Chalon-sur-Saone travel guide

Photo of Chalon-sur-Saone

Visit Chalon-sur-Saone (Burgundy-Franche-Comté, France)

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The town of Chalon-sur-Sâone is in the Sâone-et-Loire department of central Burgundy, between Dijon and Mâcon.

Exploring Chalon-sur-Saone

France This Way review: an interesting stop-off point as you head south towards Lyon, Chalon-sur-Saône has a pleasant centre with medieval houses and a cathedral that merits exploration.

Start your visit in the large open square in front of the Town Hall (the Place de l'Hôtel de Ville) where you can see various buildings of interest: among the notable buildings in this square are the town hall, the large Church of Saint-Pierre, and the Museum Denon. The Church of Saint-Pierre is interesting for its imposing baroque style facade.

Colombage house in Chalon-sur-Saone town centre

Another imposing religious monument in Chalon-sur-Saone is the Cathedral Saint-Vincent in the Place du Marché, originally the centre of the medieval city. Dating in part from the 11th century the facade of the cathedral was added in the 19th century.

Inside the cathedral you can see some ornate stone arches, medieval frescoes and cloisters.

You can see some attractive half-timbered houses around the edges of the Place du Marché: a good opportunity to sit in the sunshine at a street-side cafe watching the world go by.

Around this square you can explore the large and mostly pedestrianised centre of Chalon-sur-Saone with the old streets containing a very wide range of shops and cafes, and some individual properties of interest such as one or two medieval half-timbered houses, the Palais de Justice and others tucked away up side-streets.


Chalon-sur-Saone Museums

  • One of the inventors of photography, Nicéphore-Niepce, is from Chalon-sur-Saone and in his honour the Museum Nicéphore-Niepce has amassed various cameras and paraphernalia relating to the early days of photography, along with many examples of later photographic equipment and photographs.
  • A second museum in Chalon-sur-Sâone is the Denon Museum, dedicated to local history and traditions and situated in an imposing classical style building on the Place de l'Hôtel-de-Ville.

After exploring the centre of the town you can stroll down to the banks of the Saône to look across the river.

Chalon-sur-Saone also prides itself on its carnivals and outdoor festivals, which include a large carnival in February and a festival of street artists held during July each year - if possible try to time your visit to coincide with one of these events.

Quiet backstreet in Chalon-sur-Saone

Attractions nearby

No visit to Burgundy would be complete without wine-tasting, which you can do in Chalon-sur-Saone itself at the Maison des Vins, who have a large selection of carefully selected local wines to taste (and buy).

To the north of Chalon-sur-Saone you can visit Beaune to see the remarkable medieval hospital, and to the south you can visit Tournus to see the imposing 11th century abbey church.

You can find more travel ideas in the Saone-et-Loire guide and the Burgundy guide.

See also: 

Photos of Chalon-sur-Saone

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Map of Chalon-sur-Saone and places nearby


Visit near Chalon-sur-Saone with France This Way reviews

Tournus abbey

Tournus abbey

The abbey at Tournus is a 12th century abbey in roman style with a cloister, frescoes, rare mosaics and several other highlights

Tournus abbey guide


The Abbey of Saint-Philibert is the highlight in Tournus, but you will also discover several other interesting historic sites

Tournus guide


Beaune is the centre of the famous wine region of the same name, with a visit to th 15th century Hotel-Dieu the highlight in the town

Beaune guide


Quiet now, in the 15th century Brancion was an important regional centre - hence the monuments in the town

Brancion guide


The beautifully decorated and furnished Cormatin Chateau, from the 17th century, is the highlight of your visit

Cormatin guide


A quiet town, Nuits-Saint-Georges wil be part of your tour of the local vineyards and wine chateaux

Nuits-Saint-Georges guide

... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Saone-et-Loire

Tourist classifications for Chalon-sur-Saone

Chalon-sur-Saone has received the following tourist classifications: historical protected town centre' (secteur sauvegardé); listed town of Art and History

Address: Chalon-sur-Saône, Burgundy, 71100, France || GPS coordinates: latitude 46.78, longitude 4.8527

Plan your visit to Chalon-sur-Saone, Saone-et-Loire

Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby

  • Abbatiale eglise de Saint Philibert (Tournus): religious monument (24 km)
  • Tournus: secteur sauvegarde (24 km)
  • Eglise de Saint Pierre de Brancion (Martailly-les-Brancion): religious monument (26 km)
  • Eglise de Saint Martin (Chapaize): religious monument (26 km)
  • Hospices de Beaune (Beaune): religious monument (27 km)
  • Cirque du Bout du Monde: site of natural beauty (27 km)
  • Beaune: ville fleurie 4* (28 km)
  • Confluence - la Seille: site of natural beauty (30 km)
  • Seille (Saône): site of natural beauty (30 km)
  • Eglise de Saint Vincent (Mont-Saint-Vincent): religious monument (33 km)
  • Eglise de Saint Denis (Massy): religious monument (38 km)
  • Parc et jardins du château de Sully: remarkable garden (38 km)

Market days in Chalon-sur-Saone, France

Regular market(s) are held in Chalon-sur-Saone each Wednesday & Thursday & Sunday & Friday. (Markets are held in the morning unless stated.)

The French version of this page is at Chalon-sur-Saone (Francais)