top of page

The perfect weekend in Burgundy

Updated: Jan 24

Discover the ultimate romantic weekend in Burgundy with a charming bike tour through picturesque vineyards, historic sites, and hidden gems. Here are my insider tips

The perfect weekend in Burgundy 1. Day - Friday: off to Dijon!

Welcome to Burgundy. We are not starting our long weekend with mustard sour faces,

but in the capital of Burgundy: Dijon!

Besides being the starting point of the "Route de Grands Crus", the city also has the status of a UNESCO World Heritage Site for French food culture.

Click on the first picture to start the photo gallery:

So into the hustle and bustle - small alleys, secluded and grand squares - everything you could wish for in a French city. Alongside numerous cafés and restaurants, of course.

The famous owl from Dijon

How about a romantic walk along the beautiful facades of the former capital of the Dukes of Burgundy? To make sure you don't miss a single sight, you can take the "Parcours de la Chouette" tour, an APP that you can download in advance. There are 22 stages on the programme, including the lucky charm of all city dwellers: the little owl at Notre-Dame Cathedral, which gave the tour its name. Supposedly, wishes come true when you touch it.

Love goes through the stomach

Whether you prefer a romantic dinner in a gourmet restaurant or a cosy wine bar - in Dijon, all tastes are catered for.

Loiseau des Ducs: This Michelin-starred restaurant is a must in the race for the best places for gourmets in the old town, as its terrace is right opposite the Palais des Ducs. Regional specialities such as air-dried hams from the Morvan are served here.

If you don't want to dig quite so deep into your wallet but still want to enjoy regional products, the young team at La Fine Heure restaurant is the place to be.

Sleep Dijon:

Hip: Newly renovated, chic and charming, the Vertigo Hotel in Dijon is located in the heart of the city, overlooking Place Darcy and the pedestrian zone. With swimming pool and SPA. Double room from € 130,

Little Red Riding Hood's place to stay is called Hostellerie du Chapeau Rouge:

The "Gasthaus zum Roten Hut" is an institution. Glassed-in conservatory, colourful rooms from cozy to styled. , double room from 144 €

The perfect weekend in Burgundy 2. Day - Saturday = market day

the famous market hall von Dijon

The highlight is the market, which takes place on Saturdays from 8 am - 1 pm. The market hall, by the way, was built by none other than Gustave Eiffel and also impresses with its elegant steel construction. Even those who have had their fill of breakfast are guaranteed to be tempted again here ...

Dijon from above

The best view can be enjoyed from the 46-metre-high Tour Philippe le Bon - you have to climb 316 steps to get there and are rewarded with a fantastic view all the way to the Musée des Beaux-Arts.

Surprise: a visit to the Musée Beaux-Arts, which reopened in 2019, does not cost an entrance fee, even though the renovation took ten years, €60 million were spent and only the inauguration ceremony cost €1.5 million. It is one of the three most important art museums in France outside Paris. Works of art from all periods are on display. The most famous room of the museum houses the tombs of the Dukes of Burgundy with their impressive sequence of mourning persons, the "pleurants".

Saturday 5pm

A balade gourmande is something like a guided tour of the best local produce.

Cost €12, including some tastings (spiced bread, mustard, crème de cassis), book online.

Restaurants in Beaune

Saturday evening: Off to Beaune

The city that is considered the hub of the wine trade is only a stone's throw away. The Dukes of Burgundy already enjoyed themselves here and today the town is the tourist magnet on the Côte d'Or.

In summer, high-priced convertibles cruise along the cobblestones, which are, however, increasingly closed to traffic. It's buzzing here all year round, and Beaune does a lot for its looks. Behind the city walls, a perfectly restored old town welcomes you.

Sleep in Beaune:

Le Jardin Secret De Beaune is indeed something of a secret retreat. The three flats are located directly in the city centre, but in a green garden. From €80.

