While discovering a town, the first thing you do is to familiarise yourself, step by step, street by street. Strolling is the best way to discover the old Mâcon which is a mosaic where history and men have left their scattered touch, discreet but living.
The walk can start, near the tourist office, with the 18th century town hall, with its imposing façade on the banks of the Saône River. In Rue Carnot, opposite the town hall, the Saint-Pierre church built in the 19th century shows many typical features of Neo-romanesque art. A bit further on, there is the Soufflot Residence, with its Saint-Vincent-de-Paul chapel and its « tour » for abandoned children.
Coming back to the North, you go through the picturesque « Place aux herbes » where the « Maison de Bois » (the wooden house) stands adorned with saucy sculptures. Carrying on towards the Saône, you come across the Saint-Laurent Bridge. It was built in the 11th century and is the real talisman of the town. It was altered several times in the courses of the centuries. A few minutes from there, you reach the bottom of the unequal towers of the old Saint-Vincent, which are the vestiges of the ancient church-cathedral.
Walking along the little streets, the stroller will discover the Ursulines Museum, which displays numerous accounts on the history of the town, the residential house of the de Lamartine family, Rue Beauderon de Senecé, then on either side of the « Square de la Paix », the Saint-Vincent church erected under Napoleon 1st and the General Hospital that owes its dome to Soufflot. Going down towards the Saône, you may admire the Regency style Senecé Residence.
Furthermore, during his walk, the stroller will not fail to appreciate all the little and big things that make Mâcon a town deserving special attention.
From Matisco to nowadays... The foundation of the antic Matisco goes back to the 1st century BC. Soon, the city became a communication crossroads. Boarder line between the French Kingdom and the Holy Roman Empire between 843 and 1600, Mâcon thrives thanks to the customs duties. In 1790, Mâcon becomes the administrative centre of Saone-et-Loire, and has given the world one of its well-known children: Alphonse de Lamartine (Poet and politician). Active centre of the Resistance during World War II, Mâcon became the first town of the unoccupied zone between Paris and Lyon.
The urban and architectural richness of Mâcon bears witness to a past particularly rich in encounters. Explore the city, its museums and historical sites.
Not to forget, during your walk, the museums tracing the history of yesteryear Mâcon…
L’Hôtel de Senecé est une des rares demeures privées de Mâcon qui ouvre ses portes au public : visiter ses salons, sa bibliothèque, son ancienne cuisine, ses escaliers et ses couloirs dérobés vous permettra de mieux comprendre la vie au 18e siècle. Vous découvrirez aussi son architecture ainsi que la vie des hommes et des femmes qui ont fait ses quatre siècles d'histoire.
Visites guidées le mardi à 10h et à 15h (6 €)
6 € ➜
le mardi à 10h et à 15h
Adresse : 41 rue Sigorgne - Hôtel Senecé 71000 Mâcon Site Web : www.academiedemacon.fr Téléphone : 09 75 60 45 35
The apothecary shop At the ground floor of the Hotel-Dieu hospital, build on Soufflot’s plans after 1761, the apothecary shop, or “sale-room”, has preserved its panelling of the XVIIIth century and the richness of its collection of chemistry pots: “albarelli”, “chevrettes” and others pills boxes issued from a local ceramics production.
In the 19th century, the town of Mâcon thought of building a new church. This is how, according to the plans of the architect Berthier, disciple of Viollet le Duc, the Saint-Pierre church was born in the year 1860 in the town hall area. The Romanesque style building presents a façade with three floors. Three portals of a raised semicircular style, (which is characteristic of the monument and be found in all the arcades and openings), with tympanums adorned with stone bas-relief, give access to the interior. Dominated by two steeples of a rare elegance, covered with a stone spire, the whole building is outstanding. Things to see inside the church : Numerous chapels, frescos, communion tables, high altar, pulpit with five sides and two stairs, rose windows, organs. Three pieces of work which are covered by preservation order. Alter bas-relief in white marble of the chapel Notre-Dame-de-Lorette, sculpted by Perrache, an artist from Lyon at the end of the 18th century.
