Dijon: The Complete Guide

Dijon

In Celtic times, Dijon occupied a crucial spot on the tin trading route that stretched from Britain to the Adriatic. By around 1000 AD, it became the capital of the Dukes of Burgundy. During the 14th and 15th centuries, under the rule of Dukes Philippe le Hardi (the Bold—who as a young boy fought the English at Poitiers), Jean sans Peur (the Fearless), Philippe le Bon (the Good—who infamously sold Joan of Arc to the English), and Charles le Téméraire (also known as the Bold), Dijon thrived. Leveraging their substantial wealth and control over Flanders, the premier manufacturing hub of the time, the dukes transformed Dijon into one of Europe’s foremost centers for art, learning, and science.

In 1477, upon its incorporation into the Kingdom of France, Dijon lost its status as a capital, yet it has remained a leading city in the country. Presently, it is a prosperous university city known for its elegance, modernity, and vibrancy, particularly when filled with students. Dijon is relatively small, and its central area, perfect for walking, encompasses most of the city’s key sights. The introduction of two new tramlines has revitalized the area, pushing automobile traffic to the periphery, making the city center more pedestrian-friendly. Visitors arriving by car are advised to park at their hotels and explore on foot.

The city’s main thoroughfare, Rue de la Liberté, runs east from the expansive and beautiful Place Darcy and the 18th-century Porte Guillaume triumphal arch, once a city gate, past the Dukes of Burgundy’s palace, to the semi-circular Place de la Libération. This elegant classical square leads to Rue Rameau, stretching east to Place du Théâtre, and further to Rue Vaillant, which leads to the Church of St Michel. Most attractions are just a short walk from this central axis, which is also lined with upscale shops, large department stores, and charming old homes.

TOUR TIPS: If you are visiting Dijon for just a day and want to make the most of your visit, you may want to consider taking a walking tour with a local guide. This is one of the most complete and best-rated city tours that covers the main, must-see attractions in about 2 hours. If you were thinking of taking a wine tour this full day tour includes a lunch in an 18th-century castle! For the more energentic try this 3 hour bike tour and Tastings around the Vineyards of Burgundy! If you prefer walking at your own pace read our Walking tour of Dijon.

Visiting Dijon for the first time and wondering what are the top places to see in the city? In this complete guide, I share the best things to do in Dijon on the first visit. To help you plan your trip, I have also included an interactive map and practical tips for visiting!

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21 Best places to See in Dijon

This complete guide to Dijon not only tells you about the very best sights and tourist attractions for first-time visitors to the city but also provide insights into a few of our personal favorite things to do.

This is a practical guide to visiting the best places to see in Dijon and is filled with tips and info that should answer all your questions!

Palais des Ducs

Palais Des Ducs De Bourgogne
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Ketounette
A visit to Dijon often centers around its historical heart, the Palais des Ducs, which is situated at the city’s core. The main courtyard faces the Place de la Libération, a serene square designed by Jules Hardouin-Mansart, who was one of the architects responsible for Versailles. Constructed in the late 17th century, this area has […]
Location: Palais des Ducs et des États de Bourgogne, Rue Rameau, Dijon, France | Distance: 0.00km
Visiting Palais des Ducs

We recommend to rent a car in Spain through Discover Cars, they compare prices and review multiple car rental agencies. Book your rental car here.

Tour Philippe le Bon

Dijon Tour Philippe Le Bon
CC BY-SA 3.0 / François de Dijon
The Philip the Good Tower, a distinguished landmark in Dijon, stands at an impressive height of 46 meters (about 150 feet). This tower is not only a marvel of medieval architecture but also a testament to the historical and architectural heritage of the region. Constructed between 1450 and 1460, the tower was commissioned by Philip […]
Location: Tour Philippe le Bon, Place des Ducs de Bourgogne, Dijon, France | Hours: 10.00-17.50 | Price: €6.00 | Website | Distance: 0.00km
Visiting Tour Philippe le Bon

Explore Dijon yourself with our self-guided walking tour!

Musée des Beaux-Arts

Tombeaux Ducs Bourgogne
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Arnaud 25
The Musée des Beaux-Arts in Dijon boasts a compelling collection spanning from the Middle Ages to the 20th century. Among its most celebrated pieces are the Flemish paintings, notably the “Nativity” by the so-called Master of Flémalle. This enigmatic artist is considered a pioneer, along with van Eyck, in breaking away from the rigid conventions […]
Location: Musée des Beaux-Arts, Rue Rameau, Dijon, France | Hours: October 1 to May 31: 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. / June 1 to September 30: 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Closed on Tuesdays, as well as January 1, May 1 and May 8, July 14, November 1 and 11, December 25. | Price: Guided tour: €6 | Website | Distance: 0.10km
Visiting Musée des Beaux-Arts

