Lying at the junction of the Gavarnie and Barèges valleys, Luz-Saint-Sauveur is central to the economy of the most mountainous, remote district in the Hautes-Pyrénées. Like so many others, Luz owes its reputation as a spa town to Napoleon III and his wife, the empress Eugénie. The spa buildings, typical of the 2nd Empire, overlook the Pau river whose waters are used to treat bone illnesses and rheumatism.
Luz-Saint-Sauveur in the autumn
A little further upstream, Napoleon's bridge is a spectacular feature, its single arch spanning 47 metres and reaching up to 66 metres.
Each skiing season, Luz becomes a bustling village filled with skiers coming to Luz-Ardiden, a resort just 1,000 metres above.