"Hidden treasures of Besançon in Franche-Comté" Top 5 Page for this destination Besançon by Loeffle
Besançon Travel Guide: 71 reviews and 178 photos
The origins of Besançon go back to Roman Age. It's strategic location on the loops of the Doubs River was already discovered by Romans. But the region was only in Roman hands for a couple of centuries before native tribes took over. But nevertheless there's even some Roman architecture left in Besançon.
Throughout history the town (as the whole region) was an important border bastion in the East of France. But actually the town became Spanish for some decades. Until the 19th century there was only one bridge over the Doubs river.
Until that time only the inner part of the Doubs peninsula was settled. The parts closer to water were swamplands. Vauban who built the French Eastern defence in the 17th and 18th century choose the rocky hill as location for one of his masterpiece fortifications: the Besançon Citadel.
Vauban is gone, German-French border wars are gone, but the Citadel is still there, and definetely Besançon's main attraction. It has been restored to a remarkably high standard and hosts almost ten museums and exhibtions.
Besides Besançon is a lively university town with some 120,000 inhabitants with some nice hidden treasures. Might be a good place to visit in combination with Belfort and Dijon, both towns are less than an hour away.
- Pros:charming old town, lovely located, wonderful citadel
- Cons:pickpocket, very warm in summer, traffic in downtown
- In a nutshell:must see stop in Franche-Comté
I'm sorry to say but Besançon (as well as most other bigger towns in Central Europe) is not 100 % safe when it comes to... more travel advice
Many fountains can be found in Besançon. Small ones, big ones, historical and modern ones. Most of them are from the... more travel advice
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