Nestled in the heart of the Champagne region in France lies the beautiful city of Reims. Known as the Champagne capital, this charming city has a rich history dating back to the Roman times. From sipping the finest champagne to exploring Gothic architecture, Reims is a must-visit destination for both history buffs and wine enthusiasts.
The Champagne Capital: Reims
The city of Reims is synonymous with champagne, and rightly so. It is home to some of the world’s most renowned champagne houses, including Mumm, Veuve Clicquot, and Taittinger. Visitors can take guided tours of the cellars and learn about the process of creating this exquisite drink. The annual champagne festival in July attracts wine lovers from all over the world.
A City Steeped in History
Reims boasts a rich history that spans over two thousand years. It was the site where Clovis, the first king of the Franks, was baptized, and every French king after him was crowned in the city’s majestic cathedral. The city was also the site of one of the most crucial battles of World War I. Visitors can learn about the city’s history in the museums or take a stroll through the ancient streets.
Sipping and Tasting in Reims
Reims is not just about champagne; it also has an excellent culinary scene. Visitors can enjoy traditional French fare in the many bistros and restaurants dotted around the city. The local produce, including the famous pink biscuit, is a must-try. Wine tastings and food tours are also available for those who want to explore Reims’ gastronomic delights.
Champagne Houses and Cellars Galore
The champagne houses in Reims are steeped in history and offer visitors a glimpse into the world of champagne-making. Visitors can take a tour of the cellars and see the impressive collection of vintage champagnes. The Taittinger cellars, located in an ancient quarry, are a sight to behold. Visitors can also witness the process of disgorgement, which separates the sediment from the champagne.
Gothic Masterpiece: Reims Cathedral
The imposing Reims Cathedral is a Gothic masterpiece and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is one of the most significant cathedrals in France and has seen the coronation of French kings for over 800 years. The cathedral’s stunning stained glass windows and the intricate stonework are awe-inspiring. Visitors can take a guided tour of the cathedral and learn about its history.
Exploring Reims’ Charming Old Town
Reims’ charming old town is a delight to explore, with its cobblestone streets and half-timbered houses. The Place Drouet d’Erlon, the city’s main square, is lined with cafes and bars and is the perfect place to people-watch. The Palace of Tau, a former archbishop’s palace, has been converted into a museum and is worth a visit. Visitors can also take a stroll through the city’s many parks and gardens.
Reims is a city that has something for everyone, from champagne lovers to history buffs. The city’s charm and beauty make it a must-visit destination in France. With its rich history, excellent gastronomy, and stunning architecture, Reims is a city that will leave visitors with unforgettable memories.