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Pillars of Middle Ages. The Most Interesting UNESCO Sites in France

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Amazing ancient monasteries with valuable artifacts and artwork. The most beautiful medieval fortresses and buildings preserved from ancient times. Wonderful palaces and churches. Of course, France has a lot to surprise sophisticated travelers and big fans of excursions. The country has more than forty historical and natural attractions of world importance, included in the UNESCO lists. Fans of Middle Ages will be offered here to admire the most beautiful architectural structures and enjoy unique natural places, which also have no competitors in its beauty.

Notre-Dame de Chartres Cathedral, France

There is a cathedral in Chartres. It is a religious and architectural monument of world significance. The very first church was built in its place more than one and a half thousand years ago. Miniature churches were constantly being rebuilt. The first cathedral was built in their place in the 10th century. It didn't last long. The wooden cathedral was destroyed by fire in 1020.

Notre-Dame de Chartres Cathedral, France A significant event for the cathedral occurred in 876. A valuable relic was transferred to it. This is the Holy Shroud of the Virgin Mary. The cathedral has repeatedly suffered from fires and other natural disasters. But the shroud miraculously managed to survive each time. The cathedral, which guests of Chartres can see today, began to be built in 1194. It was consecrated in 1260. The cathedral has never been rebuilt in more than 700 years. It has avoided large-scale restorations.

It has been preserved almost completely in the same form as it was on the day of its consecration. The cathedral is considered a real work of Gothic art. It is distinguished not only by its spectacular appearance but also by its luxurious interior design. Its visitors will have the opportunity to admire the most beautiful stained glass windows, as well as see medieval works of art and sculptural compositions of incredible beauty. The stone floor has a very interesting design. An intricate maze is depicted on it.

There are many interesting details of decoration on the facade of the historic cathedral. Sculptural compositions and unusual astronomical clocks adorn it. Many interesting stories are connected with Notre-Dame de Chartres Cathedral. According to one of them, the drawings on the cathedral floor helped mathematicians make outstanding discoveries in the field of gravity tunnel research. Many mathematical puzzles are connected with the cathedral. Researchers were able to find out only recently that the rule of the so-called "golden section" was used in its construction. It is to it that the cathedral owes much of its harmonious and spectacular appearance. Next - Basilica and hill of Vezelay

Basilica and hill of Vezelay, France

Basilica and hill of Vezelay, France A well-known religious landmark is located in the charming Burgundian village of Vezelay. This is the Basilica of Saint Mary Magdalene. It has remained the most important pilgrimage center in Europe for hundreds of years. The very first Benedictine abbey was founded in Vezelay in the 9th century. The very first monastic monasteries were founded on these lands much earlier. But they were destroyed as a result of the invasion of the Arabs and Normans. The abbey became a famous pilgrimage center in the 11th century. It was officially announced that the holy relics of Mary Magdalene were transferred to it during this period. Complete article

Ancient theater and Arc de Triomphe in Orange, France

Ancient theater and Arc de Triomphe in Orange, France The city of Orange is famous all over the world for its ancient sights. A large ancient Roman theater has been preserved here. It is considered one of the largest and most beautiful in the world. The theater is used for musical concerts and theatrical performances after a large-scale reconstruction. It is also a permanent venue for the annual summer festival. It's called "Les Chorégies d'Orange". Complete article

Cistercian Abbey of Fontenay, France

Cistercian Abbey of Fontenay, France The Abbey of Fontenay is the oldest surviving Cistercian monastery in France. It was founded in 1118. Its foundation was due to the rapid growth of the order. The 12th and 13th centuries were the heydays of the monastery. It has been falling into disrepair since the Hundred Years' War. The monastery was sacked by the army of the English conquerors during the war period. It lost almost all of its valuables. Less than 20 monks lived in the dilapidated monastery at the beginning of the 18th century. Complete article

Abbey of Saint-Savin-sur-Gartempe, France

Abbey of Saint-Savin-sur-Gartempe, France Abbey of Saint-Savin-sur-Gartempe became famous throughout the world due to its unique frescoes. They were created by craftsmen in the 11th-12th century. These works of the art managed to preserve their original beauty after hundreds of years. The collection of frescoes is considered the largest in France today. All the murals are made in the Romanesque style. The history of the Abbey of Saint-Savin-sur-Gartempe dates back to the 9th century. The first religious monuments were built on its territory much earlier. Complete article

