Bourges Travel Guide

  • Cathédrale Saint-Étienne - mi's
    Cathédrale Saint-Étienne - mi's
    by black_mimi99
  • menetou salon church
    menetou salon church
    by black_mimi99
  • mi's
    by black_mimi99

Bourges Things to Do

  • Visit the Cathedral, a UNESCO World...

    St. Etienne is one of the outstanding cathedrals in Europe. One of the interesting things to me was that the cathedral does not dominate the Bourges skyline the way Chartres does. We drove into town and were trying to navigate the narrow streets when I looked down one tiny street and realized there was an immense cathedral at the end of the street,...

  • Meet a Gargoyle

    Gargoyles are cute and they get great press but they are there for a purpose. We were visiting St. Etienne in Bourges one dark gloomy day and suddenly it sounded as though a river was running past the church. There is no river beside the church so all of us headed to the door to see what was happening.The heavens had opened and water was descending...

  • Eglise St. Pierre is worth a visit too.

    We were following P signs to find public parking and ended up parked beside Eglise St. Pierre. One goes to Bourges to visit St. Etienne but St. Pierre is also worth a visit. It is on the Route de Compostela and well cared for. There are lovely stained glass windows and some quite well preserved frescoes.It is an easy walk to Old Town and to the...

  • Study the West Facade Central Portal

    The tympanum of the central door of the West front is a 13C masterpiece, featuring the Last Judgement. The lowest level (the lintel) depicts the dead rising from their coffins. Above them St. Michael is weighing the souls and dividing them as saved or damned to his right and left. Above this scene sits Christ as Judge surrounded on each side by a...

  • The Cathedral Chapels Have Old Stained...

    There are 5 apsidial chapels (the central one is the Lady Chapel). All have stained glass of the 1215-25 period with blue and red colors predominating. Unfortunately we no longer can identify the religious scenes portrayed. Each window (as at Chartres) is embedded in a different geometric array. At the edge of the Lady Chapel are kneeling statues...

  • Walk the Town

    In walking the town , there are many old buildings. We walked past the 15 C church of St.-Pierre -le-Guillard and the timbered Tithe Barn next to the cathedral. In that area there was an Archbishop’s Palace (17C) with a garden behind it said to be laid out by Le Notre.

  • Enter the Private Chapel

    The private chapel is approached through a gallery with an inverted ship-keel wooden ceiling. The chapel doorways are accoladed and the vaulted ceiling is painted with Angels carrying swirling scrolls. The ceiling ribs descend to finely sculpted corbels.

  • Home Comforts of Jacques Coeur

    Many of the rooms have finely worked mantelpieces. Instead of coats of arms or allegorical subjects, the decorations contain windows or houses with the occupants looking out (as on the palace entry). Over one doorway is an exquisite bas-relief of a large galley, the sort of ship that Coeur used in bringing stuffs from the Levant. Instead of...

  • Details in the Great Hall

    The great hall is large enough to exhibit several treasures such as the remaining pieces of the destroyed tomb of the Duc de Berry created by Jean de Cambrai after 1422. His work is fine but not as great as its prototype by Claus Sluter in Dijon for his brother. (The original gisant is in the Cathedral crypt. See our Tip). The pleurants in this one...

  • Enter the Palace of Jacques Coeur

    From the courtyard one ascends the hexagonal central staircase to the rooms of the first floor which have beamed ceilings. The entries from the stairs to the rooms are finely decorated. The grand hall has an immense fireplace and a minstrel gallery.

  • Go Into the Crypt

    Being above the ground the crypt has full windows and a ground level entrance.It also has massive pillars and ogival vaulting. It houses a marble statue of the famous patron of the arts, the Duc de Berry, all that remains of his tomb created by Jean de Cambrai in 1436. for a destroyed chapel. The Duc had the elaborate west central facade window...

  • Walk Around the Cathedral St.-Etienne

    The construction of Bourges Cathedral started in 1195, one year after Chartres. Flying buttresses were now an accepted adjunct to building Gothic cathedral walls. They were first used in 1180 at St.-Germain-des-Pres in Paris on its chevet. By 1195 they had advanced from an emergency strut to a design component. This allowed for even more height and...

  • Visit the Palace of Jacques Coeur

    The Palace of Jacques Coeur (built 1431-45) still stands. It is very rare example of a Gothic mansion. It is a set of buildings built as an irregular rectangle around a central courtyard. It has a protected entrance on the East side. Access to the 3-4 stories is via tower staircases ranging from decorated hexagonal (the main one) to square or round...

  • Enter the Cathedral

    The interior of the cathedral should be seen as a single immense unit (407 ft. long, 121 ft. high and 135 ft. wide) The are two aisles on each side of the nave. The inner aisle is more than half the nave height . The aisles run continuously around the apse as a double ambulatory. There are no transepts. The wall btween the two aisles contains a low...

  • Public Park

    This public park not far from train station, and its sooo great while being here cos of the flowers...


