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The Association
Occitanie Musées is the Association of Curators and Scientific Personnel of the Occitanie Museums. It brings together scientific staff from the Museums of France and cultural and heritage establishments in the Occitanie region. It integrates more than a hundred professionals in all areas of museum activity (management, conservation, mediation, documentation etc.). The Association is the regional arm of the AGCCPF (The national Association of curators and Museum professionals and the public heritage sites of France)
Museum Information

Musée Joseph-Vaylet – musée du scaphandre (Diving Suits)

Espalion | 12

Housed in the former Saint-Jean-Baptiste church (fifteenth – sixteenth century), the Vaylet Museum features the regional arts and craft traditions.
Presented in the style of a “cabinet of curiosities” it recreates a traditional local Rouergat interior (inglenook fireplace, a recessed stone sink and furniture) as well as a rich collection of everyday objects of the time : toys, musical instruments, craftsmen’s tools and wall-mounted fonts.
These collections, assembled by Joseph Vaylet and enriched by members of the association that bears his name, are displayed over two floors in an execeptional gothic setting.

The Diving Suits Museum
This museum brings to life the extraordinary adventure of underwater exploration by tracing the 200 year history of the diving suit.
Here you will learn about the inventions made by two Espalionnais natives, Benoît Rouquayrol and Auguste Denayrouze, who at the end of the nineteenth century developed and patented the first ever modern diving suit in the history of scuba-diving. Jules Verne based the autonomous oxygen regulator used by Nemo in his novel Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea on their invention. The first trials were carried out in the Lot River. More than 400 objects are in display attracting the interest of experts from around the world.

Musée Joseph-Vaylet – musée du scaphandre (Diving Suits) 38 rue Droite
12500 Espalion 05 65 44 09 18

Contact the museum
Video of the Museum
Rates and opening times


  • Full price : €4
  • Reduced price : €2.50
  • Free : under 26 years old, students, disabled persons and their accompanying
  • Free the first Sunday of the month from June to September

Opening times

Open from April to October : 

  • April : Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday (only during school holidays) : 2pm:6pm
  • May and October : Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday  : 2pm:6pm
  • June and September : from Tuesday to Wednesday : 10am:12.30pm and 2pm:6pm. Saturday and Sunday : 2pm:6pm
  • July and August : from Tuesday to Wednesday : 10am:12.30pm and 2pm:6pm.Monday, Saturday and Sunday : 2pm:6pm