From History to Gastronomy: 10 Compelling Reasons to Explore Dijon



From History to Gastronomy: 10 Compelling Reasons to Explore Dijon

A rich heritage, renowned free museums, an exceptional green setting with its parks and iconic lake, legendary vineyards dotted along the Grands Crus route, delicious culinary specialties and the new Cité Internationale of Gastronomy and Wine… all these make Dijon a unmissable green, gourmet and cultural capital in France.  

These 10 reasons to come to Dijon are an invitation to explore, to experience precious moments with family or friends, both in the bustling city and great outdoors.

1. Have a coffee en terrasse to start the day

In the heart of the city, Place François Rude unfolds its flowery half-timbered facades and attractive terraces. Here is where, facing the statue of Bareuzai and the carousel, you can sit back and enjoy a fresh cup of coffee before going to the Tourist Office to grab yourself a Dijon City Pass for 24H, 48H or 72H. The perfect moment to get a feel already for the atmosphere of the city… 


Grab yourself a Dijon City Pass © Alice Colas

2. Try a mustard-making workshop 

An experience around the creation of your own mustard in Dijon, in collaboration with the Edmond Fallot Moutarderie. Since 1840, the company has maintained its traditional know-how of grinding mustard seeds with a stone grinder, to preserve the exceptional taste of the paste. Crush, grind, season, mix and leave with your own composition. You are a mustard maker! 

Make your own mustard © Alice Colas

3. Dizzying drinks above Dijon 

From the top of the Philippe Le Bon Tower, built in the 15th century and which dominates the entire Palace of the Dukes, the view is magnificent. After “climbing” its 316 steps, open your eyes wide and admire the glazed tiled roofs some 40m below. 

At dusk, come back to experience a Tower apéritif with a glass in hand and Dijon at your feet. A unique experience every Friday and Saturday evening at 6:30pm or 8:00pm. Imagine yourself with your head in the stars contemplating the city at 360° while admiring the sunset. 

A towering apéritif! © Alice Colas

4. Enjoy a museum or a city tour 

A bit of culture, in one of the city’s free museums? Yes please! The Museum of Fine Arts, Burgundian Life or Sacred Arts, the Archaeological or Natural History Museum, the Rude Museum…are all free! 

Explorer? Hobbyist? Curious or in search of originality? The tour guides from the Tourist Office will accompany you on your visit to the city. Cultural, unusual, gastronomic or fun, there’s a thematic tour for everyone!  

The Musée Rude dedicated to sculptor François Rude © Alice Colas

5. Taste local delicacies 

After this immersion in art, specialized shops await you. Do some shopping at Boutique Vedrenne, famous for its Crème de Cassis, fall in love with the gingerbread at Fabrique Mulot et Petitjean or go to Moutarderie Fallot for a little spice. Along this gourmet walk, pass by the foot of the owl which you can spot nestled on the buttress of the Notre-Dame church and put your left hand on the mascot of Dijon to see a wish come true 

Gingerbread is a local specialty © Alice Colas

6. Dijon, the art of sharing 

With their fantastic central locations, the squares in Dijon are often the ideal place to take a seat for an al fresco dinner. From the Place du Marché, the Place de la République, the Place Emile Zola, the Place de la Libération, the Bareuzai, the Théâtre, to the Parvis de l’Unesco of the Cité Internationale de la Gastronomie, you will be spoiled for choice!  

The picturesque place de la Libération © Solodovnikova Elena / shutterstock

7. Roll up your sleeves for a Dijon Tourist Office workshop

Create, cook, and learn to live a real Dijon experience! Discover traditional know-hows from the capital of Bourgogne-Franche-Comté and immerse yourself in one of our workshops: the small gingerbread workshop of the Tower, a Yoga workshop, a cooking workshop with Dijon specialties, Burgundy wine and cheese Workshop or even a beer flavour workshop. With family, friends, as a couple, alone or with others, join us and liven up your stay. 

(c) Alice_Colas

8. Go for a cycle in the sun 

Rent a “Divia” bike and take the safe cycling route that follows the waterways. From the city centre, enjoy a nice wander along the Coulée Verte with walkers and rollerblades as your only companions! Take the towpath of the Burgundy Canal, then follow the Ouche, a peaceful river lined with alders, to Lake Kir. Perhaps you will see some ducks, herons and kingfishers? Return via Le Puits de Moïse and the Charterhouse of Champmol, a jewel of Burgundian religious art. 

(c) Alice_Colas

9. Sunday brunch in Les Halles 

Dijon brings together all the ingredients for an exceptional epicurean stay. No wonder the destination was selected to be the gateway to the World Valley of Gastronomy! Head to Les Halles to tuck into an amazing brunch created throughout the summer by chefs who orchestrate a wonderful parade of sweet and savoury dishes. An opportunity to taste local and seasonal products, le Brunch des Halles is a not-to-be-missed Dijon experience! 

(c) Alice_Colas

10. The International City of Gastronomy and Wine 

You simply cannot leave Dijon without having discovered this “lighthouse” between city and vineyards. Listed as an intangible heritage site by UNESCO, the International City of Gastronomy and Wine of Dijon has settled on the location of the former Hospices de Dijon. 

To learn, explore, feast, these are the key words of your visit. Between the many exhibitions, the cooking school, the Burgundy wine school, the shops, the gourmet bookshop, the cellar, the restaurants…you won’t know where to turn. Let your five senses guide you through this unique gastronomic and cultural experience.  

For more information, visit and follow on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and TikTok

Cité Internationale de la Gastronomie © Alice Colas

Lead photo credit : © Miwok - Wikimedia Commons

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