Tourist attraction in Normandy – France
The Souterroscope des Ardoisières invites you to visit its underground mines in Caumont l'Eventé, in Calvados.
Discover our 19th century mining operations through an audiovisual animation!
The Souterroscope is an old slate mine which has not been exploited for over 128 years (closed in 1891). Extraction started quite illegally at the foot of the church of Caumont l'Eventé. The Ardoisières de Caumont were the only ones in Normandy to reach a real industrial dimension. The causes of its closure are diverse and varied.
At first, they were victims of the economic crisis of the time and were not sufficiently established to overcome the fall of the building industry ( 1882-1883). Secondly, they were unable to compete with Angevine and the lack of railway lines inevitably caused its loss, since they did not have an effective and reliable means of transport that would enable them to transport their goods safely around.
Discovering the slate mining operation
Discover the underground mines
A SECOND CHANCE
Today, the Ardoisières has got a second chance with a reconversion. Indeed, since May 1, 1994, they are opened for visits. From now on, a unique and unusual sightseeing tour is proposed... From the creation of the world to the discovery of this quarry preserved in its 19th century state, the visitor becomes a miner discovering underground rooms as large as cathedrals... Four rooms are open for visit:
- In the first room, visitors can discover the water table through a video describing the water cycle.
- The second room, "le gouffre de l'Arc en Terre", is the symbol of the pact established between man and mine: a wonderful play of light and water has been set up there.
- The third room proposes a short video on the extraction of the "Caumont blue gold" slate.
- In the fourth and last room, an extraordinary collection of giant crystals and semi-precious stones are naturally displayed for visits.
The visit is 1 hour long. It can either be in French or English.
A guided tour leaves every 12 minutes.
See the wonders of the underworld
Why visit Souterroscope des Ardoisières
Large underground spaces, remnants of the slate exploitation, illuminated water jets...
Learning about the water cycle, geological time scale, mineral exhibition, film screening describing the geode...
We have rooms that can accommodate 50 or 100 people, where you can organise group meals and various events.
35 km from Caen, access by A84, or D9; 25 km from Bayeux, access D6; 30 km from Saint-Lô, access by D11; 90 km from Mont Saint-Michel.