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Bourges Travel Guide

City Map

City Introduction

Bourges is a city in central France on the river Yèvre. Its history goes back to the Celtic city of Avaricum, which was one of the largest cities in Gaul at the time with up to 40,000 inhabitants. In 52 BC the Battle of Avaricum took place, and the Roman general Gaius Julius Caesar captured the city at that time. The Romans called the city Biturigae and it became the central place of the province of Aquitania.

From the 5th century and several centuries onwards, there was changing dominion over the city, and it almost burned down in 583. Bourges was rebuilt under the Carolingians, and in the 12th century the city became part of what was then France. Bourges was also an important ecclesiastical city, with congregations in 1031, 1225, 1276, 1286, 1336 and 1438. In 1464, the city’s university was founded, and a few centuries later the city walls were demolished, making way for new developments.

Today you can enjoy some lovely walks in the cozy streets of Bourges, where the buildings are low with several lovely squares such as Place Gordaine. Here you can see some preserved of the characteristic half-timbered houses that once characterized the cityscape. You can walk through the center to the Palais Jacques Coeur, which is a so-called hôtel particular or a magnificent town house. Palais Jacques Coeur was built in the 15th century in an almost castle-like style, and it is a fine example of French civil architecture of its time. Close to this is the Musée du Berry in the Hôtel Cujas building from the beginning of the 16th century. In the museum, you can see collections of art and archeology.

The most famous sight in Bourges, however, is the city’s great cathedral, which is on UNESCO’s list of world heritage sites. The cathedral is the seat of the Archbishop of Bourges and was mainly built from 1195 to 1230 in High Gothic architecture. Consecrated in 1324, the cathedral is particularly noted for its impressive size and the sculptural decoration of the portals. You can also see some beautiful stained-glass windows from the 13th century in the church. Next to the cathedral, you can take a walk in the Jardin de l’Archevêché, which is the diocese’s beautiful garden, and it is located behind the archbishop’s residence palace.

Other Attractions


In short

Overview of Chartres

The Cathedral is the city’s greatest attraction. The cathedral is considered one of the finest Gothic structures in France, and it is included in UNESCO’s list of world heritage sites. The impressive building was built largely from 1194 to its dedication in 1260, and it was the first building to use buttresses in the construction. The cathedral was never expanded or rebuilt to a significant extent, apart from the northern tower spire, which was built in the early 16th century. Therefore, Chartres’ cathedral also stands as a particularly well-preserved monument from the era of the Gothic cathedrals, and you can e.g. see the many original stained-glass windows that, like the cathedral, date from the 13th century. The mosaics contain the so-called Chartres blue, and they depict Bible history.

About the Chartres travel guide

Contents: Tours in the city + tours in the surrounding area
Published: Released soon
Author: Stig Albeck
Language: English

About the travel guide

The Chartres travel guide gives you an overview of the sights and activities of the French city. Read about top sights and other sights, and get a tour guide with tour suggestions and detailed descriptions of all the city’s most important churches, monuments, mansions, museums, etc.

Chartres is waiting for you, and at you can also find cheap flights and great deals on hotels for your trip. You just select your travel dates and then you get flight and accommodation suggestions in and around the city.

Read more about Chartres and France

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When you buy the travel guide to Chartres you get the book online so you can have it on your phone, tablet or computer – and of course you can choose to print it. Use the maps and tour suggestions and you will have a good and content-rich journey.



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