Destination Inspiration: Dijon, France

Destination Inspiration: Dijon, France

Just over a three-hour drive from Paris, Dijon makes for the perfect weekend getaway. Visit for its cobbled squares, Haussman-style architecture and bountiful vineyards.


Dijon, France

Why now?

Known as “the car-free medieval city”, Burgundy’s capital is often overlooked as visitors
flock instead to Provence’s rolling lavender fields or
Marseille’s balmy beaches. But Dijon has much to offer the
Francophile. Home to the Dukes of Burgundy – deemed more powerful
than royalty until the 15th century – this place is rich in
architectural, culinary and cultural delights alike.

Hungry? Follow your nose to Les Halles indoor food market, where
you can browse the region’s many culinary specialities – not
missing, of course, a taste of the world-famous mustard. After
that, we recommend you follow the “Owl Trail”. Follow signs from
the city-centre start point: the tour route winds its way through
narrow alleyways and sprawling squares, taking in 22 of Dijon’s
most legendary landmarks.

One of our favourite things to do when discovering a new
destination is to take a stroll through the surrounding
countryside. Just an hour’s drive west of the city, Morvan Regional
National Park, with its crystal-clear lakes, woodlands and meadows,
is a great place to start.

Don’t miss

Delve deep into Dijon’s history at the Musée des Beaux-Arts
de Dijon
. Opened in 1787, the museum’s walls are clad with
early-Renaissance sculptures, while regular exhibitions are always

Where to stay?

Bed down at Vertigo Hotel, brainchild of the brilliant
Massucco brothers. Housed in a 1920s-built, Haussmann-style
building, this is a place where French tradition meets contemporary
style, and whose abstract artworks and padded headboards get our
seal of approval. Be sure to check out the hotel spa, resplendent
in black matte tiles, with marble poolside loungers.

Where to go for dinner?

Book a table at Hôtel La Cloche’s restaurant Les Jardins, whose outdoor dining space is almost as
delightful as its menu. Picture puff pastry fingers and expertly
cooked rabbit. More of the brunch type? Spend a lazy Sunday morning
here, lingering over fluffy waffles and flaky pain au chocolate.
Hooked? Check out head chef Aurélien Manu’s cookbook, Saisons.

And for a drink…

Evenings are best spent with a cocktail (or three) at the
Blues Café, enjoying a spot of live jazz by a line-up
of established and upcoming artists.

Who to take with you

Take someone who’s prone to a glass of red, so that you can
taste-test the fantastic local bins together.

When to go

September to mid-October is when Dijon seriously sparkles. The
climate is just right, and it’s also harvest time for the
vineyards, with plenty of events going on across the city to mark
the occasion. We recommend taking the 20-minute drive to La
Maison’s Domaine de la Vougeraie winery to sample some
top-notch local vintages.

Essentials to pack

An extra-large bag in which you can stuff some of Dijon’s best
bits to take home. Our favourite is this bright Raf Simons logo-patch zipped canvas tote.

How to get there

Prefer the scenic route? Take the train from London Kings Cross
to Dijon via Paris Gare du Nord. Alternatively, fly to Dijon Air
Base, from where it’s 14km to the city centre.

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