Wednesday, September 5, 2018

My Weekend in Burgundy, France

Another week in France and another adventure!


Banana Republic trench coat | Galleries Lafayette scarf | J Crew Factory blue tassel earrings

After driving miles through farm land and counting more cows than I have fingers and toes, our first stop was at l’Abbaye de Fontenay in Côte-d’Or. It was extremely cold and rainy while we toured the ancient monastery, which was founded in 1118 par Saint Bernard.
Our class last week was all about Roman architecture, so this abbey had Roman architecture in the church and in the cloisters.

H&M black and white blouse | American Eagle high waisted jeggings in TALL | J Crew Factory blue tassel earrings | RayBan pink mirrored aviators | Sperry classic boat shoes

Vézelay was another gorgeous church. The architecture was amazing and the views from the church were breathtaking. We had a Brother from the église (church) give us a tour. He spoke very nice slow French. I learned that there are two fronts to the church because after they got more money they built a bigger church and expanded the front of the church. Above the entranceway there is a stone, le tympan, carved with Jesus in the middle with large hands and then next to him are his apostles. 
The heart of the church is in the Carolingian style and the rest of the church used to be Roman style before it burned down and was rebuilt in the gothic style.
All the times I have gone into beautiful cathedrals or basilicas since I have been in France, I have started to tear up. This time was no different. This basilica had a relic of Saint Mary Madeline in the basement. Next to the relic was little love notes and prayers to the Saint and it made me very emotional.
I cheered myself up a bit by walking next to the church, in the little garden for a panoramic view of the mountains and vineyards around Vézelay.

After more windy and nauseating roads like in Tuscany (read HERE to see my adventure in Tuscany) we made it to the tiny city of Autun. It is an old fortified city. Our hotel, Hotel les Ursulines was actually on the fortified city wall.
We had a beautiful welcome meal in a private room in the hotel. We started off with escargot with boeuf Bourgogne and fondant/chocolate lava cake for desert. This was probably one of the best meals I have so far in France besides the duck risotto in Provence (click HERE to read about my trip to Provence). The 17 of us (14 students plus our bus driver, professor and retired professor from Wake) all sat at one big table and laughed all night long. It really felt like one big happy Wake Forest family.

The next day we had a tour at the basilica in Autun. It was very similar to the Vézelay basilica because it was a roman style church that then changed into a gothic style church.
After the church tour, my friends and I explored the little fortified city and bumped into a festival and open-air market at the bottom of the hill. We found sandwiches and made a little picnic to bring to Bibarcte.

Bibracte is another ancient fortified city like Autun and was settled by the Galouis.
The museum at the Bibarcte city we went to was all about archeology and how archeologists found this city. There are also the ruins of the Galouis city on the property of the museum. It was so cool to see the ruins, but we spent more time taking photos in the mountains than looking at the ruins! But don’t worry we spent a lot of time in the museum learning all about the city.
To see the ruins, we took our giant coach bus up this tiny road on the mountain and then drove it down… it was very steep and scary.
But we got over it very quickly when we had dinner, even though dinner was absolutely horrible.... so, honestly, we really cheered up when we went back to the carnival and rode around on the bumper cars!

Sunday, we took the Route de Grands Curs to get to the Hospice de Beaune, an ancient hospital and place for the poor in the Burgundy region of France.
The Grand Curs is a long road surrounded by vineyards. It looks exactly like Tuscany.

After learning all about the famous Hospice de Beaune with the famous colored roof, we took a little rest stop at the chateau Clos de Vougeot for some more photos.

Sunday night we moved in with our host families and it was so exciting!
I can’t wait to write another blog post all about my host family and all the things I am learning!



  1. What pretty pictures! The architecture is stunning. I'd love to visit France and a lot of other places in Europe someday soon. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thank you so much! Yes you should! All of France is beautiful!


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