Saulieu, Burgundy: tourism & sightseeing

Photo of Saulieu in Cote d'Or

Visit Saulieu (Burgundy, France)

MAP & PLACES TO VISIT

Saulieu is a small town in the Cote-d'Or department of Burgundy, south of Semur-en-Auxois.

Explore Saulieu

You will be in the region because you are exploring the natural environment of the Morvan regional natural park, and although Saulieu is quite a minor destination it merits a visit and has some notable monuments to discover. Your visit will undoubtedly start with the most important of these monuments, the basilica.

Colourful houses in Saulieu village centre

Saint-Andoche Basilica of Saulieu

The 12th century basilica, constructed in the romanesque style, is the centre-piece for the town and has recently been renovated. Built on the site of an even earlier abbey dating back to the 8th century, it is a substantial church, unusually with towers of unequal height either side of the main facade. In front of the basilica you can see the Fountain Saint-Andoche.

The basilica entrance is one of the highlights, with its ornate carvings and stone columns. Inside Saulieu basilica pay particular attention to the carvings of the capitals (the decorated carved stones at the top of the supporting columns) as well as the wooden carvings in the stalls and the painted medieval statues.

Note: the original cathedral structure was significantly larger than the one we see today, but a part was destroyed by the English when they invaded the town during the Hundred Years War in 1359.

Other sights in Saulieu

The pretty little church and cemetery at the church of Saint-Saturnin (southern end of Saulieu) also deserves a visit. You will immediately notice the pointed tower on the church, originally built in the 14th century but modified several times since.

Taking a stroll around Saulieu old town you will also come across various picturesque streets and half-timbered buildings, a couple of interesting statues, and the 18th century town hall.

There is also a museum in Saulieu celebrating the works of French animal sculptor Francois Pompon, as well as a statue of a bull by he artist in the town centre. Pompon (1855-1933) was a one time apprentice of Auguste Rodin.

Church of Saint-Saturnin in Saulieu

Attractions nearby

The most important role for Saulieu is as a base for exploring the Morvan Natural Park. North of Saulieu you will certainly want to explore Semur-en-Auxois, one of our favourite historic towns in Burgundy.

You can find more local travel ideas in the Cote d'Or guide and the Burgundy guide.

See also:

Map of Saulieu and places to visit

Visit near Saulieu with France This Way reviews

... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Cote d'Or

Address: Saulieu, Montbard, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, 21210, France || GPS: latitude 47.28, longitude 4.2322

Plan your visit to Saulieu, Burgundy

Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby

  • Basilique de Saint Andoche (Saulieu): religious monument
  • Parc de Saint-Léger: remarkable garden (7km)
  • Jardin de la Chaux: remarkable garden (10km)
  • Morvan: regional natural parc (10km)
  • Potager du château de Lantilly: remarkable garden (31km)
  • Flavigny: most beautiful village (34km)
  • Alesia: grand site of france (35km)
  • Siège d'Alésia: site of natural beauty (35km)

Market days in Saulieu, France

Regular market(s) are held in Saulieu each Saturday. (Markets are held in the morning unless stated.)

The French version of this page is at Saulieu (Francais)