About the History of Chalon sur Saone and its surroundings
Chalon-sur-Saône is in the eastern part of France. 300 km southeast of Paris, this commune of Saône-et-Loire is part of the Burgundy region. Châlons-sur-Saône is located just 100 km far from the Franco-Swiss border and 120 km away from Geneva. It has been present on the banks of the Saône for over 2,000 years. During the Middle Ages, Chalon-sur-Saône was the first city of the department in number of inhabitants. Chalon-sur-Saône is a sub-prefecture of the Saône-et-Loire, a naval base in Antiquity and a major center of contemporary trade. Chalon-sur-Saône is experiencing a rapid development of the river trade with the completion of the construction of the Burgundy Canal and as the canal from the Rhone to the Rhine completes. In 1839, the Schneider factories of Le Creusot settled here, its shipyards producing torpedo boats or submersibles: Chalon became a cultural city with an industrial past.
On Fridays and Sundays, the markets are very attractive colored. The carnival tanks take us back to the traditional "Feast of the fools".
Chalon has two exits on the A6 motorway, access to the waterways and the TGV.
In the Middle Age, Chalon-sur-Saône was considered a Roman city in the 3rd century, lined with walls. In the seventeenth and eighteenth century, houses and private mansions were built, following the influence of large industrial sites, all the activities happening mostly around the canal. The old center of Chalon is listed as a protected site and attracts continuous monitoring. The birth of many of the National Conservatory of Region, the Coliseum, the IUT, contribute to a progressive renown of Chalon.
Discover Chalon-sur-Saône: its port, the museums and galleries, the street festival
The barge port
With nearly 1,200 km of rivers and canals, Burgundy is the ‘eldorado’ of pleasure tourism. The barge port of Chalon-sur-Saône allows you to rent boats with docks. Take a simple tour or sail for a week on the canals or on the Saône, discover adventure getaways for families, couples or group of friends, all this in favour of routine escape and change of scenery!
Located on the edge of the Place of Port Villiers, suitable for bucolic walks, walks and idleness, this marina has been designed for river tourism.
Close to the heart of the town, the Quai Gambetta and the Quai des Messageries, this port sees 6000 boats passing each year, of which 5000 are private German, American and Swiss liveaboards. The marina of Chalon-sur-Saône is an international appointment of yachtsmen and cruisers.
Museums and Galleries
The Denon Museum
One of the French museums located in Chalon-sur-Saône and among the most frequented in Saône-et-Loire, the Denon Museum highlights archaeology, decorative arts, Fine Arts and History. The museum is named after Dominique Vivant Denon, a French designer, engraver, writer, diplomat and administrator.
Considered a great forerunner of museology, art history and Egyptology, the Denon Museum is listed as a historical monument. Apart from the museum, a mansion in the region also bears the name of the one who was the first director of the Louvre.
The inventor of photography, Niépce, was born on March 7th, 1765. He grew up in Chalon-sur-Saône and developed here an eponymous museum devoted to the art of the image, its history and to the materials of the "mechanical image". This museum offers a collection of 20000 free pictures.
Among the many devices displayed, the Daguerreotype is not to be missed. Compare it to the small spy-devices by the end of the XXth century! More than two million images and objects are found, including the first camera model ever created.
Inventor of genius, Niepce died while most of his inventions were still unknown to the general public.
Festival Chalon in the street
Every year, a reunion of street artists from all over the world takes place in Chalon. An unmissable event for more than 25 years now, the organizers of Chalon in the Street ensure an eclectic and unusual agenda, source of discoveries for people from all over the world.
A thousand performances over three days, 300.000 festival-goers, Chalon in the Rue brings together the spectators who rub shoulders, both at the ‘In’ as at the ‘Off’. One offers a program that brings together a large audience, while the other, although more intimate, remains nevertheless a source of beautiful discoveries. This street festival is one of the major events of the Big East. At the Chalon street festival one can follow the artists across the city. It is a beautiful introduction to your visit to the Côte Chalonnaise along the ‘Route of great wines’.
Which hotels offer an unforgettable stay at Chalon sur Saone?
Hotel Ibis Chalon-sur-Saone Europe (3 stars)
Located 4.3 km from Chalon Cathedral and the former residence of the Duke of Burgundy, this hotel offers simply furnished rooms with free Wi-Fi. It also has a meeting room, a swimming pool and a wine bar with the best specialties of the region.
A 7-minute walk from Chalon Cathedral, this hotel is 11 km away from Chateau de Germolles. For an additional fee, the hotel offers a buffet breakfast. Hotel Kyriad also has a gym and a sauna. The staff is trained to welcome tourists from around the world.
Hotel Saint-Régis (4 stars)
A neoclassical, casual hotel, it is a 7-minute walk from the train station and 10 minutes away from the Niépce Museum. Located in a historic building in the center of Chalon-sur-Saone, Saint Regis’ Hotel features a gourmet restaurant serving typical dishes of the region. The rooms, comfortable and personalized in a traditional style, will offer you an unforgettable stay.
How to get from Chalon-sur-Saône to Paris
To drive from Chalon sur Saône to Paris (341km), the shortest way is to take the A6 towards Paris. Take the exit towards Paris-Center / Porte de Bercy and leave the Paris ring road. Tell your chauffeur to continue on the Quai de Bercy towards the Rivoli street.