Carved entirely in a natural cave by hermits during the 5th-century, the cave was enlarged, fortified, and used by Benedictine monks as an abbey.
The troglodyte construction is located on top of a limestone hill where a castle was built, which centuries later was demolished leaving the old monastery exposed. The chapel, rooms, cells, cisterns, abbatial thrones, were all carved out of the rocks. On the upper terrace, visitors are treated to an open-air necropolis and an awesome view over the Rhône Valley.
The town of Beaucaire is separated by a bridge from Tarascon, the city of the legendary dragon Tarasque. The abbey is about three miles (five kilometers) away. At the Beaucaire exit, the monastery is indicated by a sign at the roundabout located between Ring Rd and the Nimes Rd.
Know Before You Go
From the parking area, you have to walk along the charming Chemin dels Moines (Path of the Monks), which goes up to the hill where you can find the entrance to the monastery.