Église Notre-Dame de Dijon

Eglise Notre Dame Dijon
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Benh LIEU SONG
The Church of Notre-Dame of Dijon stands as an impressive testament to 13th-century Gothic architecture, having begun its construction around 1230. Over the years, it has grown to become an emblematic cultural and historical landmark for the city of Dijon. Notably, the church houses the revered statue of Notre-Dame de Bon-Espoir, once known as the […]
Location: Église Notre-Dame, Place Notre Dame, Dijon, France | Hours: Open every day from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., except Sundays from 9 a.m. | Distance: 0.10km
Visiting Église Notre-Dame de Dijon

Place de la Liberation (Liberation Square)

Dijon - Place De La Liberation
CC BY-SA 2.0 / Christophe.Finot
Liberation Square is a pivotal element in the historic heart of Dijon, featuring a distinctive semicircular design and dominated by the impressive Grand Palace of the Dukes of Burgundy. This square has seen numerous name changes and transformations over the centuries, each reflecting the shifting events and eras it has endured. Completed in 1686, it […]
Location: Place de la Libération, Dijon, France | Hours: 24 Hours | Price: Free | Distance: 0.10km
Visiting Place de la Liberation (Liberation Square)

Maison Millière

Maison Millière - Dijon
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Chabe01
The Millière house, a Gothic-style half-timbered house from the 15th century, is located at 10 rue de la Chouette in Dijon, Côte-d’Or. It has been recognized as a historic monument since 1943. History of Maison Millière Constructed in 1483, the Millière house was built by Guillaume Millière, a draper merchant, and his wife Guillemette Durand. […]
Location: Maison Millière - Restaurant Boutique Bar à vin et Salon de thé, Rue de la Chouette, Dijon, France | Distance: 0.10km
Visiting Maison Millière

Owl of Dijon

Dijon Eglise Notre-Dame De Dijon
CC BY-SA 2.0 / StéphaneMarie
On the north side of Notre-Dame in Dijon, there lies a small chapel along the quaint rue de la Chouette (Owl Street), a popular pedestrian way. A particular corner of a chapel buttress features a sculpted bird, commonly thought to represent an owl. This carving may have been the personal insignia of a stonemason; it […]
Location: The Owl of Dijon, Rue de la Chouette, Dijon, France | Hours: 24 Hours | Price: Free | Distance: 0.10km
Visiting Owl of Dijon

Hôtel de Vogüé

Dijon Hôtel De Vogüé
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Zairon
The Hôtel de Vogüé in Dijon, Côte-d’Or, is a distinguished 17th-century mansion, located at 8 rue de la Chouette, close to the apse of the Notre-Dame church. It has been recognized as a historic monument since January 5, 1911. History of Hôtel de Vogüé This elaborately adorned mansion was constructed over three properties acquired in […]
Location: Hôtel de Vogüé, Rue de la Chouette, Dijon, France | Distance: 0.10km
Visiting Hôtel de Vogüé

Halles de Dijon

Halles Centrales - Dijon
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Chabe01
The central market halls of Dijon, built between 1873 and 1875, are notable examples of metallic architecture located in Côte-d’Or, Burgundy-Franche-Comté. They have been recognized as historic monuments since 1975. History of Halles de Dijon In 1868, the city of Dijon decided to construct a covered market, with initial plans drafted by the city’s architect […]
Location: Halles centrales et marché central, Dijon, France | Hours: Tuesday: 7am to 1pm, Thursday: 7am to 1pm (indoor market only), Friday: 7am to 1pm, Saturday: 7am to 1pm | Distance: 0.20km
Visiting Halles de Dijon

Place François-Rude

Place Du Bareuzai Dijon
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Francis of Dijon
Place François-Rude, known locally as Place du Bareuzai, is a central square in downtown Dijon. Situated at a bustling city crossroads, this square intersects Rue des Forges, Rue François-Rude, and Rue de la Liberté, making it one of the most visited tourist spots in Dijon. The square is named in honor of the sculptor François […]
Location: Place François Rude, Dijon, France | Hours: 24 Hours | Price: Free | Distance: 0.20km
Visiting Place François-Rude

Place du Théâtre, Dijon

Place Théâtre - Dijon
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Chabe01
Place du Théâtre is a bustling tourist spot in Dijon, known for its central location near the city’s Museum of Fine Arts. The square features a large Italian theater in the Neoclassical style, a municipal library housed in the former Saint-Étienne church, and the Saint-Michel church. Additionally, it is home to several breweries, hotels, banks, […]
Location: Place du Théâtre, Dijon, France | Hours: 24 Hours | Price: Free | Distance: 0.20km
Visiting Place du Théâtre, Dijon

