Archaeologists have found traces of human presence in Reims since the Neolithic Age. The city of Reims is located in the department of Marne, in the eastern part of France. During Antiquity, Reims was one of the most populous settlement of the Gallo-Roman period.
Located 144 kilometers from Paris, its name refers to the Gallic people of Remes, whose territory included the Seine, the Marne and the Meuse. This Gallic people chose to ally themselves with Julius Caesar, and remained faithful to the Roman Empire during the Gaelic war. According to other historians, this people would be of Celtic origin. During the ancient period, the city of Reims experienced attacks by the vandals (Germanic invaders) who executed the bishop of Nicaise in front of the church where the Reims refugees were seeking shelter (402).
Shortly before the Middle Age, the city was also invaded by the Huns, before submitting itself to the Frankish King Clovis. According to the historian Gregory of Tours, the city of Reims would be at the origin of the Carolingian dynasty.
During the 5th century, the sovereign Clovis and 3,000 free soldiers were baptized in Reims, at the site of the present cathedral of Notre-Dame. Since this baptism consecutive to the reconversion of the king, Reims is the seat of the coronation of the kings of France. Reims becomes much more prosperous during the reign of Louis XIV, when the Champagne begins to know a true rise. But the city had been trading cloths and fabrics since the Middle Age, long before the invention of this sparkling drink in the 17th century. The Reims population has tripled by the end of the first year of the industrial revolution. This industrial and demographic revolution prompted the city to build fabulous mansions.
At the end of the First World War, the people of Reims suffered heavy consequences, with a city destroyed more than 60% by bombing of the German Army. Historians have estimated at 300 the number of shells fired on the Cathedral of Reims, more than ever deserving to be called the Martyrs’ Cathedral. 5,000 victims were deplored during the war of 1914. The city of Reims was released at the end of the Battle of the Marne. During the last months of the Second World War, Reims saw the signing of the Nazi capitulation at the Lycée Franklin Roosevelt.
Reims’ architecture has been enriched by its exchanges with many European peoples. Gallo-Roman vestiges, medieval monuments, but also the museums of the 1st and 2nd World War contribute to the city’s original and eclectic architecture. This originality results from the intervention of a cohort of several hundred architects called for the reconstruction of the city during the inter-war period.
Reims is one of the cradles of aeronautics and welcomes several meetings of aviators since the beginning of the 20th century. Some of the first international air rallies were held in the city.
Reims tourist center: visit the cathedral, the museum and the Mars Gate
From the Gallo-Roman vestiges to medieval monuments, not to mention the traces of the two world wars, Reims is a tourist attraction and has a large number of hotels for tourists and students.
The Notre-Dame Cathedral of Reims is a Gothic building, one of the oldest of its kind. This cathedral has seen the coronation of French kings since the conversion of King Clovis. Located on the Place Cardinal de Luçon, it is inscribed on the World Heritage List. The first cathedral of Reims was founded in the 5th century and restored during the 13th century. Despite the fires, some stained-glass windows in the 13th century remained visible. Since that time, the cathedral has a choir of adults, but also children. This cathedral is open for visits throughout the year.
The Mars Gate
This Roman arch was part of the access to the ancient city during antiquity. Always visible, this door refers to the God Mars, to which a temple was dedicated. The Mars Gate was erected in the third century. It enters the list of historical monuments in 1840.
The Rendition Museum
Founded by the city of Reims in 1985, the Rendition Museum is commemorating the surrender of Nazi Germany on May 7th 1945, at the end of the Second World War. The rendition room is classified as a historic monument since December 31st, 1985. It is a must-see for researchers in military history or art history.
Which are the hotels in Reims offering excellent location, 3 stars and equipped rooms?
A 2-star hotel, Cecyl combines modernity with old-world charm. Located in the city, the decoration of its rooms recalls that of the Museum of Fine Arts. A double room is available from 85 €. This property has an excellent location in the city of Reims. It is less than one kilometer from the train station and close to major shopping centers in the city.
Grand Hotel du Nord
Located in the heart of the Cité des Sacres, the Grand Hotel du Nord offers 49 rooms equipped with bathroom, WC and a flat-screen TV. A stay in Reims will always be worth it, if you choose to stay in this hotel. A 10-minute walk from Notre-Dame Cathedral, the Grand Hotel du Nord has 3 stars.
Charming hotel with 24 rooms equipped with a flat screen TV, this hotel is ideally located near the city center, a pleasant and quiet place. The future guests of Au Tambour will benefit from its hammam or Turkish Baths, an installation which has recently become functional. Au Tambour is haloed by 4 stars. Its rooms can be rented for 89 euros.
How to get from Reims to Charles de Gaulles Aiport in a minivan
144 kilometers separate Reims from Roissy CDG airport. To make the journey by minivan, you will have to go through the A4, join the A344 on the Jean Taittinger track, then your driver can join the A140.