Pont du Gard, France

Pont du Gard, France Several aqueducts built during the Roman Empire have survived in the world. The highest of them is in France. It's called the Pont du Gard. This ancient bridge is 275 meters long and 47 meters high. The bridge passes over the Gardon River. It is located in a very picturesque natural area. As recent studies have shown, the construction of the aqueduct took place in the 1st century AD. Complete article

Cathedrale Saint-Etienne de Bourges, France

Cathedrale Saint-Etienne de Bourges, France Saint-Étienne Cathedral is also known to many travelers as Bourges Cathedral. Its construction began in the late 12th century. The magnificent Gothic cathedral was consecrated in 1324. The official opening of the cathedral took place in the first half of the 14th century. But construction work continued continuously in it until the 16th century. The main feature of the Gothic cathedral is its unique architecture today. The most beautiful medieval sculptures are preserved here. There are also beautiful stained glass windows here. Connoisseurs of medieval art from all over the world come to admire them. Complete article

Avignon historic center, France

Avignon historic center, France The city of Avignon is famous all over the world for its amazing historical sights. The entire area of its historic district is declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site today. Historical monuments of various periods have been preserved here. The Cathedral of Notre-Dame des Doms d'Avignon is considered the most famous among them. It was built in the 12th century. It has preserved many original elements of architecture. The main symbol of the religious monument is the gilded statue of the Virgin Mary. It is installed on its western tower. The cathedral is built in the Gothic style. An important pilgrimage site is located in it. This is the mausoleum of Pope John XXII. Complete article

Fortified city of Carcassonne, France

Fortified city of Carcassonne, France The medieval city of Carcassonne is also sure to impress those who like to walk through interesting historical places. The city is located on the banks of the River Aude. The very first fortification was built in this place in the Gallo-Roman period. The territory of the medieval city is surrounded by two rows of defensive walls today. Their length is about 3,000 meters. The structure of the fortress wall has 52 towers. Many interesting buildings from the Middle Ages are located behind the wall. Complete article

Historic city of Lyon, France

Historic city of Lyon, France The historic district of Old Lyon is also rich in unique architectural and religious attractions. It is a landmark of world significance thanks to them today. The most active development of the historic district took place during the Renaissance. Most of the historical buildings managed to survive in their original form to this day thanks to the strict policy of the city authorities. Complete article

Jurisdiction of Saint-Emilion, France

Jurisdiction of Saint-Emilion, France The region of Saint-Emilion is located on the banks of the Dordogne River. It is famous as a unique wine region. It has long received the status of an outstanding historical landmark. Tourists come here to admire the huge terraces of vineyards, walk through the picturesque hilly terrain, and visit the historic wineries. The area of the region is about 5,400 hectares. Vineyards occupy more than 73% of this area. Complete article

Ancient city Provins, France

Ancient city Provins, France The historic city of Provins is located in the province of Champagne. Its entire territory is also declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This merchant city was formed in the Middle Ages. About 11,5 thousand people live in it at present. The city was built on top of a small hill. One of the largest fairs in France was held on its territory annually in the 13th century. It is noteworthy that the population of the city was several times larger in the Middle Ages than today. Complete article

Lagoons of New Caledonia, France

Lagoons of New Caledonia, France The archipelago of New Caledonia is located in the Pacific Ocean. It is a territory of France. It is famous for its amazing natural attractions. One of the three largest coral reefs in the world is located here. Its length is about 1,500 km. It encircles the main island of the archipelago, which is called Grande Terre. The barrier reef has contributed to the formation of the most beautiful lagoons in these places. Complete article

Episcopal city of Albi, France

Episcopal city of Albi, France The charming city of Albi is located in the southern part of France. It is a real storehouse of historical attractions. The entire historical part of the city is a World Heritage Site. The beautiful Cathédrale Sainte-Cécile is located in the heart of the Old Town. It was built in the Middle Ages. The cathedral is notable for its luxurious design, which managed to survive after more than 500 years. Beautiful frescoes adorn the cathedral. 270 statues are installed in its triforium. The medieval organ is preserved in the cathedral. Everyone can listen to its sound. Complete article

Holy Place of Taputapuatea, French Polynesia

Holy Place of Taputapuatea, French Polynesia The islands of French Polynesia are rich in unique attractions. The sacred site of Taputapuatea is a world-famous tourist attraction. According to researchers, it was founded in the early 11th century. This sacred place is considered the most significant in the archipelago today. An amazing monument of Polynesian culture was destroyed with the arrival of colonizers on the islands. Complete article
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