Palais des Ducs et des Etats de Bourgogne (Dijon Ducal Palace) Tours

The seat of Burgundian power was in Dijon, and in Dijon, it was found in the fabulous Palais des Ducs et des Etats de Bourgogne, more simply known as the Ducal Palace. Originally built as a small fortress, it was rebuilt in the latter half of the 14th century by Philip the Bold, the first Duke of Valois. Some of this Gothic construction is still visible, and it provides an interesting contrast to the classicism exhibited much of the rest of the church, which was added in the 17th and 18th centuries. The Ducal Palace is one of the few remaining monuments of the Capetian period in Burgundy. Its most famous feature is the Tour Phillippe le Bon, which overlooks the whole city.

Today, the palace is still the scene of Dijon politics, as the Mayor of Dijon and other administrators are officed within its walls. It's also a museum; the ground floor is dedicated to the building's and Dijon's history, and its east wing contains the Musee des Beaux-Arts, one of the most important art museums in all of France. The Musee des Beaux-Arts' collection includes medieval and Renaissance sculpture and paintings (representing both the Italian and Northern Renaissances).

Coincidentally reflecting Dijon's reputation as a center of culinary excellence, one of the Ducal Palace's most salient features are its huge kitchens with their 6 fireplaces. When visiting Dijon, be aware that due to its role in day-to-day city management, the Ducal Palace is occasionally closed to the public.

Address: Dijon, France
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