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A Couple's Guide to Dijon, France

Picture of Sylvia Edwards Davis
Updated: 28 April 2017
Dijon sets the stage for romance with a perfect recipe of medieval architecture, art, history, world-class dining and the best wines in the world. The delicate balance of big city sophistication and small-town friendliness makes the capital of Burgundy an idyllic destination for an escape a deux.

Check into a palace

Setting the tone for something special, a room in a converted mansion or a medieval royal abode could be yours for the night. The Grand Hotel de La Clochein is a palace you can actually stay in, right in the heart of the historical centre. Let the pampering begin.

©Grand Hotel La Cloche, Dijon

©Grand Hotel La Cloche, Dijon

Stroke an owl

Go for a relaxed walk hand in hand along the medieval center, and for a good omen, touch the owl stone carving on the medieval Notre Dame church. For centuries, passers-by have brushed their left hand on la chouette for good luck – it’s a legendary local tradition.

Drink up the art

The city was once one of the main centers of power in medieval Europe, and the influence of that heritage is felt at every turn. Dijon has some of the most important museums in France, and there’s no better place to start exploring this legacy than with the rich collection at the Musée des Beaux Arts, set in the very medieval palace where the Dukes of Burgundy held court.

Palais des Ducs, Dijon ©OT Dijon/A. Demoulin

Palais des Ducs, Dijon ©OT Dijon/A. Demoulin

Make an effort

While you are the Palais des Ducs, to mark the highpoint of the day, in more ways than one, climb the medieval tower of Philippe Le Bon. If timed right before sunset, the city lays at the lover’s feet like a twinkling tapestry; with the vineyards just visible in the hills beyond. Could there be a better spot to declare your eternal devotion?

View from the Philippe le Bon tower ©OT Dijon

View from the Philippe le Bon tower ©OT Dijon

Sample the wines

Dijon is a haven for wine lovers. Located at the gateway for the world-renowned Route des Grands Crus is a path to some of the best – and most expensive – wines in the world. Talking to a connoisseur in a wine cellar or wine bar is a great way to start or perfect a wine education; sharing notes and basking in the warmth of the centuries of know-how captured in a bottle. And when you get back home, those notes can become the basis of your very own Burgundy cellar.

Try something new

Linger over a multi-course gourmet dinner at one of the many romantic restaurants in the city. Go on, splurge. Awaken the senses by daring to try something you have never tasted before. There’s something exquisitely sensual in sharing a ‘first’ together. You are in good hands. Dijon is known even among the French for the excellent cuisine and impeccable service – a fitting highlight for a memorable interlude.