Bourges Hotels

See all 27 Hotels in Bourges
  • Best Western Hotel D'angleterre

    1 Place Des 4 Pilliers, Bourges 18000

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Business

  • Le Christina

    5 rue de la Halle, , Bourges, Centre 18000

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Business

  • All Seasons Bourges

    Zac de l'Echangeur Rue Aristide Auxenfans, Bourges, 18000, France

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Families

Bourges Restaurants

  • Very much a local restaurant

    Last Fall we got caught in a terrible rainstorm in Bourges, trapped inside the cathedral. As lunch time approached and started to pass, we decided that if we wanted lunch, we would have to brave the lessening rain and find a restaurant so we set off in a very heavy drizzle . . . that was a great improvement in the weather! We finally found Comptoir...

  • Fine Food (and a Place to Stay?)

    Le Grand Argentier has long been considered by locals as one of the finest restaurants in Bourges and we agree. Long ago we dined there on two consecutive evenings. In those days, it also had nice bedrooms in this 15C house, to rent upstairs for the night, but I cannot find that this is still possible. The name of the establishment derives from the...

  • One of the best restaurants in town

    The restaurant is located inside an older "bourgeois" home.The menu for 30Euros is superb. There is a cheaper menu but this one is the best value for your money.The presentation is beautiful. Each plate looks like a piece of artwork. Check out the website for a list of dishes offered on this menu. I loved the desserts but every single dish we...

  • Specialty Tea

    This place is unique and the tea really great, and also don't miss the cake too....Open: tuesday-saturday 12-2pm, 3-7pm Sunday 3-7pm

  • Bar Brasserie

    This was about the only restaurant opened in Bourges, or at least the only one we saw opened?!?! We were starving so bad, we just had to come in and I'm glad we did cos we had a great time in here! It's easy to visualise how the locals reacted when they first saw us, two oriental lads and a black girl, stepping in. Everyone was practically staring...

  • The St Ambroix restaurant is...

    The St Ambroix restaurant is in a beautiful renovated old chapel. The food is wonderful. It's expensive and the staff is a little 'stuffy' but the decor is superb.Beautiful setting. The cheese tray (dozens of all types of cheeses)


Bourges Nightlife

  • Summer Evening Concerts

    During the summer tourist season, there is a continuous series of musical events in the evenings at Bourges. Most of these are presented outdoors in venues that have other uses during the day. The tourist office web site lists these and they can be discovered in Bourges at the office. One of the places used is the courtyard of the jacques Coeur...

  • Ehem...

    Ask me but in this little town, theres hardly any life after 6pm! Lol! Once the shops are shut, and the sky gets dark, the people disappear too. Hahaha!Having a stroll after dinner through the medieval streets of Bourges is just about one of the best things you can do. This place is so clean, and so tiny, you can hardly loose your way around. The...

  • Bourges Hotels

    27 Hotels in Bourges

Bourges Transportation

  • M.E.R.V's Profile Photo

    by M.E.R.V Updated Apr 5, 2003

    There are trains departing almost every hour from Paris Austerlitz to Bourges. The train station in Paris is very user friendly, you can either get your tickets from the automachines or from the counters. Tickets are usually 35euros return on the very comfortable SNCF trains. The journey takes about 2 1/2hours normally and you might have to change trains. When you arrive in Bourges, the station is so small you wont have to worry about losing your way. The main street in town is about 20minutes walking and a map isnt really necessary.

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Bourges Local Customs

  • Bazaar

    Before christmas in Bourges always have bazaar, they sell manything kind stuff for christmas or for decoration... and mostly is handmade....

  • Life in Bourges

    The pace of life here in Bourges is really slow and people seem to take it really easy. The people here are so nice they treat you like part of their family. I hardly saw any tourists here, I thought we were the only ones who ever came here cos everyone was giving us a weird stare! Lol!

  • If you go to a nice...

    If you go to a nice restaurant, they will bring you the 'plateau de fromages' (cheese tray) and you will be asked to select what cheese you want. The general rule of thumb is to select no more than 3 small pieces(the waiter will cut them for you) just point or ask for a mild, strong cheese, or name the cheese if you are familiar with what is...


Bourges Off The Beaten Path

  • Menetou Salon

    Menetou-Salon is 18 km from Bourges and 180 km from Paris. It's famous with the chateau de menetou salon. Too bad when our coming, the chateau closed, so we just around in this small city.

  • Cathedral of Clamecy

    Cathedral Clamecy, now the Chapelle Notre-Dame-de-Bethléem (English: Our Lady of Bethlehem) in Clamecy, France, was started in the 12th and completed in the 15th century.

  • Around city

    When I saw this street around the city, its like we walk into old time, all the houses, the street, the sign...


Bourges Favorites

  • Jean Duc du Berry

    Very little remains to celebrate Bourges most famous ruler. Jean, Duc du Berry, was the brother of King Charles V and was the richest and most cultured member of his family. His father Jean II (le Bon) was of similar nature. The son was exchanged as a hostage to the English who had captured the father. When this was resolved in the 1340’s he...

  • Jacques Coeur

    The statue brings up memories of the history of Jacques Coeur. He was born in Bourges (1394-1456), and was a financier and merchant who became master of the mint (Grand Argentier) under Charles V, where he unified the coinage of the country. He prospered by his development of French trade with the Levant and had many associates carefully located...

  • The Cathedral St Etienne in...

    The Cathedral St Etienne in Bourges was built in the 13th century and is one of the top rated cathedrals in France. This is where I had my first communion.For more information check with the Bourges Tourism Office We attended a wedding in this Cathedral last year and the organ music was absolutely wonderful.


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