Beaune is in the middle of the Burgundy wine-making region, where many Grand Cru wines are produced, mainly from Pinot noir and Chardonnay grapes. We set our mind on spending holidays in Burgundy after reading reviews highlighting its beautiful countryside with green hills, its medieval villages and its 1000 km of signposted cycling trails.
I really enjoyed visiting Beaune & the surrounding area! It is a pretty city enclosed within 2 km of ramparts that were built between the 12th and 15th centuries.
My personal highlights involved:
Beaune’s charming architecture & coloured rooftops
It was lovely walking all over the city to see its nice buildings: elaborate Renaissance facades stand alongside Romanesque churches and timber-framed houses from the Middle Ages. During summer, it’s worth going for a little walk after sunset, to enjoy the light show projected on some of Beaune’s buildings.
In Beaune and its surrounding area you can spot some beautiful colourful roofs made of glazed flat tiles in nice patterns. I loved them!
Cycling along “La Voie des Vignes” (vineyard route)
There are some well signposted cycling paths leading to the North, South and West of Beaune. I thoroughly enjoyed riding along “La Voie des Vignes” from Beaune to Nolay, via Meursault: a narrow path and minor roads run along the slopes of the extensive vineyards and through picturesque villages. From Santenay there are also some nice trips to the Canal du Centre, on the green way along the towpath.
95% of the people we encountered around Beaune were very friendly, helpful and hospitable: it was really nice being greeted by a smile and a “bonjour” by most people we came across during our bike trips. This may seem random but it made a real difference!
Colourful flowers everywhere
I love how many cities, towns and villages in France take part in the “Ville Fleurie” competition, which encourages them to implement policies to improve the quality of life and to enhance their attractiveness via green spaces. It was lovely seeing so many flowery buildings around Beaune!
What about the ice cream?!
Regular readers of my blog know that I like to find nice ice cream in the places I visit! I was hoping to find some wine sorbet or at least some pomace-based sorbet/ice cream! If you go to Beaune, you might want to try one of the following places:
1. Passion Millot – Pâtissier, Chocolatier & Glacier –
I only spotted this shop on our last day in Beaune: we unfortunately ended up having to gobble it rather quickly. The lady who served us explained that they make the ice cream themselves, from seasonal ingredients. The ice cream was very good! It was my first time to see basil ice cream that was not combined with another fruit. It was pleasantly intense!
2. Le Jardin des Remparts, 1* restaurant – 10 Rue de l’Hôtel Dieu, F-21200 Beaune
We were recommended to have lunch in this 1* restaurant: I had to brave my way through my starter of snails, before getting food that I was more comfortable with! 😉
Dessert was a highlight! & the little scoop of gingerbread ice cream was REALLY good!
3. o’ glaces beaunoises –
The ice cream and sorbet they sell is made by Glaces des Alpes which describes itself as an “artisanal ice cream producer”. Glaces des Alpes mentions some interesting flavours on their website which I would have LOVED to try: for e.g. green asparagus-wasabi, gruyère-double cream, poppy, mustard ice cream made with Dijon mustard, or tomato-basil sorbet…!! 🙂 I’m pretty sure I read about an ice cream flavour with grape pomace on their website, but none of these flavours were on offer at o’glaces beaunoises!
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