Champagne Country: Places to Explore

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  • Amiens

    Although Amiens showcases some pretty brazen postwar reconstruction, epitomized by Auguste Perret's 340-foot Tour Perret (a soaring concrete stump by the train station), the city is well worth...

  • Beauvais

    Beauvais and its neighbor Amiens have been rivals since the 13th century, when they locked horns over who could build the bigger cathedral. Beauvais lost—gloriously.

  • Châlons-en-Champagne

    The administrative capital of the Marne and the Champagne region is famous for its Blanc de Blancs vineyards. The town center, crisscrossed with canals and streams, is a charming mix of...

  • Château-Thierry

    Château-Thierry is best known as the birthplace of the French fabulist Jean de La Fontaine (1621–95). Built along the Marne River beneath the ruins of a hilltop castle that dates from the time...

  • Épernay

    Although Reims loudly proclaims itself to be the last word in Champagne production, Épernay—on the south bank of the Marne—is really the center of the bubbly drink's spirit. It was here in...

  • Laon

    Thanks to its awe-inducing hilltop site and the forest of towers sprouting from its ancient cathedral, lofty Laon basks in the title of the "Crowned Mountain." The medieval ramparts, virtually...

  • L'Épine

    Legend has it that in the Middle Ages some shepherds herding their flock down from pasture found a statue of the Virgin in a burning thorn bush (épine). Their discovery triggered the building of...

  • Reims

    Behind a facade of austerity, Champagne’s largest city remains one of France's richest tourist sites, thanks especially to the fact that it sparkles with some of the biggest names in Champagne...

  • Soissons

    Although this was a major city in medieval times, the ravages of the French Revolution and World War I left little of it intact. Nowadays only the magnificent cathedral and the evocative ruins of...

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