Ascenseur à Bateaux In Arques

A unique industrial heritage | Arques

Book your visit

Your visit to the elevator

Your visit to the elevator

Discover the Fontinettes Boat Lift through five visiting areas, offering complete immersion to rediscover the very essence of this exceptional monument. Explore the repair shop, stroll along the towpath and immerse yourself in the sailors' way of life aboard a Freycinet barge.

Ouvert de 14h-18h
Ouvert de 10h-13h et de 14h-18h

The history of Fontinettes

In Arques, and more precisely at a place called “Les Fontinettes”, the Canal de Neuffossé which connects the Lys to L’Aa has a drop of 13.13m.

Until the middle of the 19th century, a ladder of 5 locks was enough to make up for this difference in level, but with the increase in barge traffic on the canal, these very quickly proved to be insufficient. While it was initially planned to double the number of lock ladder chambers, the implementation of the Freycinet plan in 1879 caused the works budget to jump and a new call for projects was launched. Thus, the Boat Lift rose, symbolizing human ingenuity in the face of the challenges of navigation.

Live a unique experience

Live a unique experience

Welcome to the Fontinettes boat lift, we are on August 16, 1967. You are going to meet Jacques, the caretaker, who is leaving for his last round before the lift leaves its place at the main lock.

Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of this atypical place, relive the inauguration and climb aboard a Freycinet barge.

Frequently Asked Questions

2023 Fee Schedule

Denomination Price including VAT
Full price 5€90
Reduced Rate (1) 4€90
Free (2) 0€00
Children's workshop 7€00

School rates

Denomination Price including VAT
School group rates / free visit 2€00
School group rates / guided tour or workshop 5€50

Group rates

Denomination Price including VAT
Adult group rates (>10 people) 4€50
Guided tour adult group rates (>10 people) 8€00
Multipurpose room rental by the day (9am-6pm) 180€

Reduced rates applicable (upon presentation of proof)

(1) Children 4-15 years old / Students / Seniors (+ 60 years old) / Large family / Accompanying visitor with a disability / Tourism professionals

(2) 4 years old / Job seekers and RSA beneficiaries / People with disabilities / International Counci of Museum members / Education Pass * / Journalists / Guides-lecturers

Online: bank card.

On site: bank card, cash, bank checks, ANCV checks, ANCV Connect.

By bus (Lines 3 or 6):

Stop: Arques Center Ville (Place) Please note: no bus on Sundays and public holidays!

Information :

By train:

The nearest station is Saint-Omer station (Site TER Hauts de France)

Information :

By email :

By postal route: 2 Chem. de la Digue du Smetz 62510 ARQUES