The capital of Upper Normandy, Rouen is a delightful city on the banks of the river Seine. Its narrow, winding streets are lined with half-timbered houses, its old quarter dominated by one of France’s most beautiful gothic cathedrals. On a site which had seen a cathedral since the 12th century, the structure you see today was a work in progress for three centuries, making it a fascinating study in the whole of Gothic architecture. It may seem familiar even if you haven’t visited –- Impressionist painter Claude Monet spent two years here painting it 28 times in the 1890s.
The surroundings streets are pedestrianised, making it a very pleasant city to stroll around. Don’t miss the splendid 14th-century clock, one of the oldest in Europe. Nearby you come across the modern, and impressive Church of Sainte-Jeanne d’Arc, shaped like a boat inside. A cross outside marks the spot where Joan of Arc was burned at the stake in 1431.
Museums, including a delightful ceramic museum, a botanical garden, one of France’s oldest restaurants and good hotels make Rouen an excellent place for an overnight stay.
Book at the Hotel de Bourgtheroulde in central Rouen