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Festive, rustic or mysterious, enjoy the many facets of Berry


Cathédrale de Bourges M. BergerFantasy lovers, mount your broomsticks! To the north of Bourges, in the hollow of the valley of Sauldre which winds from the hills of Sancerrois to the mysterious Sologne, the museum of Witchcraft lifts the veil on the enigmatic universe of the wizards and witches of Berry. They have left you an entertaining scenography in their wake...Philters, magic potions, wizards, goblins and elves, the history of magic: no secrets will be concealed from you any longer.

In the heart of mysterious Berry, Bourges is a Town of Art and History that reveals itself to you little by little.

Climb the steps of the tower of Saint-Etienne Cathedral, listed as World Heritage by UNESCO.
The view is stunning from up there.

In the old quarters of town, you can admire the Palais Jacques-Coeur, former home of the Finance Minister of King Charles VII.

The streets and squares of the old town boast half-timbered houses, and some of the many townhouses are home to museums.

From May to September, the medieval town can be visited at night during the "Nuits Lumière de Bourges".

A blue light guides you, letting you wander at your own pace and enjoy a magical tour.
Abbaye de Noirlac P. CornetFurther south in a pretty valley, Noirlac Abbey, built in around 1150, remains one of the best-preserved monastic complexes in Europe.

As soon as you walk through the door you can sense the harmony and serenity of the place. As you stroll around the cloisters, the refectory and the dormitories, you can almost see the monks at their daily work. Can you hear their quiet murmurs?

A visit to this masterpiece of Cistercian art gives an insight into the life of the disciples of Saint-Bernard, who built these walls bearing such a deep imprint of spirituality.
Château d'Ainay-le-Vieil P. CornetA few miles away stands the medieval Château d'Ainay-le-Vieil, surrounded by moats and nicknamed "Little Carcassonne".

Go through the postern: behind the ramparts flanked by nine towers, you will find all the charm of a flamboyant gothic style lodge, where Louis XII and Queen Anne of Brittany, Colbert and Marie-Antoinette all stopped off at various times.

In the gardens you will enjoy going through the "chartreuses", those odd rooms with walls but no roof. This technique was dreamed up by the head of the vegetable garden at Versailles to create the right climate for the growth of fruit trees, using the reverberation of the sun's rays.