– from terroirs of world repute to humble local plots and parcels the vineyards of
Burgundy are very accessible and welcoming.
– the impressive 9th.century Romanesque hilltop Benedictine abbey church of Sainte-Marie-Madeleine.
According to legend, not long before the end of the first millennium a monk brought relics (bones)
of Mary Magdalene to Vézelay. Vézelay Abbey was also a major starting point for pilgrims to
Santiago de Compostela, one of the most important of all medieval pilgrimage centres.
This was crucially important in attracting pilgrims and the wealth they brought to the town.
A recommended visit.
—ancient towns and commercial centres are full of interesting buildings and history.
Typical is Chatillon-sur-Seine a delightful town with parks, walks and historical sites.
You can spend a rewarding afternoon in such places.
Abbey of Fontenay
– the region was one of the major centres of Christianity in Europe and has a legacy of churches,
abbeys and priories. Fontenay is a 12th century monastery which was founded by Saint Bernard of
Clairvaux in 1118, located in a small forested valley 60 kilometres northwest of Dijon. It is
one of the oldest and most complete Cistercian abbeys in Europe, and became a UNESCO World
Heritage Site in 1981. Highly recommended—one of the best!
Historical wine villages
- the real charm of Burgundy is in the small old villages, nestling in the middle of the vines,
with stone houses, old churches, restored lavoirs, which have not changed significantly for
generations. Favourites are Monthelie, Volnay, Aloxe-Corton, Clos Vougeot.
- Burgundy has over 1000 kilometres of canals including the Canal of Burgundy (Canal de Bourgogne).
The canal is 242 km long, with 209 canal locks. The canal connects the Atlantic Ocean to the
Mediterranean Sea via the Yonne and Seine to the Saône and Rhône. Barges transport goods along the
river. House boats and canal barges are available for hire.
- Burgundy has more than it’s share of chateaux and typical is Chateau d'Époisses -
This is an ancient fortress surrounded by a double fortification enclosing 15th century houses,
a rare dovecote and a 13th century church. It is also surrounded by a beautiful flower garden.
– the ancient capital of Burgundy, which retains a large part of its original city walls.
The Charity Hospital (Hotel Dieu) founded in 1443 is one of the most visited tourist
attractions in France. Also see the 15th century home of the Dukes of Burgundy, which now
houses the wine museum.