Moret-sur-Loing, Paris: tourism & sightseeing
Visit Moret-sur-Loing (Paris, France)
Moret-sur-Loing is situated at the south-east corner of the extensive forest that surrounds the Chateau de Fontainebleau, and 65 kilometres south-east of Paris. Although it is only a few kilometres south of the Seine, it is actually a tributary of this river called the Loing that passes through the centre of the town.
France This Way comment: this historic town is perhaps rather overlooked by tourists because of these famous neighbours, however Moret-sur-Loing should be on your list of places to visit in the region as it has a pleasant historic centre with some monuments of interest.
It is easy to get your bearings in Moret-sur-Loing: the town centre is quite small and centred around the church, and along the Rue Grande that between the two principal towers in the town, to the west of the old bridge across the river.
Start your visit in the Place Samois at the western end of Grande Rue. Parking is available in the square, and the Moret-sur-Loing Tourist Office is on one side. You can also see a bust of the artist Alfred Sisley.
Enthusiasts of impressionist art will recall that Alfred Sisley, a renowned English painter who spent most of his life painting in France, spent the last 10 years of his life here and painted numerous paintings of the town and surrounding region. Unfortunately he was completely unrecognised during his lifetime and died in poverty.
On the eastern side of the Place Samois is the Porte de Samois, one of the imposing medieval towers that once defended the old town: pass through the arch to enter Grande Rue.
Walking along the Grande Rue and in some of the side streets you will notice several half-timbered houses (as well as quite a few less interesting houses and shops), and you can also see the intricate stonework in the courtyard of the town hall, dating from the renaissance period: don't miss this, it is a very impressive work of architecture, dating from 1527 and called the Gallery of Francois 1.
The Maison Recollet, a medieval house with a balcony in the Place de l'Hotel de Ville, is another pretty medieval house.
At the far end of the Grande Rue you pass under the Porte de Bourgogne, the other grand stone tower and slightly less ornate than the first, and reach the bridge cross the Loing river. Walk out across the bridge for a nice view of the town and riverbanks, and along the river itself. There is also a footpath along the riverbank that you can follow.
Although it is these two towers that dominate the centre of Moret-sur-Loing, try to imagine the town as it was a few hundred years ago when it had 20 towers and more than a kilometre of fortified walls! Small parts of these can still be seen in the town.
Continue your visit at the Church of Notre-Dame. The most important historic monument in Moret-sur-Loing, the church was built between the 12th and 15th centuries, and consecrated by Thomas Becket. The gothic style facade of the church is one of the best in the region, and includes a great deal of intricate stonework around the doorway.
Close to here you can also see the donjon, all that remains of the medieval castle around which the town originally developed, and built in the 12th century.
There are also some interesting medieval houses to be seen in the square around the church, around the end of Rue de Grez, and elsewhere in the streets around the town centre.
Among the other attractions in the town are two small museums:
- the Museum of Barley Sugar Sweets (Musée du Sucre d'orge) commemorating the sweets that have been made in the town to a secret recipe for hundreds of years. This museum is in the attractive house in the river next to the bridge, and claims to have the oldest sweet in France in its collection!
- the Bike Museum, which displays bicycles and related items at various stages from their invention to the current day.
If you are visiting Moret-sur-Loing during the summer months we suggest you try and visit on a Saturday evening, when you will be treated to the popular 'Sound and Light' festival, during which the music and lighting provide the perfect backdrop to remind us of the history of the town.
Another very enjoyable activity is to take a boat trip along the quiet river. Most visitors to Moret-sur-Loing will also visit Fontainebleau and enjoy a walk in the Fontainebleau forest.
You can find more local travel ideas in the Paris guide.
Map of Moret-sur-Loing and places to visit
Visit near Moret-sur-Loing with France This Way reviews
Moret-sur-Loing is classified as a recommended detour town (plus beau detour)
Address: Moret-sur-Loing, Fontainebleau, Seine-et-Marne, Paris, 77250, France || GPS: latitude 48.3744, longitude 2.815
Plan your visit to Moret-sur-Loing, Paris
Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby
- Fontainebleau Palace: heritage site (9km)
- Domaine national de Fontainebleau: remarkable garden (9km)
- Abbaye du Lys (Dammarie-les-Lys): religious monument (20km)
- Melun: ville fleurie 4* (22km)
- Le Mee-sur-Seine: ville fleurie 4* (22km)
- Parc du château de Vaux-le-Vicomte: remarkable garden (23km)
- Gatinais Francais: regional natural parc (26km)
- Parc du château de Courances: remarkable garden (27km)
- Eglises de Saint Loup (Saint-Loup-de-Naud): religious monument (34km)
Market days in Moret-sur-Loing, France
Regular market(s) are held in Moret-sur-Loing each Tuesday. (Markets are held in the morning unless stated.)
The French version of this page is at Moret-sur-Loing (Francais)