In the middle of France there is a region that will drag you in like the comic book in A-ha's 'Take on me' video. Burgundy might not have the cartoonish look; it sure has the mysterious feel. It's a region famous for its wine, which shares the same name. Burgundy remained independent of the French Drown for centuries and even sided with the English for a while, selling them the captured Joan of Arc. The history of powerful dukes is visible throughout the area. The impressive cultural sights that go back to the Roman Empire combined with the wonderful food make the region a must visit. Follow our drive from Macon to Dijon to experience every single bit of this impressive region.
There is a reason why 35,000 Maconnais would not leave this small city for the world. Could it be because in 2007 Macon was awarded the Gran Prix and '4 flowers' in the Entente Florale competition, or because it holds more Ancient History than your average high school textbook? The last one seems more likely, as a stroll through Macon will take you across the Old Saint-Vincent which was built in the 11th century and the Memorial Citoyen where you will be educated on the many invasions and wars this city has encountered. The Maconnais vineyards hold the well known Chardonnay as their favourite variety, so do not hesitate to follow the grape stained road.
Using the main direct route of the A6 motorway ensures smooth and simplistic driving in France (cheer) with only a few turns off the beaten track. From Macon, the journey heads north for an hour arriving at Chalon-sur-Saone, a vintage town and previously very active port, used for the distribution of local wines. St. Vincent's Cathedral has some elements dating back to the eighth century (yes there is a St. Vincent's in nearly every town and definitely all worth a visit) or circle the city square and taste test the cafes on offer. It's well worth a visit to Chalon-sur-Saone in July as this is when the International Street Artist Festival will take place.
Join the N6 motorway and within half an hour, you will arrive in a wonderful place that goes by the name of Santenay. Gently humming with an atmosphere not found in many other places, Santenay lives to the rhythm of vineyards and wines. The differences in the nutrient composition of the soils here gives birth to the various bouquets of wines, but the most popular one is the Pinot Noir. Drive through the hills and enjoy a typical French landscape. The wines in this region are usually cheaper than in other places around France, so it can be easy on the purse strings to visit one of the many wineries.
Follow the D974 and make your way to the capital of Burgundy: Beaune. Situated in the heart of Wine road, the carefully selected facilities will put novices at ease and test connoisseurs' knowledge. To match the wines on offer, order a local speciality in of the many restaurants: beef bourguignon.A stroll after dinner will take you past medieval half-timbered houses and gardens. Beneath the cobblestone streets lie treasures that make a visit to Beaune complete. You are invited to explore the underground culture of what made this city the centre of the international wine trade; cellars.
Once satisfied with the gastronomical activity in Beaune, jump into the car and head north to the city famous for its mustard. However, with amazing architecture, Dijon offers far more than just mustard. Post World War II, buildings are still largely intact and monuments such as the Dijon Cathedral, Musee des Beaux-Arts de Dijon and the Palace of the Dukes are classic examples. Driving is limited in the city centre, so it's best to park your car and walk through the pedestrian friendly streets. Before hitting the road again, do not forget to pop in to the iconic mustard shop, as the chocolate mustard may be a variety unfamiliar to tourists.Burgundy is an experience filled with bohemian towns, beautiful landscapes and packed with tasty and artistic treasures. You could choose to extend your stay in the region utilising the array of accommodation with a terrace house or inexpensive cottage, but if not, Burgundy would be glad to play host for day trip round two.
I'm not too sure about you but I sure am ready to fine dine! If you need any assistance sorting out your car hire, give our friendly reservations staff a call on 1300 656 601 or simply browse our website to find what you are looking for!