Heritage, what to see?
Hospices de Beaune
Typical example of Burgundy flamboyant gothic style, this former hospital founded in 1443 by chancellor of Duke of burgundy Nicolas Rolin and his wife Guigone de Salins is the testimony of the Flemish influence on the duchy of Burgundy. As far as architecture, it is worldwide famous for its colorful polychromatic glazed tile roofs. The Last Judgment triptych painting by Flemish painter Rogier Van Der Weyden is the highlight of the visit. You will tour the Salle des Pôvres (where the sick ones were looked after), the kitchens, the pharmacy and other rooms exhibiting artifacts and tapestries.
Listed in the UNESCO world heritage, this Cistercian gem in Burgundy owes its amazing good conservation to its very remote location at the bottom of a lush valley. It was founded by Saint Bernard in 1118 and remained very prosperous until the XVI century. It drew most of its wealth from the metal industry and the use of a forge whose hammer worked with the current of the river. The abbey was turned into a paper plant after the French revolution and bought in 1906 by the current family who restored it, showing us the daily life of the monks in the middle ages. You will see perfect examples of Romanesque architecture with the church, dormitory and cloister.
Since the Romans, Dijon has been a crossroad between Northern Europe and Mediterranean regions. It was the capital of the Duchy of Burgundy. In the XIV century, the Dukes of Burgundy settled there one of the most brilliant courts in Europe, leading to, during the Renaissance, the creation of fine town houses and palaces.
The abbey of Tournus was founded near the tomb of martyr Saint Valerian in the II century. The current abbey, founded around 1000, is an amazing example of Romanesque architecture. Striking is the austerity of its architecture and the lack of ornamentation. Also open to the visit are the cloister, the refectory, the cellar and the chapter room.
Very picturesque village on hillsides, Vezelay and its basilica (listed in the UNESCO world heritage) have always attracted thousands of pilgrims. From this place, Bernard de Clairvaux launched the second crusades. The Romanesque basilica, with its impressive and monumental doorway, houses the relics of Saint Magdalena. Vezelay has been a stage on the way to Santiago de Compostela.