Just a couple of hours North on a train ride from Rome one can explore the less discovered hills… more>>
Reims is a beautiful city located 80 miles from Paris. There is a lot of history, architecture, wine tradition and excellent culinary experiences coming together here. It is amazing to know that kings were crowned in Reims for more than one thousand years.
It is not difficult to get to Reims from Paris, there are several fast trains departing the city center and Charles de Gaulle airport. From the main international airport in Paris it only takes around a half hour, the secret is to buy the ticket online at least three weeks ahead and one can find really good deals. The train station for the fast trains is located just outside the main city in Reims but there are frequent connections with the city center using other trains or the public bus that costs only one Euro per ride. It is possible to catch a regular train all the way from Paris, but it can take as long as two hours and is not always cheaper. Probably the most appealing option is to drive, it is in this way that one can really enjoy the beauty of the countryside, the little towns along the way and the vineyards that has make the region -on which Reims is the main city- so famous around the world.
Reims is not a big city, in fact it is possible to walk almost anywhere. The first place to see is Notre Dame Cathedral, this is an impressive Gothic Cathedral, with breathtaking stained glass windows, it is here where many of the monarchs were crowned.
Around the cathedral one can take a stroll in the beautifully manicured gardens. The main street that leads to the square in front of the Cathedral is packed with the typical souvenir stores, and some quite nice Champagne stores where one can buy the famous celebrative drink normally for the same price that one finds in any of the Vineyards, if the idea is to score a deal the best thing is to head to one of the supermarkets where prices are much lower. Some of the most famous restaurants are as well along that main street called Rue Rockefeller, but they come with a high price tag, something that is good to keep in mind for foodies is that this city is proud to be home of several Michelin star restaurants, but if one wants to enjoy a more affordable meal it is good to look for the little local bistros or cafes away from the tourist spots.
The Palace of Thau is the ancient Episcopal palace with a beautiful chapel dating from the 13th century. Many of the old buildings of the city were destroyed during the war and reconstructed after that.
St Remi Basilica is another must see when visiting Reims, it is a historical Romanesque church, with a beautiful interior. It is a UNESCO world heritage site.
There are several Museums in the city and one of the favorites of visitors is the Museum of Art that houses excellent collections, it is located in an ancient abbey.
Reims is such a nice city, that especially during spring and summer the best thing is just to wonder around and just end the day with a great Champagne, the other good thing is that Reims is never as crowded as Paris is, but it always has something new going on.