Galleria di Napoleone

The tunnel opens onto a small green area and is clearly visible along the path that branches off from the municipal road.

Period XVII

Accessibility No

Visitable Yes

Before starting work on the current Tunnel, several construction sites tried to drill the mountain to allow easier transit between the Vermenagna and Roya valleys.

The first round of work dates back to 1614 on the impulse of the Duke of Savoy, Charles Emmanuel I and was interrupted after 40 metres of progress due to the inadequacy of the available technical means and the lack of funds. In 1780 the government of Victor Amadeus III of Sardinia promoted a new work campaign that after about 10 years of work was abandoned. Under the Napoleonic rule, in 1802, a third attempt at the tunnel was also abandoned due to technical and economic difficulties.

The tunnel stops after a hundred meters; by observing the colour and appearance of the debris inside, it is possible to identify the three rounds of work that between the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries saw the attempt to open the first tunnel connecting Italy and France.

Conditions of visit

The site (at an altitude of 1750m) can be reached after a few minutes along the road that branches off from the 5th bend of the municipal road that goes up to Colle di Tenda on the Italian side.
Access by dirt track with parking nearby.


Additional information


  • AA.VV, I forti del Colle di Tenda : 12 escursioni alla scoperta dei forti sabaudi, ieri strumenti di difesa, oggi un modo per godersi stupendi panorami , Tipolitoeuropa, p.4

Useful links