France // The Alps and Franche-Comté //

Fort de la Bastille

The Bastille’s main draw is its spectacular views. At your feet, the Isère flows under old bridges which join the St-Laurent quarter (a home for Italian immigrants in the later 1800s) on the northern bank of the river to the nucleus of the medieval town. Even this far south, if you look northeast on a clear day you can see the distant white peaks of Mont Blanc further up the deep valley of the Isère. To the east, snowfields gleam in the high gullies of the Belledonne massif (2978m). To the southeast is the peak of Le Taillefer (2807m), while further to the south you can make out the mountain pass which the famous Route Napoléon crosses on its way northwards from the Mediterranean. This was the road towards Paris that Napoleon took after his escape from Elba in March 1815. Finally, to the west you can admire Moucherotte (1901m), the highest peak of the Vercors massif, and the mountain which most seems to dominate the city beneath.

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