The wine capital Beaune

The wine capital Beaune

Map showing Beaune in Burgundy


To wine lovers "all roads lead to Beaune", once you've visited the town you'll understand why.

View photos of Beaune

Beaune was once an important centre of the territory ruled by the Dukes of Burgundy who made the city the parliamentary seat of Burgundy.
Now Beaune is home to some of the most important wine houses and has retained its prestigious history.

It is said that there are more than 100 kilometres of tunnels and wine cellars below the old streets, storing hundreds of thousands of red, white, rosé and other types of bottled wine.

The old walled city retains some of its hue ramparts which encircled and protected the people throughout the centuries and the town is concentrated around the magnificent "Hospices".

Once you are within the "walls" there are many cobbled and pedestrian streets to explore at your ease, making the town a joy to visit.

Les Hospices de Beaune

Hospices de Beaune built in 1442
The colourful glazed roof tiles of the Hospices de Beaune

The famous Hospices de Beaune was built in 1442, this is one of the highlights of visiting Beaune, and although the exterior of the building is purposely austere and unimpressive, when you enter the courtyard you will be fascinated by the dazzling coloured roofs. Also, do not forget to visit the stunning "polyptych" mural by Rogier van der Weyden which was painted between from 1143 to1452.

The history of "Les Hospices de Beaune"

Musee du vin, the wine museum

Musee du vin in Beaune
This half-timbered building is home to the wine Museum, hidden in one of the small streets close to the Les Hospices.

Streets and markets

In the old city centre, there are fine boutiques, cheese and wine bars, cafes and terraces, markets and cobbled streets to explore around the Place Carnot.

Market in Beaune

Beaune is home to a grand and colourful Saturday market with fresh fruit, vegetables, cheese, meats to delight your taste buds and many other products

Beaune indoor market
The indoor market area has stands with all kinds of meats, cheese and other fresh products. This building is called "Les Halles de Beaune" and each year is host to the "Vente des Vins des Hospices de Beaune", a wine auction held every 3rd weekend of November.
French garlic market stand
 Along the market streets, there will be honey, whicker baskets, clothes and of course different varieties of garlic.

Visit the Place Carnot and enjoy a drink at the terrasse and try the Marché aux Vins beside the Hospices for a fun wine-tasting tour.

Events during World War 2

During World War Two, on the 16th of June 1940, planes overflew the city at 8 pm. There were 15 German planes with an objective which at first did not seem to be the city of Beaune, however, after a first fly over it, they turned back and strafe the train station while unloading around thirty bombs which exploded. About 20 people were killed and many more wounded.

The railway station of Beaune was an important junction for the French soldiers sent on leave and thus became an easy target. It seems the army and the defenders of Beaune only had two light machine guns and only one was able to be used during the bombing. A plane was hit during the first passage, a Junker 87B which exploded. In the second passage, another Junker was shot and collided with one of his partners. Two German pilots were buried in the garden of the company they crashed into.

Later, the German army entered the city and met heavy resistance from the French army. The fighting lasted three hours, the French eventually retreated when more German armoured forces arrived in Beaune.

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