Besancon tourism and travel guide

Photo of Besancon in Doubs

Visit Besancon: highlights and tourist information

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France This Way comment: The citadel, cathedral and some impressive 16th century townhouses are among the highlights to discover in Besancon

Besancon is situated in the Doubs department and Burgundy-Franche-Comté region.

Important note

This page features a summary of highlights that you might like to explore near Besancon. For detailed visitor information see the Besancon travel guide.

Tourist classifications for Besancon include "national monument", "secteur sauvegarde", "town of art and history" and "zoo or wildlife park". It is unusual for a town to have 4 awards, which indicates how important Besancon is as a tourist destination!

Below you can see some of the places that we have visited and reviewed and can recommend when you are sightseeing close to Besancon in Burgundy-Franche-Comté.

Popular places to visit nearby include Ornans at 17 km and Lods at 27 km.

Besancon, France: places to visit and attractions

Note that all distances below are 'direct' and real driving distances will be greater!

Chateau de Cleron

Chateau de Cleron

Castle at 17 km (direction south-south-east)

The gardens of the Chateau de Cleron can be seen next to...

See Chateau de Cleron guide


at 17 km (direction south-east)

The highlight of your visit to Ornans is the section along the...

See Ornans guide


Most Beautiful Village at 27 km (direction south-east)

Lods is quite small but very pleasant to explore, in particular the...

See Lods guide
Saltworks of Arc-et-Senans

Saltworks of Arc-et-Senans

Heritage Site at 29 km (direction south-west)

The Royal Saltworks at Arc-et-Senans is an entire factory and living spaces...

See Saltworks of Arc-et-Senans guide
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at 29 km (direction south-east)

The small village of Mouthier-Haute-Pierre is well placed to explore the source...

See Mouthier-Haute-Pierre guide


at 35 km (direction south-south-west), in the Jura department

The salt mines at Salins-les-Bains operated from the 13th - 20th century...

See Salins-les-Bains guide


Most Beautiful Village at 35 km (direction west), in the Haute-Saone department

The quaint village of Pesmes is one of the prettiest in Franche-Comté...

See Pesmes guide


at 42 km (direction south-west), in the Jura department

After exploring the old town centre in Arbois you can visit the...

See Arbois guide


at 43 km (direction west-south-west), in the Jura department

The Collegiale Church that dominates the town skyline is the principal attraction...

See Dole guide


at 44 km (direction north-north-east), in the Haute-Saone department

Although lacking major monuments, Vesoul is a pleasant town to visit with...

See Vesoul guide


at 45 km (direction south-east)

Pontarlier is usually visited as part of a trip to enjoy the...

See Pontarlier guide
Chateau de Joux

Chateau de Joux

Castle at 48 km (direction south-east)

The Chateau de Joux is an imposing clifftop castle with a 1000...

See Chateau de Joux guide

... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Doubs

Arrange a visit to Besancon

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Map of places to visit near Besancon


Markets in and near Besancon

Market days in Besancon: weekly market: Wednesday & Tuesday & Thursday all day & Sunday & Saturday & Friday;

  • Besancon: market Wednesday & Tuesday & Thursday all day & Sunday & Saturday & Friday (0km)
  • Levier: market Wednesday (32km)
  • Gray: market Tuesday & Friday (40km)
  • Arbois: market Friday (42km)
  • Dole: market Tuesday & Thursday & Saturday (43km)
  • Vesoul: market Thursday & Saturday (44km)
  • Pontarlier: market Thursday (45km)

More information about Besancon, Franche-Comte

Tourist attractions near Besancon, France

What to do at Besancon? Some places with official tourist classifications and other places of interest to visit nearby that should provide inspiration if you are visiting Besancon.

Heritage sites

Most beautiful villages in France

(see also beautiful French villages)

Recommended detour towns (fr: plus beau détour)

Remarkable gardens

  • Parc de l'Etang (36km)
  • Jardin à la Faulx (43km)
  • Jardin du château du Talmay (46km)

Protected historical centre (fr: secteur sauvegardé)

(see also historical French towns)

Sites of natural beauty

  • Gouffre de Poudrey (21km)
  • Défilé d'Entre-Roches (43km)
  • Gorges de Remonot (44km)
  • Forêt de la Joux (44km)

Towns of Art and history

Villages in bloom 4* (fr: ville fleurie)

  • Moffans-et-Vacheresse (58km)

Geography and distances

Besancon is in the eastern-center of France - it is the prefecture (capital) of the Doubs department (general information: Besancon is 327 kilometres from Paris).

Geographical Information

Commune: Besancon

Canton: Besançon

Arrondissement: Besançon

Department: Doubs

Region: Franche-Comte

New region: Burgundy-Franche-Comté

Postcode: 25000

Distance to Besancon

from Besancon (prefecture): 1 km

from Paris: 327 km

from Calais: 512 km

from Nice: 405 km

from Bordeaux: 575 km

from Strasbourg: 197 km

Getting here

Most visitors drive via Paris (from the north and west) or via Lyon (from the south), or fly into Geneva to the south For driving distances to Besancon from anywhere in France see driving distances and route planner.

We have 16 other places listed as being close (less than kilometres from ): Arguel, Avanne-Aveney, Beure, Chaleze, Chalezeule, Ecole-Valentin, Fontain, La Veze, Larnod, Miserey-Salines, Montfaucon, Morre, Pirey, Pugey, Rancenay and Thise.

This page in French: Visiter Besancon


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