Travelling in and around Burgundy

Following the Dukes's footsteps along little lanes, on foot and by bike !

Let's go!

Burgundyis simply studded with medieval castles, private homes and picturesque vestiges of former fortifications, and Gothic churches. They make for colourful stopovers along the small routes winding their way through the region, offering magical views and unexpected glimpses in different landscapes. Here are few suggested itineraries with a very brief description of their highlights. Most have been designed for camping-car or motorbike rides, but they may all serve as a source of inspiration for other motorised rides. It is also possible to do them on bicycles, although there are not necessarily any bike lanes and there may be some stiff uphill slopes.. Across the region, short hiking routes developed by the French Hiking Federation (FFRP) allow you to discover, along the way, the heritage from the time of the Dukes of Burgundy, and, in particular, many castles.

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Along little lanes

270 km, 6 days, Sens, Villeneuve-sur-Yonne, Joigny (fortified city : churches Saint-André and Saint-Thibault), Auxerre, Noyers-sur-Serein, Tonnerre.
230 km, 5 days, Vézelay, Saint-Père, Bazoches, the Thil hill, Semur-en-Auxois, Flavigny-sur-Ozerain, Montbard (11 km to the nord-west, Rougemont with vestiges of its tower, church and medieval houses ; 4 km to the south, Montfort castle in Montigny-Montfort), Montréal, Avallon.
235 km, 6 day, Dijon, Beaune, La Rochepot (5 km to the east : the wine-growing village of Gamay, near Saint-Aubin, with a fort overlooking it), Nolay, Couches, Autun, Châteauneuf-en-Auxois, Commarin (a medieval stronghold which has been turned into a residential château open to visitors. Nearby: Antigny, castle, near Foissy and Chaudenay), Mâlain (vestiges of a castle on the hill above the village, guided tours in summer).
250 km, 7 jours, Pierreclos, Berzé-le-Châtel, Cluny, Brancion, Tournus, Chalon-sur-Saône, Buxy former fortified city of which some towers still remain), Sercy (13th-15th C. castle, one of the most beautifully preserved in the region), Saint-Gengoux-le-National, Semur-en-Brionnais, La Clayette (14th-19th C.castle, where troops used to keep watch over the border between territory belonging to the duke of Burgundy and that of the count of Mâcon), Changy (Montessus tower, 14th C.,overlooking the road to the Charolais southern border) and Charolles.
294 km, Chalon-sur-Saône, Saint-Gengoux-le-National, Tournus, Brancion, Cluny, La Rochepot, Nolay, Saint-Romain (vestiges of the duke's castle, blazed trail).
230 km, d'Auxerre à Noyers-sur-Serein par Lichères (château of Faulin with its Flamboyant main building), Clamecy, Vézelay, Saint-Père, Bazoches et Avallon.
the road descending from the Puisaye region to La Charité-sur-Loire and through Entrains-sur- Nohain passes by the impressive, well-preserved stronghold of La Motte-Josserand north of Donzy and Passy-les-Tours castle (near Varennes-les-Narcy), while south of Nevers, small roads link the Allier valley to that of the Loire for a circuit that passes Chevenon castle, Villars castle (near Saint-Parize-le- Châtel) and Rosemont castle (near Luthenay-Uxeloup), with the possibility of a slight detour to Meauce (near Saincaize- Meauce). Most of the castles in this busy zone along the waterways have a vibrant and fascinating history, with special reference to the Hundred Years' War.

On foot, by bike or boat

Three circuits lead to the discovery of ancient strongholds of some of the most important feudal dynasties and offer stunning views of the region that was at the heart of ducal power:

AROUND THE HILLOCK OF VERGY 

13 km, 4h20, average difficulty, Côte-d'Or topographical guide n°5)


THE WALK AROUND MONT-SAINT-JEAN 

(13 km, 4h20, average difficulty, Côte-d'Or topographical guide n°13)


THE HILLOCKS OF THIL

(16 km, 6h40, difficult Côte-d'Or topographical guide n°19)


Not far from Beaune :

THE SENTIER DES ROCHES 

515 km, 5h, average difficulty, Côte-d'Or topographical guide, n° 10) makes it possible to discover the Château of La Rochepot.


THE SENTIER JEAN-MARC BOIVIN 

(28 + 21 km, 9h20 + 7h, provides a return trip in two days (28 + 21 km, 9h20 + 7h00, difficult, Côte-d'Or topographical guide, n° 24) around Nolay and La Rochepot, passing through Baubigny, where the abandoned medieval village of Dracy is highlighted by recent signage.


THE TOUR DE LA BUTTE DE CORTON

(6 km, 2h, meanwhile, runs along the “climat” of the Corton Clos du Roi which was one of the main ducal vineyards (6 km, 2h00, very easy, Côte d'Or topographical guide, n° 9

THE AROUND TERNANT

(circuit can be combined with a visit to the extraordinary triptych in the church of the village in Nivernais (11 km, 3h00, average difficulty, Nièvre topographical guide, n° 39).


That of the CHÂTEAUX D'ARTHEL 

offers a pleasant stroll around two castles, one of which has retained its medieval character (2.5 km, 1h00, easy, Burgundy topographical guide n° 6).

THE CHEMIN DES BUIS 

(3.5 km, 1h10, very easy, Saône-et-Loire topographical guide, n°29) makes it possible to explore the area around the medieval town of Saint-Gengoux-le-National.


THE CIRCUIT DES CRÊTES DE MARTAILLY-LES-BRANCION 

(circuit passes by the fortress of Brancion (5 km, 1h40, very easy, Saône-et-Loire topographical guide, n° 28). 


THE WALK IN CHAROLAIS

(Stars from the city of Charolles (9.5 km, 3h00, easy, Saône-et-Loire topographical guide, n° 23),


THE BOCAGE BRIONNAIS

walk takes place around the village of Oye and its castles (20 km, 5h30, difficult, Saône-et-Loire topographical guide, n° 26).

In Puisaye, THE SENTIER DES POTIERS

(10.5 km, 3h00, average, Yonne topographical guide, n° 16) leads to Ratilly castle. 


The village of DRUYES-LES-BELLES-FONTAINES

is the subject of a circuit that passes by the castle of the same name (10.5 km, 3h00, average difficulty, Yonne topographical guide, n° 8).


The walled city of Avallon can be explored by following

THE AVALLON DISCOVERING ROUTE 

(8 km, 2h40, easy, Yonne topographical guide, n° 6) as it can be the point of departure or arrival of a two-day loop between

AVALLON AND VÉZELAY

(passing through Saint-Père and Vault-de-Lugny (2 x 18 km and 4h30, difficult, Burgundy topographical guide, n° 14 and 15).

The five routes of the Tour of Burgundy by Bike® are dotted with many heritage sites from the ducal period, including the city of Dijon, Chateauneuf-en-Auxois, Eguilly, Saint-Thibault, Montbard and Tonnerre along the Burgundy Canal, Auxerre and Clamecy on the route of the Nivernais Canal, Rully, Bourbon-Lancy and Nevers on the Canal du Centre, Saint- Gengoux-le-National, Cluny and Berzé-le-Châtel along the greenway in southern Burgundy as well as Beaune and La Rochepot on the Route of Vines. Many sites of ducal Burgundy, located near the canals, are accessible to boaters as well as cyclists.

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