Some background information...
The Aedui, a Gallic tribe built their capital, Bibracte, up on Mont-Beuvray (Morvan) so they could watch over the passages between all the great rivers that flow through Burgundy. A strategic choice!
The town was abandoned for Autun (Augustodunum), and was soon forgotten. Since the 19th century, it has been slowly rising from the ashes thanks to the painstaking work from the archaeologists and scientists. They've done a fantastic job! You can now see the streets, districts, houses and cellars, and fountains, spread over almost 200 hectares!
Some extraordinary people have passed through Bibracte over the years. So now it's your turn! Let's start with Vercingetorix, who was proclaimed head of the Gallic tribes. Julius Caesar also passed through here after his victory in Alesia. It is believed that it was in Bibracte that he finished writing his book "Gallic War".
the excavations and the museum
The town of Bibracte was abandoned 2 thousand years ago and is now slowly rising from the ashes thanks to the excavation work that has been carried out here every year since the 19th century. Each year, new discoveries are made and we learn more and more about the lives of our ancestors here.
So just make sure you've got good walking shoes and you're ready to set off alone or with a guide, to come and explore the town of the Aedui tribe across 200 hectares of land. An impressive archaeological site, listed as a "Grand Site de France"!Archaeological site of Bibracte
The Musée Archéologique de Bibracte is in an ultra modern building, made from concrete and glass... and is perfectly blended into the natural environment of Morvan.
In Burgundy, "Archaeology" doesn't necessarily mean "old and dusty"! This museum is full of innovative digital devices that tell the story of Bibracte and how the site has been rediscovered over time. Workshops, guided tours, screens, tablets, etc. your time here will fly by!The Musée de Bibracte
In the footsteps of Vercingetorix
It was in Bibracte that Vercingetorix was proclaimed head of the Gallic tribes before later coming into battle with the Roman Empire, and being forced to surrender to Julius Caesar, and therefore letting the Roman Empire take over Gaul.
From the heights of Bibracte to the oppidum in Alesia, there is a trail that takes visitors through the highlights of the history of the Gauls. The trail is as close as possible to the historic facts and to the actual route taken by the Gallic troops who came to follow their chief Vercingetorix. You can choose how you want to explore this route, either on foot, on horseback or on a mountain bike.
You'll see them as you are exploring Mont-Beuvray. They are twisted, rounded, bumpy... you can't miss them! "So what are they?" You may ask.
They are known as "queules": the remains of ancient hedgerows. In the past, young trees would be woven together to create hedgerows and therefore mark out the fields. As soon as a hedge lost its leaves, the branches would be woven together on the ground, much like wickerwork. This technique can be traced all the way back to our ancestors, the Gauls!
For an all-round experience, you could add these other places to your itinerary!
When the town of Bibracte was abandoned, it was replaced by Autun, or "Augustodunum", and this place also has some interesting Gallo-Roman heritage sites to see. In Autun, you can expect a journey back in time!Explore Autun
Bibracte was built up on this peak, and there are now plenty of walks to do around the area, either alone or with a guide.Find out about Mont Beuvray
A 100% natural area with something for everyone, whether you are looking for culture, sport or gastronomy. Or everything rolled into one! A small mountain at the centre of Burgundy with everything you could possibly need for the ultimate relaxing getaway.Let's go to Morvan