The Opinel Road
The Opinel Tour takes the name from the itinerary linking the Opinel Museum in Saint Jean de Maurienne to the Opinel Place in the heart of the Albiez-Montrond village.
The itinerary follows the valley of the Arvan river which is directly linked to the history of the Opinel knife. Throughout the 20km route, several stages enable you to discover the Opinel monuments and ruins.
The first monument you will encounter, on the road to the Mollard Pass, is the Opinel roundabout, a 3.83m high knife undertaken by Jean-Claude Opinel in 2002.
Take the road signposted to Albiez-le-Vieux and after a few hundred metres you come to the Combe outdoor activities area where you will find the world’s largest Opinel. Reaching a height of 4.8m and weighing over a ton, this giant Opinel made of stainless steel and concrete takes centre stage of the skatepark and is used for jumps by the skaters.
Continuing a further 6km along the valley, in the first bend after the Gevoudaz bridge, you will discover the old factory belonging to Joseph Opinel. Here in this building which is currently being restored, the Opinel knives were made between the years 1901 and 1915. From this site you will be able to take a footpath to the ruins of the first Opinel workshop which dates back to 1830.
After returning to your car, you need to climb the bending road for 10km until you reach the Albiez-le-Vieux plateau. Here you arrive at the Place Opinel with it’s giant aluminium monument unveiled in 2011 in honour of the Opinel family, natives of the village.