Fancy a weekend getaway? Choose Besançon, a discreet city that's always a safe bet! In case you're not convinced, here are a few convincing arguments: a location just a 2-hour trip from Paris by TGV high-speed train and 1 hour from the Jura Mountains, a UNESCO-listed Vauban citadel, parks and gardens galore, a lovely riverside walk, and renowned museums like the Fine Arts Museum. In short, we defy you to not fall in love with Besançon!

Day 1

The essentials

Morning: The UNESCO-listed Vauban Citadel

Your weekend begins with a must-see, the Vauban Citadel. After all, you can't miss it. Listed by UNESCO, this fortress is worth a half-day visit all by itself.

Expect to

Discover the Citadel

Day 1

The essentials

Afternoon: Town centre

Next, head for the town centre for coffee on a café terrace in Place Granvelle, the square dotted with horse chestnut trees. There you'll see the statue of Victor Hugo, who came from Besançon. That's right, and you can even visit the house where he was born!

Afterwards, step inside the Granvelle Palace. This Renaissance gem houses the Time Museum which pays homage to local clockmaking traditions and the local passion for high-precision timekeeping that goes back a long way.

Between locally-made clocks and the Foucault pendulum, you won't have time to be bored!

Then go for a stroll to admire the city's elegant classical facades, pretty fountains and inner courtyards oozing with charm. The Grandes Heures Nature app proposes itineraries that take you exploring the entire town.

Day 2

Nature & Culture

Morning: parks and gardens

A morning of nature and fresh air right in the town! There's greenery everywhere in Besançon, the city that was named the "French biodiversity capital" in 2018. Micaud Promenade, Gare d’Eau park, Chamars park, you'll be spoilt for choice when it comes to walks! To fully appreciate just how green the city is, we recommend the river walk on the banks of the Doubs.

On foot or by riverboat, you'll realise that the city flourishes in an outstanding natural environment.

Afternoon: architecture and contemporary art

Do not miss the Cité des Arts! The building's architecture is as decidedly contemporary as the collections it houses from the FRAC (Regional Contemporary Art Collection). Outside, the Pixel terrace invites you to enjoy a well-deserved drink and a panoramic view of the river, the boats in the river port and the tree-covered hills.

fluvial à Besançon
Corinne VASSELET / BFC Tourisme
fluvial à Besançon Corinne VASSELET / BFC Tourisme
promenade à la gare d'eau
Ville de Besançon
promenade à la gare d'eau Ville de Besançon
La Cité des Arts à Besançon
Alain_DOIRE__Bourgogne-Franche-Comte_Tourisme
La Cité des Arts à Besançon Alain_DOIRE__Bourgogne-Franche-Comte_Tourisme
La Cité des Arts au bord du Doubs - Besançon
Eric_CHATELAIN__Ville_de_Besancon
La Cité des Arts au bord du Doubs - Besançon Eric_CHATELAIN__Ville_de_Besancon
Balade à Besançon à la Gare d'Eau
M.COQUARD et E.DETREZ Bestjobers / Bourgogne-Franche-Comte Tourisme
Balade à Besançon à la Gare d'Eau M.COQUARD et E.DETREZ Bestjobers / Bourgogne-Franche-Comte Tourisme
Week-end à Besançon
Alain_DOIRE__Bourgogne-Franche-Comte_Tourisme
Week-end à Besançon Alain_DOIRE__Bourgogne-Franche-Comte_Tourisme

Find all these sites on the map

Street interview

Burghard - German tourist

Besançon and the citadel are famous. We've seen Vauban on the Arte TV channel and really wanted to do this visit. We love this type of architecture, which doesn't exist in Germany. The roofs are also very picturesque. The scenery in this region is extremely beautiful and relaxing, and there aren't too many tourists. We'll definitely be back in any case! 

Our selection of places to stay

Hotels and guestrooms in Besançon

En résumé
A propos
fluvial à Besançon Corinne VASSELET / BFC Tourisme
promenade à la gare d'eau Ville de Besançon
La Cité des Arts à Besançon Alain_DOIRE__Bourgogne-Franche-Comte_Tourisme
La Cité des Arts au bord du Doubs - Besançon Eric_CHATELAIN__Ville_de_Besancon
Balade à Besançon à la Gare d'Eau M.COQUARD et E.DETREZ Bestjobers / Bourgogne-Franche-Comte Tourisme
Week-end à Besançon Alain_DOIRE__Bourgogne-Franche-Comte_Tourisme