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Visit Burgundy France
Burgundy’s capital is Dijon, one of the most beautiful French cities and with many interesting things to see and do. The region is divided into four departments: Yonne (89), Côte d’Or (21), Nièvre (58), and Saône-et-Loire (71).
Burgundy wine region produces some of the most exclusive wines throughout the world and also the most expensive. Wine from Burgundy includes several famous French wines, with the region best known for its Chardonnay (white Burgundy), Beaujolais Nouveau, and Pinot Noir (Burgundy red wine). Other types of Burgundy wine include a small number of rosés and sparkling wines.
Burgundy France is not only about wine, vineyards, and domains: the region is also known for its extraordinary historical heritage, with beautiful French castles and abbeys, and its villages. The villages in Burgundy are some of France’s most picturesque, and some of them are listed plus beaux villages de France (most beautiful villages in France).
Here’s the roundup of the most beautiful villages in Burgundy France (and a couple of best towns in Burgundy), with a map to help you pinpoint all these picturesque Burgundy villages.
Best Way to Visit the Burgundy Villages
Although we love traveling by train, this area is best explored by car. Driving in France is very easy, and you will love the freedom of having your own car in France.
Some of the best French road trips cover the region of Burgundy, and you will love driving through the picturesque Burgundy villages and vineyards.
When you visit Burgundy, you can combine the exploration of towns and best villages in Burgundy with one of the top-rated Burgundy Wine Routes (we recommend the Route des Grands Crus).
TIP: Want to ensure your wine makes it home? Check out this wine tote bags and wine suitcases quick guide
If you don’t have your own car, you can hire one in France’s main cities. If you want to avoid the hassle of driving through the big cities, you can take a direct train from Paris or Lyon to Dijon in Burgundy and start your road trip from Dijon.
We recommend booking your car with RentalCars.com. This site is great because it takes all of the major rental companies, such as Hertz, Avis, etc., and more and makes the comparison of prices for you. This helps to ensure that you get a great price without all the time and work.
Best Villages in Burgundy Map
Most Beautiful Villages in Burgundy
Here’s the list of the most beautiful villages in Burgundy, France. They are all small, so when you visit Burgundy, you can combine two or three Burgundy villages in the same day.
GOOD TO KNOW: in France, the statistical limits proposed by the INSEE (National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies) are as follows: when the agglomeration has less than 2,000 inhabitants, whose buildings must be within 200 m of each other, it is a village; between 2,000 and 5,000 inhabitants, it is a town; between 5,000 and 20,000 inhabitants, it is a small city; between 20,000 and 50,000 inhabitants a medium-size city, between 50,000 and 200,000 inhabitants a large city; beyond, geographers speak of a metropolis.
Noyers-Sur-Serein, in the Yonne department, is one of the most beautiful medieval villages in Burgundy, thanks to its beautiful setting and the unique preservation of its architectural heritage. Indeed, no less than 78 buildings are listed as Historical Monuments in this prosperous village.
Explore Noyers’ ramparts flanked by 19 towers and 3 fortified gates and stroll the village’s narrow cobbled streets with beautiful half-timbered houses. You will also see stunning Renaissance-style private mansions and winegrowers’ houses.
Bordered by the Grand Crus de Bourgogne’s vineyards and crossed by the Serein River, there’s no lack of photo opportunities in Noyers-Sur-Serein.
Vézelay, in the Yonne department, is one of the most picturesque Burgundy villages. Located on the top of a hill and surrounded by ramparts, Vézelay is well known for its Romanesque basilica Sainte Marie Magdaleine and its historical heritage.
A must of any Burgundy trip, Vézelay is also the departure point of one of Santiago de Compostela’s main roads in France, the Via Lemovicencis, and an important pilgrimage site for Christians in France.
Both the village and the basilica are Unesco Heritage Sites, and it’s a beautiful place to explore, perhaps in combination with some Burgundy wine tastings at the local producers.
Because of its popularity, Vézelay has good accommodation and food options for a night or two. If you decide to spend the night in Vézelay, there are beautiful hotels located outside the walls, while in inner Vézelay, many little restaurants are proposing great local food.
Châteauneuf-en-Auxois, located in the Côte d’Or department, is one of the ‘most beautiful villages in France.’ This picturesque Burgundy village stands on a rocky outcrop, and it is surrounded by a medieval fortress, with beautiful stone houses, churches and pediments, and turrets of the 15th century.
Don’t’ miss the visit to the 16th-century château, a superb example of medieval military architecture.
The romantic village of Flavigny-Sur-Ozerain, located beyond the hills of Montbard in Côte d’Or, is another of the villages in Burgundy with the label ‘most beautiful villages in France‘.
Follow the ramparts walk, stroll the medieval streets with its stone houses from the Middle Ages and Rennaissance and admire its beautiful Benedictine abbey, the architecture of Flavigny is a wonder!
But Flavigny-Sur-Ozerain is also a paradise for foodies with excellent restaurants proposing great local cuisine paired with some of the best Burgundy wines.
Flavigny’s abbey is the only place producing the famous Anis de Flavigny (Flavigny aniseed sweets) with a remained unchanged recipe since the 16th century.
DID YOU KNOW? Flavigny-Sur-Ozerain and its vineyards served in 2000 as the backdrop of the film ‘Chocolat’ with Juliette Binoche and Johnny Depp.
Bonus: Best Towns in Burgundy France
We wanted to complete this article with a couple of beautiful towns in Burgundy well worth the visit. These Burgundy towns are definitely much bigger than the Burgundy villages so you will need more time to visit them.
During your Burgundy wanderings, consider staying in one of these Burgundy towns for an authentic Burgundy experience.
Saulieu (Côte d’Or) is a walled Burgundy town that exists since Roman times, with beautiful historical buildings at every corner. Burgundy’s cute small town is also the gateway to the Morvan Regional Natural Park with endless outdoor activities.
If history and nature are not enough, Saulieu proposes visitors a gourmet stopover with excellent local produce and several great internationally renowned restaurants.
At the turn of a meander of Armançon River, the picturesque village of Semur-en-Auxois (Côte d’Or) raises its red roofs on a promontory of pink granite.
Semur-en-Auxois has a legendary origin; Hercules built it on his way back to Spain! Wander Semur’s cobbled alleyways and admire the town’s beautiful architecture of half-timbered houses, dominated by the Gothic collegiate church and the donjon. It’s no wonder that Semur-en-Auxois bears the label ‘Cité de Caractère de Bourgogne-Franche Comté.’
And there you have it, the list of most beautiful villages in Burgundy France completed with two of the best towns in Burgundy. What are your favorite Burgundy villages?
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