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Situated in the South East of France, 1 hour from Lyon and 2 hours from Marseille, the city that carries the nickname “Little Venice” appeals to visitors for its rich historical and cultural heritage and location close to nature.
Are you visiting Valence? Here are the must-sees during your stay!
The Epervière park comes from the river that runs through it and constitutes a natural haven of peace.
Its location is ideal, as it is only 5 minutes from downtown Valence and on the banks of the Rhône.
You will be amazed by the botanical wealth and the superb view of the Crussol massif and its castle. The trees and meadows on the site have been kept to preserve the environment, and the orchard is cultivated without pesticides.
Furthermore, you can now choose and pick your fruit among the many species of trees in the park.
The Parc de l’Épervière also houses a superb arboretum that offers the possibility to follow a path to perfect your knowledge of trees and biodiversity.
If you want a place to stay in Valence, a hotel in the city center is the best option to enjoy your experience entirely.
With the Rhone River nearby, Valence has many waterways, forming nearly 17 km of main canals.
Along the way, you will discover old wash houses, hydraulic works, fountains, and footbridges that bear witness to the historical use of these canals.
Since 1960, the city has taken steps to safeguard and enhance the canals, which today represent a significant asset for the region. Authentic places to walk, sometimes hidden and secret, are the ideal opportunity to enjoy the surrounding nature and animals because lined with lush vegetation, these canals are the refuge of many aquatic species, such as the trout or the palmate newt.
More information about the canals can be found on the city’s website.
Open every day from 8 am to 7 pm, the Cathedral of Saint Apollinaire is one of the city’s landmarks. This Romanesque architectural style building dates back to the XIᵉ century, making it the oldest monument in Valence. After being destroyed during the Wars of Religion, reconstruction work was undertaken in the XVIIᵉ century.
Since 1982, it has been on the city’s list of historical monuments and appears as a must-see in Valence.
The ViaRhôna is a cycling route that connects Lake Geneva to the Mediterranean Sea by following the Rhône River and allows you to discover exceptional landscapes. Vineyards, lavender, olive groves, and small perched villages guarantee an unforgettable ride. We advise you to try the 30 kilometers itinerary that links the cities of Valence, la Voulte-sur-Rhône, and le Pouzin in Ardèche.
This square is located in Old Valence and, since the Vᵉ century, it has been an important place in the life of the city’s people. Once known as the market square and where justice was served, today you can find many restaurants and bars, shops, and charming little pastel houses with tiled roofs.
We recommend you go there on Saturday mornings, when the most popular food market in Valence is held. It’s an opportunity to stock up on fruits, vegetables, cheeses, olives, and other local specialties.
Valence’s Museum of Art and Archaeology houses more than 20,000 works and, as its name suggests, consists of an art section that features Dutch, Flemish, Italian and French works. The archaeology section allows you to learn more about the different civilizations that populated Valence and the entire Rhone Valley.
Moreover, the museum also includes a Belvedere that offers a 360° view of Valence and its surroundings.
Open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 10 am to 12 pm, and from 2 pm to 6 pm. The museum rates are as follows:
To discover the current temporary exhibitions, go to the Valence museum website.
If you cross the Rhone River into Ardèche land, you can discover the ruins of the Crussol Castle. This medieval fortress from the XIIᵉ is located 15 minutes by car from the city center, just across from Valence, on a prominent rocky promontory. We recommend putting on a good pair of walking shoes to reach the remains of the castle. It is necessary to climb a bit. On the way, don’t miss stopping and discover the amphitheater of Crussol, which overhangs the valley.
This magnificent walk mixes history, culture, and heritage, and it would be a shame to miss it during your stay in Valence.