Top things to do

Gastronomy in Alès

L'Esprit des Mets

Industrial Alès – and especially its business park 3km south of the centre across the river – is the last place you'd expect to find a fine-dining diamond, but foodies flock here; book ahead. In his open kitchen, ch…
Gardens in Alès

Bambouseraie de Prafrance

It’s more than 160 years since the first shoots of this rambling, mature bamboo grove were planted by a spice merchant returning from the tropics. Here in Générargues, 12km southwest of Alès, 150 bamboo species as w…
Museum in Alès

Musée du Désert

In the village of Le Mas Soubeyran (17km west of Alès), this intriguing museum traces the history of the Camisard revolt, a bloody religious struggle that raged in the early 1700s between the Catholic armies of Loui…
French in Alès

L'Assiette Alésienne

Mirrored walls, black tables, rattan chairs and suspended downlights create a contemporary setting for well-prepared French dishes such as beef fillet and grilled squid. There's a pavement terrace in summer.
Italian in Alès

Le Bellagio

Opening onto a terrace on Alès' liveliest square, busy Le Bellagio serves Italian classics from steaming pizzas to pastas that are a cut above, as well as salads and mains including rib steaks and escalope of veal w…
Farm in Alès

La Caracole

Delving into ‘the astonishing, exciting world of the snail’, this working snail farm 12km north of Alès has a simple museum devoted to the slimy creatures, and runs guided tours followed by the obligatory snail-tast…