What to do in Dijon

You will enjoy discovering Burgundy’s capital! Dijon, a dynamic city rewarded with the official label “City of Art and History”, and ranked third most important city of art in France, offers exceptional architectural heritage, rich culture and of course its world renowned gastronomy and wines.

Dijon is ranked high in terms of quality of life and much appreciated by the students who make up no less than 10% of its inhabitants. In the following we highlight just a few of the many attractions:

▪ The palace of the Dukes of Burgundy

▪ The many churches, jewels of medieval architecture (Notre-Dame and its Jacquemart carillon, Saint Michel with its renaissance front, Saint Bénigne cathedral with its glazed roof tiles and its 10th century crypt)

The museums (archeological museum, museum of fine arts, Magnin museum, museum of sacred art, museum of Burgundian life, …)

The parks (Arquebuse botanical garden, Darcy park)
▪ The picturesque quarter of the Antiquaries, a fine ensemble of half-timbered houses
▪ The market hall with its Art Nouveau cast iron structure, filled with lively and colourful food stalls
▪ The elegant 17th and 18th century hôtels particuliers, built by rich aristocrats, which you may stumble upon at the corner of some street
▪ An attractive offer of cultural events from opera and theatre to concerts of classical or contemporary music
▪ Also check out the lessons on French cooking and on wine tasting in general and discovery of the Burgundy wines in particular


What to discover out of town

Visit the wineyards of the Côte d’Or stretching from Dijon towards the south, where the world
famous Burgundy wines are grown. Discover the Clos Vougeot wineyard and castle, where
Cistercian monks from nearby Cîteaux abbey found out already in the 12th century that this is the right place for growing excellent wine. Don’t miss a stop in the numerous wine cellars in charming villages nestled in the wineyards, such as Gevrey-Chambertin, Vosne-Romanée, Volnay, Pommard, Meursault, …

▪ While you are moving down the Côte d’Or wineyards, don’t drive by Beaune without at least spending half a day in this beautiful and lively town with its 15th century Hôtel-Dieu

▪ Make a day’s excursion to the rolling hills of the Auxois region dotted with jewels such as the medieval borough of Châteauneuf en Auxois and its fortified castle, or Commarin castle displaying 17th century art of living

▪ Toward the north and east, Bèze and its natural grottoes, Châtillon sur Seine and its museum with important gallo-roman findings such as the gigantic bronze Vase de Vix, and the nice town of Dole, birthplace of Louis Pasteur, are waiting for you

For those planning a whole day out in the countryside, many highlights are waiting

• The pure 12th century marvel of the Cistercian abbey of Fontenay, the nearby authentic Renaissance village of Flavigny sur Ozerain and the Bussy-Rabutin 17th century folly
• The famous Romanesque basilica of Vézelay
• The city of Autun and its important heritage from Roman and medieval periods
Tournus and its minster, one of the largest Romanesque buildings in France

These suggestions are in no way a complete list. Indeed, Burgundy’s history is very rich and there are numerous castles and historic sites to discover.



Dijon’s Antiques fair, one of the most important in France.
• The antiquaries’ bric-a-brac sale, held every third sunday of the month throughout the year
• The great September sale
• The gastronomy fair, every year from 1st to 11th November
• On various week-ends in summer, car races on the Dijon-Prenois circuit
• The “Heritage Day” on the third week-end of September, where historic properties open to the public that usually are not accessible for visitors
• The famous wine auction in the Hospices de Beaune on the third week-end of November
… and lots of other festivities and events all around the year

Should you be interested in prolonging your stay in the countryside around Beaune, then we can recommend the gite “Les Tilleuls” in Evelle which we find especially enjoyable: www.gite-les-tilleuls.fr