Paris, France is considered as the love capital of the world but do you know that aside from the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, Arch de Triomphe, Musee d’Orsay and the Versailles Palace, there are hidden gems that only a few visitors know about? Below are just some of the hidden gems that are just waiting to be discovered.
Neuf-Brisach – Citadel of the Sun King – UNESCO World Heritage
Just 16km southeast of Colmar, visitors can check out one of the less known UNESCO World Heritage site – the Neuf-Brisach. The town was fortified under the command of King Louis XIV to prevent it from falling into the enemy’s hands. Red sandstones was used in constructing the perfect octagon walls. The design is perfectly visible above ground and is considered as Vauban’s masterpiece.
Chateau de Chambord – Jewel of the French Renaissance
Built in 1519, the Chateau serves as a hunting lodge and a retreat for King Frances I. The Chateau boasts of 440 rooms and a large stable that can accommodate one thousand two hundred horses as well as the largest enclosed park in Europe with 5,440 hectares of hunting land. A day at the Chateau will not be complete without horse and carriage rides, walking trails and cycle paths.
Le Mont Saint Michel – UNESCO World Heritage
Another UNESCO World Heritage site that is now gaining popularity is the Le Mont St. Michel; it houses an abbey, monastery, a great hall and small shops below. The abbey was used as a prison because of its strategic location wherein the low tide shows the pathway towards the island and during the high tide hides it in turn. Visiting the abbey will allow visitors to see the statue of the Archangel Michael slaying a dragon. Aside from the cloister and refectory, visitors can also explore the museum as well as the shops on the island’s main street.
Carcassonne, Longeduc – Medieval Fortress
Visiting France is never complete without visiting the Carcassonne in Longeduc. The fortified fortress is one of the best examples of a fortified medieval town. Inside Carcassonne, travelers will find the cathedral dedicated to St. Celse and St. Nazaire. Visitors can enter the Chateau Comtal or the keep by paying a fee. One would be able to see the rooms as well as part of the battlement area. From the left bank, one would also be able to visit the Ville Basse which was built during the 13th century which today houses hotels as well as shops and markets.