Looking for a long weekend away? How about the rolling green hills of the Morvan? This beautiful corner of nature is protected by it’s a Natural Park status, offering the perfect place for a short trip.
9 AM- A Pretty City
In the morning take a walk in the medieval streets of Avallon. This pretty city was recently labelled one of the “Plus beaux Détours de France” – the most beautiful visits in France, and is full of charm with its ramparts, turrets, timber houses, collegiate church and marketplace (Thursday and Saturday mornings.)
Visit the pearl of Morvan: Vézelay village. Its famous basilica and “eternal hill” are listed as Unesco World Heritage sites. The further you climb up the hill, the more you will be touched by the grace of this little village. At the top you will find the basilica which offers 180 ° panoramic views of the Morvan.
2.30 PM- Château Life
After lunch, treat yourself to an afternoon exploring a chateau full of history; Bazoches, the home of Marshal Vauban, the French genius behind the nations fortifications under Louis XIV. This chateau is perfectly preserved and offers an intimate look at the life of Vauban. Within this very castle Vauban wrote many of his most important methods on attack and defense during war.
4 PM- Refreshing Waterfalls
After immersing yourself in culture, it is time to indulge in nature. What better than a beautiful waterfall 10m high to enjoy the healing benefits of Mother Nature? Visit the Saut du Gouloux and enjoy the cool waterfall, the smell of fresh undergrowth and the music of birdsong. Here you can take a 1.8 km walking trail to discover and learn about the local flora and fauna.
6 PM- Where to sleep
If you enjoy the wilderness then the Hobbit House at the Domaine de la Pierre Ronde will be a guaranteed success for you and your gang. With a green grass roof, a round door a wooden an stone interior, there is no doubt this accommodation would impress even Tolkien himself.
9 AM- Gastronomy and Sculpture
Cap sur Saulieu is renowned for the excellence of its gastronomy. Here, chefs Alexandre Dumaine and the famous Bernard loiseau have brought many Michelin stars to the city. After a hop to the market, stroll through the city and take the time to enjoy a glass of wine. During your walk you are sure to come across a bull or even a bear. But fear not, these are the perfectly harmless creations of François Pompon, the renowned animal sculptor who gives his name to the local museum.
11 AM- Museum and Local Tradition
Behind the Morvan is the fascinating history of motherhood and nourishment. During the Nineteenth century thousands of Morvandelle women were sent to Paris to earn a living breastfeeding the privileged children of the upper middle class. At the same time, until the 1960s, the region welcomed tens of thousands of orphans to be cared for in the countryside. This moving story is told in the museum of Alligny-en-Morvan.
12 PM- Sparkling Lake
In the Morvan, the land is bountiful and the water pure and clear. Need convincing? Head for Settons Lake which has been awarded the Blue Flag, guaranteeing the fine quality of the water for bathing. Those who don’t like swimming can try their hand at sailing with a catamaran or a pedalo!
7 PM- Where to sleep
Before heading to your hotel we recommend watching the sunset over the calm, mirror finish of the lake. Nearby is the Hotel Grillons du Morvan, a simple and cosy establishment with large fireplaces, relaxing park and comfortable rooms. After such a day in the fresh air you are sure to nod off right away.
9 AM- Travel back in time
Take a trip back to the past with a visit to Bibracte. Far from the clichés of Asterix, this archeological site with a museum of Celtic civilization provides a better understanding of the daily life and activities of the Eduen people who lived over 2000 years ago. For total immersion, have lunch like your Gallic ancestors in the Cauldron of Bibracte, complete with goblets of beer, wooden spoons and dishes of Gallic inspiration. It had to be seen to be believed!
2 PM – Pebbles
Ascend the 700m summit of the Signal d’Uchon. Its not too much of an effort, but its certainly worth the climb when you see the view from the top! The landscape is dotted with mighty blocks of granite and is perfect for amateur hikers.
4 PM- An Ancient City
Take the path to Autun. The ancient Augustodunum has preserved many vestiges of its Roman past: the enigmatic temple of Janus, the Roman theatre which was the largest in the world at the time and now hosts a summer light and sound show. Next visit the beautiful cathedral of St Lazare.