from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. In July and August, we are open 7 days a week from 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. We advise you to book in advance, subject to navigation and weather conditions.

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The domestic animals

The Gorges de l'Ardèche Nature Reserve prohibits dogs in canoes. The 24, 30, 36 and 60 km routes are therefore affected by this ban. For the 6, 8, 12 and 14 km routes, we do not recommend it, but your dog can occupy the middle seat in a canoe as long as it is not tied up. Your dog is under your sole responsibility and must not disturb anyone during the descent and return by bus.

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In case of bad weather

In the Ardèche and its tributaries, there is a water level measurement system to anticipate floods and regulate descents. Different levels of dangerousness are then put in place: green, open to all, orange, open to experienced with a monitor, red, prohibited. If the weather is bad (persistent rain, temperature below 20 ° C, wind over 60 km / h), reservations are canceled or postponed. All sums paid will be returned to you.

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