Built between 1490 and 1510, the Wooden House is without doubt the oldest house in Mâcon, and certainly the most famous. Its façade, entirely built in wood, is decorated with a multitude of saucy statuettes. These are characters with grimacing men and monkey’s masks, some standing, some sitting, winged, naked or dressed but sometimes only with a scarf or a bonnet. Some of their stretched arms alternatively hold the head or the tail of a fantasy or real animal. The Wooden House was compared by the Goncourt brothers with an immense sideboard that the inhabitants of Mâcon should only give a sidelong look to because of the larger-than-life sculptures that ornate its walls.
As a Place of Remembrance this museum has assembled testimonials of military conflicts from 1870 to the present day. The 1870 War, the French Memorial Association, the Great War of 1914-1918, the 1939-1945 War, Indochina, North Africa, overseas missions... Here you will find educational presentations and equally, a place for conservation which from September 2005 welcomes the literacy tests and information about National Service.
Ursulines’ Museum This old convent was built ca. 1675 for the education of young girls, the Ursulines, issued from the middle-class. After the French Revolution, it was successively used as a prison in 1793 (where Lamartine’s father was incarcerated), a military barrack (1796-1929) and as a “House of the People” before it became the Ursulines’ museum in 1968. The department of archaeology presents the excavations lead in our city from Prehistory to Gallo-roman and medieval periods. The first floor offers an overview of the life of Mâcon, the work in the vineyard, the activities linked to the river Saône and a special space devoted to Lamartine. Finally, the second floor’s rooms present a collection of the artistic creation of the late five centuries.
3 € ➜
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Amis des mus
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moins de 18 ans
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Scolaires / Etudiant
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Scolaires et enseignants accompagnateurs
Visite guidée adulte individuel
2.5 € ➜
Visite guidée enfant individuel
2.5 € ➜
Adresse : 5 rue des Ursulines 71000 Mâcon Complément adresse : Accessible aux personnes à mobilité réduite au 5 r. Préfecture Téléphone : 03 85 39 90 38 Site Web : www.macon.fr Mail : email@example.com
Even before Mâcon existed, the Saône could be crossed via a ford. The Roman legions built a wooden bridge during the Gaul conquest, and it was only in the 11th century that a stone bridge was constructed; it only consisted of six arches and was fortified as early as 1223. Significant work was also carried out until 1550. The extension of the bridge seems to date back to this time although the exact number of arches in the 16th century is not known. During the wars of religion, it went through tragic times with Guillaume de Saint-Point, the governor of Mâcon, throwing the Huguenots The Saint-Laurent Bridge was among the few bridges of the region that were not destroyed during the Second World War. Since this time its appearance has not changed and it has twelve arches.
The archaeological site of Saint-Clément Recent excavations offer the visitors to follow the transformations of that church located in the old township of Saint-Clément, in the surroundings of Mâcon. Built as a funeral basilica in the VIth century, it gradually became a liturgical centre until the XIXth century.
Near the old oppidum of Mâcon, the two towers and the narthex constitute the only remnants of the former cathedral whose tympanum is an exceptional masterpiece of the Roman period. Inside the building, a model, plans and architectural elements permit to reconstitute the evolution of the building from the XIth to the XVth century.
Extend your summer with charming week-ends. Whether you are looking for an exciting break to get away from it all or a leisurely opportunity to sample some of our best wines, wine tourism in the Mâcon area of southern Burgundy (France) offers you so much to see and do.
You can choose between a cool, relaxing cruise down the river Saône, a chance to explore the region’s vineyards (Saint-Véran, Pouilly Fuissé, Viré Clessé or the Mâcon Villages), sports and leisure activities to suit everyone, all the fun of discovering the many and varied heritage sites in our wine producing villages, the Roche de Solutré, listed as a “Grand Site de France” tourist site, not forgetting the delicious meals waiting to be enjoyed in our gourmet restaurants.
Your family certainly won’t go away disappointed. You can trust the Mâcon Tourist Office to prepare your holiday or your stay in the region on the way to the Alps or the Mediterranean.