Nivernais Canal & cycle route


Contact and Access

Office de Tourisme entre Cure et Yonne
Halte nautique de Bazarnes
Cidex 501
89460 Cravant
Tel +33 (0)3 86 81 54 26

And if you venture a little further afield…

Chablis, vineyards and cellars

Nicknamed the Golden Gate of Burgundy, Chablis is the name of an internationally renowned white wine, produced by a vineyard a few kilometres east of Auxerre; it is one of Burgundy's most prestigious wines.

Chablis is a city rich in history with its Saint-Martin collegiate church, the 15th century Obédiencerie and chevet, the hôtel-Dieu or hospice and old town gates etc.

A beautiful village where you can get to taste andouillette sausages, a local speciality, and ham in a Chablis-based sauce, as well as enjoy some essential wine-tasting in the wine cellars of Chablis, accompanied by some lovely Duché biscuits. For further information: Chablis Tourist Office

Vézelay, the eternal hill

Listed as a world heritage site by UNESCO

It was one of the four starting points for pilgrimages to Santiago de Compostella. The year's high point is the 22nd July, the feast day of Saint Mary-Magdalena.

Vézelay basilica, built in the 12th century was saved from ruin during the 19th century and restored by Viollet-le-Duc.

The chancel is gothic and the nave, Roman. The variety of coloured stone and rich iconography of the sculpted capitals make this a magical place particularly during summer or winter solstice.

Vézelay village has kept its cellars which, in the past, were used to provide pilgrims with modest accommodation. Vézelay vineyards have regained its planting rights and some areas are attracting considerable attention.

The village boasts a strong cultural tradition. In the summer, the basilica stages wonderful concerts and lovely exhibitions are held in the Jules Roy house, the Zervos museum and the Gothic hall etc.

For further information, please visit the web site: Vezelay Tourist Office

Avallon, gateway town to The Morvan.

Avallon is a granite city, surrounded by ramparts, from where you can admire the terraced gardens, typical of the town.

This charming city, which is a dynamic cultural centre, boasts a rich medieval heritage with lots of museums. The recently restored Maison des Sires de Domecy, the former collegiate church, Saint Lazare, the historic district (watch towers and houses with corbelled constructions) and the Clock Tower.

Avallon is at the gateway to The Morvan, an area known for its amazing landscapes both in terms of its flora - particularly fir trees which are an important economic resource - as well as its rivers and lakes where you can practise water sports and other activities.

You can enter the Park via the winding Cousin valley, below the town, famous for its windmills which today have been converted to hotels.

Avallon, gateway town to The Morvan: a green island, straddling four departments, where you can commune with nature and recharge your batteries! For further information, contact: Avallon Tourist Office

Auxerre, Saint Germain Abbey

Auxerre is a town of art and history and its Abbey, which is more than one thousand years old, has been wonderfully, and very successfully restored. Saint-Etienne cathedral, which is nearby, is also situated on the banks of the Yonne.

The oldest painted murals in France adorn the walls of the 9th century Carolingian crypt. Saint Germain Abbey was an important pilgrim destination and a renowned cultural centre throughout Europe. Today it is home to the Archeology Museum where 15 centuries of history have been carefully preserved. Visitors can learn all about the different periods by reading the explanations on the various archeological digs.

We can learn the entire history of Auxerre from these remains.

At the foot of the museum is La Marine district with its superb half-timbered, Medieval houses. For further information: Auxerre and Auxerrois Tourist Office

Guédelon, Medieval construction project in Puisaye

The site of a fortified castle currently being reconstructed using old methods and techniques: the expertise acquired in the process is shared with the public.

Saint-Fargeau, in the same region, stages impressive, historical shows in its castle: more than 500 cavalrymen perform each weekend. For further information: Saint Fargeau Tourist Office

The Tonnerrois châteaux

The following châteaux are open to the public: the must-see Ancy le Franc with its perfectly symmetrical courtyard, restored paintings and furniture.

Maulnes, the pearl of le Tonnerrois which, with its light well, resembles Chambord in terms of design. A small gem, currently being restored.

Tanlay, a majestic building in lovely grounds, is the third must-see château in Le Tonnerrois. All are built in the Renaissance style. For further information: Ancy le Franc and Tonnerre Tourist Office

Picturesque villages

Some Yonne villages, such as Vézelay or Chablis, are known worldwide for their name alone; others are known for their charm or popularity such as Noyers sur Serein, one of the settings for the film La Grande Vadrouille Noyers sur Serein has the largest number of old houses in the department. Explore this charming village on foot and discover, at each turn, behind every house, one or more sculptures.

Another village that's worth making a detour to is Montreal, next to Avallon.

The collegiate church, at the top of the village, boasts remarkable wood carvings, which are often photographed as an example of Burgundy woodwork.

The village is richly adorned and well preserved, as is Druyes Les Belles Fontaines, with its old church (south of Auxerre towards la Puisaye).

Vézelay, the eternal hill