The perfect weekend in Burgundy 3. Day - Sunday - It pays to get up early
Hospices de Beaune

The centre of the city is without doubt the late medieval Hospices de Beaune, also called Hôtel-Dieu - a former hospital founded in the 15th century by Nicolas Rolin, chancellor of the Duke of Burgundy, and his wife Guigone de Salins. Just looking into the cobbled courtyard of the High Gothic hospice for the sick and poor takes your breath away.

Stone columns support the half-timbered gallery of the first floor and the roof covered in a colourful diamond pattern. The ensemble in the Burgundian-Flemish style was built in 1443. Inside, the Salle des Pôvres, used as an infirmary until the 1970s, is astonishing., mid-March-mid-Nov. daily 9am-6.30pm, (last admission 1 hour before closing), €7.50.

Get on your bike

La Voie des Vignes is a 22km dream bike tour through the famous vineyards with illustrious names like Beaune, Pommard, Volnay, or Meursault. The hearts of Burgundy wine lovers should already be beating faster! No cyclist is guaranteed to go thirsty (or hungry) on a ride through the picturesque winegrowing villages.

Bicycles can be rented for €20 per day from Active Tours, for example.

Click on the first picture to start the photo gallery:

Afternoon: Time for a country outing

The drive from Beaune to Vézeley takes just under 1 hour. Enough time to rest your tired bones after the bike ride.

Situated on top of the "Eternal Hill", the basilica can be seen from afar. The picturesque village is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most beautiful villages in France.

My tip:

It's best to visit Vézeley early in the morning or in the evening before the rush of visitors. I found the square behind the basilica particularly pretty, from where you have a magnificent view over the surrounding countryside.

Preferably check into a hotel directly and then relax with a wine tasting in one of the old, picturesque wineries. (Ex:, or

If you don't like wine, you can also taste home-brewed beer at the Brasserie de Vézelay.

The restaurant SY La Terrasse stands out for its location directly on the market square at the foot of the basilica.

Time seems to have stood still in Vézeley

Sleep Vézeley:

My super secret tip is the Manoir de Val en Sel.

Half an hour's walk from Vézelay, the old manor house is surrounded by extensive gardens. The owner Dominique Armengaud is an enthusiastic gardener and even if she doesn't have a room available at the moment, she is happy to show visitors her garden. Be sure to book in advance. Double room with breakfast from 105 €.

The Hotel Hôtel Les Glycines is located directly on the main road (without traffic) leading to the basilica. The wisteria-covered old mansion offers stylish rooms. Double room from €85 plus €15 for breakfast per person.

The perfect weekend in Burgundy 5. Day - Monday History galore!

Vézeley was the Instagram hotspot of the 12th/13th century, so to speak.

Everyone of distinction, such as Richard the Lionheart or Francis of Assisi, made pilgrimages to the holy hill, whose basilica Ste Madeleine (open daily from 7am-8pm outside Mass times) houses the bones of the eponymous saint.

The village has more than a thousand years of history and has a very special atmosphere. Princes, kings, emperors, commoners and thousands of pilgrims have come here since the 12th century to venerate the relics of the saints before setting off on the Camino de Santiago or the Crusades.

In addition, history was made here in 1146: "God wants it" cried St Bernard, triggering the 2nd Crusade.

The Bourgogne-Franche-Comté region is bursting with history and tradition - there are eight UNESCO sites here. After the climatic zones of the Burgundy wine region, the Basilica of Vézeley, today's programme includes the Cistercian Abbey of Fontenay, which is the best-preserved Cistercian abbey in Burgundy. It was founded in 1118 by St Bernard.

Perhaps one reason for its good preservation is its secluded location - then as now. Since it was built, the church and cloister have hardly been altered. The 56m-long dormitory of the monks is particularly impressive. A huge dormitory, so to speak, without privacy or heating. For this, the monks only had to stumble down a few steps into the church for matins. The garden resembles an English park with watercourses, fish ponds and a green lawn that no greenkeeper in the world would find fault with., opening hours in summer 10am-6pm.

General info:

  • Instagram Social Icon
  • YouTube Social  Icon
  • Facebook Social Icon
bottom of page