The Millau Viaduct has run out of superlatives to describe it – the highest, the biggest, the most beautiful, the most prodigious, the most this, the most that… And yet no superlative, however appropriate it may be, will ever match the emotion felt upon seeing this wonder, be it vertically either from the ground or from the air, from one of the many specially fitted viewpoints, or better again, from the car steering wheel as you start driving across it.

Facts and figures

  • Length: 2,460 m

  • Width: 32m

  • Maximum height: 343m – that’s 19m taller than the Eiffel Tower

  • Gradient: 3.025% northbound

  • Radius of curvature: 20km

  • Height of the tallest pier (P2): 245m

  • Height of the pylons: 87m

  • Number of piers: 7

  • Number of cable-stays: 154 (11 pairs per pylon)

  • Tension of the cable-stays: 900t-1,200t for the longest stays

  • Weight of the steel deck: 36,000t – that’s 5 Eiffel Towers or 70 TGVs

  • Construction cost: 400 million Euros

  • Construction duration: 3 years (December 2001 – December 2004)

  • 14th December 2001: foundation stone laid

  • 14th December 2004: inauguration by French President Jacques Chirac

  • 16th December 2004: open to traffic

  • Guarantee: 120 years

  • Speed limit: 110kph

  • 32 million vehicles have crossed the Viaduct since it opened

Spectacular viewpoints of the viaduct

1 – Viaduc de Millau motorway services area, in Brocuéjouls

Follow signs for Rodez, Cahors and the A75. 5kms north of Millau, turn left at the roundabout, following the sign marked Aire du Viaduc.

2 – Viaduc Espace Info (Viaduct Information Centre)

Leaving Millau, take the Albi-Toulouse road passing under the Viaduct. Turn right at the roundabout at the foot of the Viaduct piers.

3 – Cap de Coste-Brunas (Light vehicles only)

Leaving Millau, take the D992 road towards Albi/Toulouse. Coming out of the village of Creissels, take the first road climbing up on the left and follow the signs for Brunas, Aire de vision du viaduc.

4 – The listed village of Peyre

Leaving Millau, take the D96 road towards Comprégnac for 7kms.

5 – Le « Panoramique »

Leaving Millau, take the D809 towards Montpellier as far as the sign for Les Fermes du Larzac (Larzac Farms). Do a U-turn to go back down towards Millau. Le Panoramique is on your right.

6 – Roof-top terrace of the Beffroi de Millau (Belfry)

Open from Easter until the Heritage Days in September.

7 – Pont Lerouge (Lerouge Bridge) in Millau

On the way out of Millau, heading for Creissels.

8 – Belvédère de Luzençon (panoramic viewpoint)

Leaving Millau, take the Albi-Toulouse road as far as St Georges de Luzençon and the Belvedere (not recommended for camper vans).

9 – The road to the Causse Noir and the Pouncho d’Agast

Leaving Millau, take the Causse Noir road, towards Montpellier le Vieux. Viewpoints all the way up, as well as from the take-off point for gliders and paragliders at the top of the Pouncho d’Agast hill.