Pesmes, Franche-Comte: tourism & sightseeing
Visit Pesmes (Franche-Comte, France)
The village of Pesmes is situated about 25 kilometres north of Dole and to the west of Besancon, in the countryside of the France-Comte region. On the banks of the River Ognon, Pesmes is listed among the 'most beautiful villages in France'.
The village has had an active history, belonging at various times to the Francs, the Spanish, and the Dukes of Burgundy, before becoming part of France in 1678.
Unusually - and it's no criticism of the village itself - your memories of Pesmes will probably be from outside the village itself! The views of the 16th century houses and the castle on the hill from the other side of the river are undoubtedly the highlight of your visit to Pesmes, so be sure to cross the bridge and follow the river banks a little way in either direction.
The village itself is also interesting with several historical monuments to enjoy and mainly situated between the castle that overlooks the river, the Esplanade des Promenades behind the castle, and the Church of Saint Hilaire at the other end of Grande Rue towards the west of Pesmes. Of course you will also want to explore the side streets of Pesmes that lead off these main routes.
The 12th century Church of Saint-Hilaire is notable for its belltower with a decoratively coloured roof (added in the 18th century after a fire), while inside you can see the 16th century statues of a mausoleum to local dignitaries Jean and Pierre d'Andelot and other decorative chapels.
Also in Pesmes you can see the remains of the medieval castle, two of the original stone gateways into the town and grand townhouses such as the Maison Royale, the Maison Grandvelle, Hotel Mairot and the Hotel Chateaurouillaud.
There are also numerous smaller houses, and lots of smaller architectural features such as small towers, washhouses, fountains and decorative stone door and window surrounds that bear witness to the long history of the village.
Several of the most interesting sites are rather hidden away so we suggest you ask for the village map from the Pesmes Tourist Office to make sure you don't miss anything.
The Pesmes Forges on the river at the eastern end of the village date from the 17th century and were once an important producer of weapons. The forges continued to operate until almost the end of the 20th century, although by that time they were producing smaller implements like garden tools instead of weapons. The group of buildings that constitutes the forges now contain a small museum.
It is also possible to hire a boat to take a trip along the peaceful Ognon River from Pesmes.
Note: photo of Pesmes village and castle is copyright
You can find more local travel ideas in the Franche-Comte guide.
Map of Pesmes and places to visit
Visit near Pesmes with France This Way reviews
Address: Pesmes, Vesoul, Haute-Saone, Franche-Comte, 70140, France || GPS: latitude 47.280556, longitude 5.565556
Plan your visit to Pesmes, Franche-Comte
Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby
- Jardin du château du Talmay: remarkable garden (13km)
- Parc de l'Etang: remarkable garden (17km)
- Jardin à la Faulx: remarkable garden (22km)
- Dole: secteur sauvegarde (22km)
- Château d'Arcelot: remarkable garden (31km)
- Royal Saltworks of Arc-et-Senans: heritage site (32km)
The French version of this page is at Pesmes (Francais)