Megève, within it, is endowed with a rich and remarkable cultural heritage. A pioneering resort, it still cultivates the soul of a true alpine village around its ancestral architecture, its pastoral festivals and its family atmosphere. Rooted in a tradition that is both rural through its agricultural heritage and chic through the Rothschild family, the spirit of Megève resides in a perfect blend of past and modernity.

Discover Megève's heritage

The timeless charm of the village of Megève is due to one essential factor: it existed long before the advent of skiing! First and foremost an agricultural town, Megève was built around a strong religious culture and a predominant agro-pastoral heritage.

Thus, majestically enthroned in the heart of the village, the Saint Jean-Baptiste church has been watching over the people of Megève for centuries. Historical monuments like this one, the village of Megève abounds. Testimony of past ways of life, these buildings shape unique cultural landscapes that give the impression of traveling back in time. Often invisible to busy contemporaries, the religious heritage also contributes to shaping the landscape of Megève. Even if their function may have disappeared and their meaning lost, chapels, oratories, crosses, washhouses, fountains, bread ovens or even mills are hidden here and there, just before your eyes.

© Daniel DURAND

Strolling through the cobbled streets of the village, the first vestige of its pastoral life, it is not uncommon to also observe old buildings frozen in time, local producers and craftsmen armed with ancestral know-how, horse-drawn carriages crossing the main square or events celebrating traditions.

Proud of its culture and its heritage, Megève has known how to respect its history which it now honors during guided tours, activities and events that have now become essential.

© Marie BOUGAULT – Municipality of Megève

Did you know?

Although Megève has developed over the years, the religious heritage remains very present with notably six chapels, around sixty oratories and around twenty crosses. At the edge of a path or at the top of a pass, they protected those who passed through them. Near a field or an alpine pasture, they diffused their power of protection over the livestock and the products of the earth. At the top of a mountain, they extended divine protection to the whole valley. In the villages, they stood in a square or at a crossroads.

Many of them, since the Sardinian Restoration, have been erected at the end of a “mission” to recall a high point in spiritual life. After its return in 1815 within the kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia, Savoy was indeed subjected to a severe cult regime to make it repent of the impieties committed during the French Revolution. It was then that processions and missions multiplied, followed by the erection of chapels, oratories and especially crosses. The Croix Saint-Paul, which still stands behind the church and the Croix Saint-Michel, which sits at the top of the Calvaire climb, are both part of the twenty or so crosses still erected in Megève.

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