Beaune, France

Beaune is a town in the heart of Borgongne (Burgundy) about a 20-minute train ride southwest of our homebase of Dijon. It is a town that honors the region’s centuries of wine making.

What also sets it apart are the walls that surround it—ramparts that were built, reinforced, and added on to between the 12th to 17th centuries.

We had the pleasure of visitng Beaune on a sparkling day in mid-May when the town’s outdoor market was in full force. This gave us the opportunity to visit the town’s cathedral Collégiale Notre Dame, as well as the UNESCO world heritage site of the Hospice de Beaune.

 

The Town

On any given Saturday in spring and summer in Beaune, beautiful buildings suround a lively outdoor market with a wide variety of items for sale, from lace tablecloths to cheese to rotisserie chicken.

IMG_3656
The Saturday outdoor market of Beaune (You can see the steeple on top of the Hospice de Beaune in the background.)
IMG_3661
A typical building in Beaune.

 

Collégiale Notre Dame

While in France, we have had the opportunity to visit several towns and villages in Burgundy, and every one has had a church or cathedral. Beaune was no exception.

The Collégiale Notre Dame de Beaune is a beautiful 13th century chuch with Romanesque architecture. Inside are gorgeous windows of stained glass, as well as murals and  tapestries dating back to the Renssaisance.

IMG_3663.jpg

IMG_3665

IMG_3670

IMG_3671

IMG_3673

 

Hospices de Beaune (Hôtel-Dieu)

The centerpiece of Beaune is the UNESCO world heritage site of the Hospice de Beaune or “Hôtel-Dieu.” Fouded by Nicholas Ronin in the 15th century, the hospice served the sick, regardess of social status or the ability to pay. An audio tour helped us to understand the purposes of different areas of the buildings, including the kitchens and the “Room of the Poor” lined with beds for those needing care. Under Ronin’s leadership, the hospice was more than just functional; today, a visitor can still appreciate its great architectural beauty and colorful ceramic roof tiles. In addition, it houses beautiful peices of art like the polyptych (painted altar piece on three panels) of The Last Judgement by Rogier Van der Weyden (second photograph below).

IMG_3680

IMG_2014.jpg

IMG_3683

IMG_3685

IMG_3688

IMG_3689

IMG_3692

IMG_3697.jpg

 

Cote de Beaune (in Burgundy)

The Côte de Beaune is one of the great wine-growing regions of Burgundy. During our time in Dijon and the surrounding area, we have had the privelege of learning about the wine of Borgogne, including information about the types of grapes that are grown here and how wine is made (more about the wine of Borgogne in a future post). Suffice it to say, after understanding how special this region truly is, I could not leave Beaune without stopping in to a store for a wine tasting and a bottle of Pinot Noir.

IMG_3709.jpg

2 thoughts on “Beaune, France

  1. Lovely. I don’t know if you’ll have time, and it’s closer to Paris than Dijon, but if you do, I might recommend Chartres Cathedral as a spot to visit. It is a fantastic cathedral, well preserved & has meant quite a bit to me since I had the opportunity to visit it in 1991. We were lucky enough to be on a tour by Malcolm Miller, who was able to explain some very fascinating statuary and provide context for the Gothic cathedral.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I just looked up Chartres Cathedral . . . it looks amazing. Unfortunately, we will have just a short time in Paris this week before heading to our next destination. (Our time here has gone by incredibly fast.) I now definitely have an appreciation for Gothic cathedrals, though . . . and an affinity for France–so maybe we will see it someday. 🙂

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s