Top 8 Things To Do In Dijon, France

Joyce
Joyce 
Updated

An effervescent city, Dijon is as pensive as any other place in France. Here, people will be able to witness the sun and its slow setting, how the yellow light during afternoons faintly glows on the limestone buildings that adorn much of the architecture in this city. It is a place where meals and glasses of wine can be enjoyed in peace outside eateries that bask in the incessant laughter and conversations of people from across the world. If you are thinking of paying a visit to this ethereal city, scroll down to see some of the things to do in Dijon, France.

1. Marvel at the Palace of the Dukes of Burgundy

Palais des ducs de Bourgogne à Dijon
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Provence13 used under CC BY-SA 3.0

If you are an architecture connoisseur, the French and English tour will certainly delight your interest. The experience, which is a night tour of Dijon, will allow you to further observe the city center and all of its lit monuments in the evening. It is a 1.5-hour walking tour led by a French-and English-speaking guide. Here, it is inevitable not to fill your camera with pictures of some of Dijon’s iconic architecture while in awe of the beautifully illuminated features of the streets surrounding the prehistoric residence of the Dukes of Burgundy and the Church of Notre Dame.

Palace of the Dukes of Burgundy

Address: 1 Place de la Libération, 21000 Dijon, France

Website: Palace of the Dukes of Burgundy

Opening hours: Wed - Mon: 9am - 6pm (closed on Tue)

2. Discover the Cathédrale Saint-Bénigne of Dijon

things to do in dijon france | discover the cathédrale saint-bénigne of dijon

An architectural piece of pure beauty, the Cathédrale Saint-Bénigne of Dijon was built between the 1280 and 1325 commonly recognized as the Dijon Cathedral. The Gothic and Romanesque structure has obtained a reputation for capturing the hearts of those who are within its parameters. It’s tall spires that adorn the façade have become a truly iconic image of the city. Locals and tourists alike always make sure not to miss out on the museum placed next to the Cathedral that houses the tomb of Philip the Good, the Duke of Burgundy from 1419 to 1467. Apart from this historical wonder, what continues to attract people are the intricate carvings inside the Cathedral.

Cathédrale Saint-Bénigne of Dijon

Address: Pl. Saint Bénigne, 21000 Dijon, France

Website: Cathédrale Saint-Bénigne of Dijon

Opening hours: 9am - 12pm; 2pm - 6pm (daily)

3. Breathe fresh air at the lush Botanical Garden of Arquebuse


Known as the Jardin Botanique de l’Arquebuse in the local tongue, the Botanical Garden also performs as an arboretum and park. The place boasts of walking paths, streams, ponds, and play areas for children. Created in the liking of the traditional 19th-century botanical gardens, it allows visitors to learn more about the foreign species being taken care of on the site. There is also a natural history museum that displays exhibitions including that of the animal kingdom. People are encouraged to visit during early hours, to have time left for the viewing of the Anatidae frolic on the Raines collection.

Botanical Garden of Arquebuse

Address: 1 Avenue Albert 1er, 21000 Dijon, France

Website: Botanical Garden of Arquebuse

Opening hours: 9am - 6pm (daily)

4. Explore the regional history at Museum of Burgundian Life


The Museum of Burgundian Life is filled with an expansive ethnological collection that was compiled by Perrin de Puycousin during the late 19th century. It contains several exhibitions created for furniture, costumes, domestic equipment, and other objects rooted in the ceremonies and traditions of Burgundy. Here, there is an upper floor that impressively gives an accurate reconstruction of a street scene along with old shops. The museum also reveals to its visitors the irreplaceable beauty of 17th-century ceramics like plates, pitches, mustard jars, dishes, and among others. After participating in a tour around the place, make sure to visit the library-boutique get yourself a lovely memento.

Museum of Burgundian Life

Address: 17 Rue Sainte-Anne, 21000 Dijon, France

Website: Museum of Burgundian Life

Opening hours: Wed - Mon: 9.30am - 12.30pm; 2pm - 6pm (closed on Tue)

5. Pay homage to Thomas Jefferson at the St. William’s Gate

Porte Guillaume (Dijon)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Gzen92 used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Believed to be one of the best places to visit in the entire reach of Dijon, St. William’s Gate is a commemorative arch situated in the west entrance of the city. In close distance to the Place Darcy, the monument has received uncountable cameos in the area of popular cinema, thus, making it an iconic symbol of the French narrative. A lot of people flock the area since it significantly marks the beginning of old Dijon. Formerly located inside the walls, the arch flaunts its beautiful silhouette of great scale. Named after William of Volpiano, the examiner of the Reformation of Abbey in the 15th century, St. William’s Gate is a historical site that cannot be missed.

St. William’s Gate

Address: St. William’s Gate, Place Darcy, Dijon, France

Opening hours: 9am - 10pm (daily)

6. Tour the old and beautiful Rue Des Forges


Once again, a beautiful place with impressive architecture, the Rue Des Forges is perfect for quiet saunters while basking in the picturesque views of Dijon. Aside from the interesting structures and shops, you can explore, the old-fashioned carousel next to the fountain is a highlight you should take a look at. When here, make sure to stop by at the Croque Monsieur or famed Moutarde Maille. Rue Des Forges is a place perfect for couples, as it adopts an intimate atmosphere in the evening, aglow from the lights of the buildings adorning it.

Rue Des Forges

Address: 21000 Dijon, France

Website: Rue Des Forges

Opening hours: 24/7

7. Go stargazing at the Hubert Curien Planetarium


The Hubert Curien Planetarium invites people of all ages to partake in a mesmerizing escape to the starts. The place takes its name from the physicist of the Ariane rocket. Here, you can enjoy one of the smartly staged, introductory shows that feature the wonders of astronomy. A place of unending knowledge and learning, the Hubert Curien Planetarium also offers its visitors shows covering the Earth’s natural phenomena like the plate tectonics and the continental drift.

Hubert Curien Planetarium

Address: 14 Rue Jehan de Marville, 21000 Dijon, France

Website: Hubert Curien Planetarium

Opening hours: Mon, Wed - Fri: 9am - 12pm; 2pm - 6pm; Sun: 2pm - 6pm (closed on Tue & Sat)

8. Witness the Well of Moses, a masterpiece by Claus Sluter (from USD 12.08)

things to do in dijon france | witness the well of moses, a masterpiece by claus sluter

This masterpiece crafted and perfected by the Dutch artist Claus Sluter is a previous medieval sculpture placed in the center of the earlier large cloister of the Charterhouse of Champmol. Considered one of the rare remaining elements of the medieval monastery, the Well of Moses is set next to the other six dramatically life-like statues of prophets also done by Sluter. This marvelous experience will allow you to admire the statue from a close distance in the ancient monastery of Champmol. It definitely deserves a spot on your list of places to visit in Dijon. If you are a first-timer, then you get the benefit of using any of the French, English, and German brochures available on the site.

Dijon: Ticket for the Well of Moses

Duration: 30 minute

7 reviews

Vibrant activities are what makes Dijon so special

Because of Dijon’s desire to preserve and restore a lot of its edifices and cultural sites, it has obtained a place in the UNESCO World Heritage Site. If by any chance, you decide to lengthen your stay, make sure to explore every nook and cranny of the city, where the life is just as wonderful as those that enliven these famed spots. Shake Dijon’s hand, take a walk with it, slowly get to know it, and just simply wallow in the beauty of all its moments.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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Joyce Gonzales has always had the case of wanderlust. She was a former financial analyst who took a leap of faith and started writing about her travels. She is intrigued by the existence of...Read more

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