Burgundy-Franche-Comté also means Burgundy is a region of France that was created by the national reforms of the areas of France in the year 2014. The new space came into force on 1 January 2016. The region of the Bourgogne-Franche-Comté covers a large mass of land and has a good number of inhabitants. The district has Grand Est to the north, Île-de-France to the northwest, and Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes to the south, Switzerland to the east and Centre-Val de Loire to the west. The main rivers in this place are the tributaries of Doubs and Saone. The Seine river starts in the Côte-d’Or department. On the other hand, the Loire River flows through the southwest of the region.
The Burgundy region consists of 8 départements: the Côte-d’Or (21), the Doubs (25), the Jura (39), the Nièvre (58), the Haute-Saône (70) the Saône-et-Loire (71), the Yonne (89), and the Territoire de Belfort (90).
Burgundy-Franche-Comté receives 1,871.8 sunshine hours a year. The Jura’s peaks are snow-covered an extended part of the year though. Thanks to the humidity but also the presence of sunny hours, this region of France is one of the most verdant; the wet grounds allow the presence of numerous lakes, a real pleasure for the walk lovers who will also enjoy some hiking in the many forests of Franche-Comté. Quite interestingly, the regions of Bourgogne-Franche-Comté usually remain damp throughout the year. The temperature is cold during the winters, and the summers are hot and humid.
The region of Burgundy-Franche-Comté has an excellent collection of Gothic Cathedrals and Romanesque churches. The wine enthusiasts can readily savor the beautiful wines of the area, and they can also tour the vineyards that usually winds through the endless wine routes. One can also take a balloon excursion from a vine to soak in the breathtaking view of this horizon. This region is also known for dessert and yellow wines. It also has plenty of fish as it many rivers flowing through this place. There are several architectural delights too.
The heritage of the Burgundian Soil
In every part of the world, Burgundy will forever be associated with the liquid gold which it nurtures in its soils. But this land of unsurpassed wines has also given birth to other treasures dating back to the mists of time: the Rock of Solutré and the caves of Arcy-sur-Cure take us back to the hunters of the Palaeolithic age.
However, ancient Burgundy is perhaps most intimately connected with the saga of the Celts. The tomb of the princess of Vix, containing a huge bronze vase dating back 2500 years, gives us some idea of the great wealth and the commercial power wielded by the Gaulish chief.
As you travel from Bibracte to Alesia, you may retrace the decisive moments in Julius Caesar’s conquest of Gaul, while many remnants of the Gallo-Roman era are to be admired in Autun and Sens. And should you wish to encompass the history of Burgundy from the earliest times to the drawn of the Middle Ages, you can do no better than visit the “Archéodrome”.
Romanesque Art: Legacy of the Monks
The two greatest monastic reform movements of the Middle Ages both originated in Burgundy. Between the 10th and 12th centuries, first Cluny and then Cîteaux became established not only as spiritual centres but also as intellectual, artistic and even political forces of the first magnitude for the whole of Europe.
This extraordinary flowering gave birth to many magnificent buildings which, from Vézelay to Paray-le-Monial and from Fontenay to La Charité-sur-Loire, may still be admired today. The skills of the Romanesque master-builders are writ large in the Romanesque churches of Burgundy – from the archaic sobriety of Tournus to the dazzling array of sculptures of Autun.
Their special talents are also perpetuated in countless country churches displaying an infinite variety of styles, stonework and atmosphere. We are indebted to the monks, too, for the most illustrous of the Burgundian vineyards, including the fabled Château du Clos de Vougeot.
Mighty Dukes and urban splendour
The Middle Ages were a time of sustained urban growth bequeating to Burgundy a cluster of large and small towns of inestimable beauty.
Pride of place goes to Dijon, first the ducal and now the regional capital, with its entirely protected historical town centre, and to colourful Beaune which combines extraordinary architectural beauty with the noble profession of wine.
But there are also numerous towns gracing the banks of Burgundy’s rivers. Auxonne, Chalon and Mâcon were originally Gallo-Roman ports on the Saône; Digoin, Decize and Nevers perpetuate the memory of the Loire boatmen, while the log floaters of Clamecy, Auxerre, Joigny and Sens once provided Paris with firewood via the river Yonne.
And we should not forget the quiet, secluded streets and age-old charm of the little madiaeval towns of Noyers-sur-Serein, Montréal, Semur-en-Auxois, Flavigny-sur-Ozerain, Châteauneuf-en-Auxois and Brancion.
Castle in Burgundy
The châteaux are the eloquent expression of rural Burgundy and at the same time a reminder of the links – at once close and distant – between the province and royal power under the ancien régime.
You will follow in the footsteps of historical figures such as Vauban (Bazoches), Madame de Sévigné (Bussy-Rabutin, Sully), Lamartine (Cormatin the residences of the Mâconnais) and Colette (Saint-Fargeau in the Puisaye area).
You will also have a chance to enjoy the parks and gardens laid out by the gardeners of the various châteaux and to admire the achievement of the unsung peasant heroes of Burgundy in shaping the rural down the years.
The arts of the table…
table in Burgundy
In Burgundy, everything combines to make the table a warm and welcoming place. Burgundians know how to use their local products to best effect. They are always ready to share a new type of cooking, keeping you company with wit and a genuine love of food as you taste their wines and their cuisine, both of which have a reputation that is second to none. Burgundy’s range of culinary experiences includes ordinary inns on the banks of a river, and prestigious restaurants or farm inns, serving Bresse chicken or Charolais beef, pungent mustard or succulent gingerbread.
No one who spends time in Burgundy can miss visiting the wine cellars. These can be truly theatrical moments with unforgettable scenes played by structured crus and wine producers devoted to their craft.
…the secret of the cellar
Cellars in burgundy
The most famous of Burgundy’s products and its best ambassador is its wine. Throughout the province, from north to south, are prestigious appellations : Chablis, Coteaux de l’Auxerrois, Côte-de-Nuits, Côte-de-Beaune, Hautes Côtes, Côte Chalonnaise and Mâconnais, not forgetting the vineyards of Pouilly sur Loire and Couchois.
280 wine producers, wine traders, small cellars in which you can sample the wine and Wine Centres are all ready to welcome you to their cellars.
To get to know the vineyards of Burgundy, you can follow the Wine Routes, such as the Route des Grands Crus, between Dijon and Beaune, the Route du Mâconnais, the Route de la Pierre et du Vin between Beaune and Cluny, which combines vineyards and sites open to visits and the “Route Touristique des grands Vins de Bourgogne”.
Sports and leisure activities
Let it not be thought that Burgundy is reserved solely for wine connoisseurs and lovers of art and architecture. The visitor has a choice of activities as varied as the region’s landscapes, lakes, canals and rivers. Deep in the heart of Burgugndy lies the Morvan, the perfect destination for walking, sailing and rafting holidays, while the wide open spaces of the Châtillonnais and the gentle slopes of the Bresse are ideal for long-distance cycling expeditions.
Fishing enthusiasts will be drawn to sleepy lakes, rushing trout rivers and streams or to the Saône with its promise of catfish.
Young and old alike will thrill to the prospect of riding excursions among the hedgerows of the Brionnais. Rock climbing, potholing, golf, microlighting, the list of things to do in Burgundy seems almost endless.
Tourism office in Burgundy:
Travel from the UK
By air: Lyon international airport is at 90mn from Burgundy.
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