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This is a lively town on the River Saône with a market three times a week at the Place St-Vincent. The cathedral square has a café society with Le Moulin à Cafe and speciality shops such as Légendes Gourmandes. There are fine half-timbered houses overlooking the Place; Rue de Châtelet and Grande Rue are worth visiting also to see 17th and 14th century facades. The cathedral itself is a good example of Romanesque architecture.
If you are interested in photography, Joseph Nicéphore-Niépce who invented the first photograph was born in Chalon in 1765. A museum dedicated to him is housed in the Hôtel des Messageries on the banks of the Saône. Apart from cameras, it has a fine photographic collection on display tracing the history of photography. Along the Quai, the Atelier St-Jean there is an art gallery with exhibitions by prominent artists.
The bakery, La Meulière, in Rue Général Leclerc is a particular favourite for whole cereal breads,
biscuits, jams and cheesy wafers for apéros.
A great way to enjoy the river at a leisurely pace is to take the bateau-mouche, La Delta, on a sightseeing tour. Trips range from an excursion cruise of an hour and a half for 12 euros up to a dinner cruise. (www.croisieres-saonoises.fr) Also see River Trips.
Wed and Sun mornings, Friday
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A vibrant street festival held every July attracting more than 30,000 visitors
4 km south east of the town, has a collection of 25,000 roses
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Pam Elson ©burgundytoday.com