Musée Rude

Musée Rude
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Arnaud 25
The Musée Rude in Dijon is a captivating art museum dedicated to celebrating the works of François Rude, a prominent French sculptor born in 1784. Situated in a segment of the former Église Saint-Étienne, constructed in the 11th century, this museum has been welcoming art enthusiasts since 1947. It proudly bears the “Musée de France” […]
Location: Musée Rude, Rue Vaillant, Dijon, France | Hours: Daily from 9:30 am to 6 pm from June 1 to September 30 | Price: Free | Distance: 0.20km
Visiting Musée Rude

Eglise Saint-Michel, Dijon

Dijon Eglise Saint-Michel
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Provence13
The Saint-Michel Church, situated within the historic district of Dijon, is renowned for its 16th-century Renaissance facade, regarded as one of the most exquisite in France. It has been officially listed as a historic monument since 1840. History of Eglise Saint-Michel, Dijon The earliest record of Saint-Michel Church dates back to 889. Initially, it likely […]
Location: Église Saint-Michel, Place Saint-Michel, Dijon, France | Hours: Open every day from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., except Sundays from 9 a.m. | Distance: 0.30km
Visiting Eglise Saint-Michel, Dijon

Poste Place Grangier

Hôtel Des Postes De Dijon
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Chabe01
The Hôtel des Postes de Dijon, now known as Postes Grangier, is an architectural complex with elements inspired by the Louis XVI style, located at multiple addresses around Place Grangier in Dijon. History of Poste Place Grangier Originally called “la grande Poste,” this building was designed by Louis Perreau, a prominent architect in early 20th-century […]
Location: Postes et Télécommunications, Place Grangier, Dijon, France | Distance: 0.40km
Visiting Poste Place Grangier

Cathédrale Saint-Bénigne

Cathédrale Saint Bénigne - Dijon
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Chabe01

Location: Cathédrale Saint-Bénigne de Dijon, Place Saint Bénigne, Dijon, France | Hours: Open every day from 9am to 12pm and from 2pm to 6.30pm, except Saturdays when it is open until 5.30pm. | Distance: 0.50km
Visiting Cathédrale Saint-Bénigne

Porte Guillaume

Porte Guillaume - Dijon
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Chabe01
The Porte Guillaume is a notable monument in Dijon, originally constructed in the 18th century on the site of a medieval gateway. History of Porte Guillaume In the 12th century, there was an old gate as part of Dijon’s surrounding walls. Architect Jean-Philippe Maret designed the current monument between 1786 and 1788 to honour the […]
Location: Porte Guillaume, Place Darcy, Dijon, France | Hours: 24 Hours | Price: Free | Distance: 0.50km
Visiting Porte Guillaume

Musée Archéologique de Dijon

Musée Archéologique De Dijon
Public Domain / Jochen Jahnke
The Musée Archéologique de Dijon, established in 1832, serves as a beacon of archaeological exploration into Burgundy’s rich past. Nestled within the historic Abbey of St. Bénigne next to the Dijon Cathedral, this museum showcases an extensive array of artifacts spanning prehistory to the Middle Ages, including unique collections of paleochristian art, sacred art, and […]
Location: Musée archéologique de Dijon, Rue Docteur Maret, Dijon, France | Hours: Open every day except Tuesday April 1 to October 31 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and from 1:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. November 2 to March 31 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and from 1:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Closed on January 1 , May 1 and May 8, July 14, November 1 and 11, December 25 N.B. Museum not heated during winter | Price: Guided tour: €6 | Website | Distance: 0.50km
Visiting Musée Archéologique de Dijon

Grand Hôtel la Cloche

Grand Hotel La Cloche Dijon
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Jean Housen
The Grand Hôtel la Cloche, a five-star establishment located at 14 Place Darcy in Dijon, has facades and roofs recognized as historic monuments. Known to the locals simply as “la Cloche,” this hotel has been a landmark in Dijon for over five centuries, celebrated for its rich history, distinctive architecture, and esteemed reputation. History of […]
Location: Grand Hôtel La Cloche Dijon - MGallery, Place Darcy, Dijon, France | Distance: 0.60km
Visiting Grand Hôtel la Cloche

Jardin Darcy (Darcy Garden), Dijon

Dijon - Parc Darcy
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Eusebius (Guillaume Piolle).
Darcy Garden is a splendid public garden in Dijon that exemplifies the neo-Renaissance style, celebrating the ingenuity of Henry Darcy, a celebrated hydraulic engineer. Designated as a listed historical monument in 2015, the garden is not only a tribute to Darcy’s legacy but also a marvel of landscape architecture. The garden, designed by Félix Vionnois […]
Location: Jardin Darcy, Place Darcy, Dijon, France | Hours: 7.30am until dusk | Distance: 0.80km
Visiting Jardin Darcy (Darcy Garden), Dijon

Jardin botanique de l'Arquebuse

Jardin Arquebuse - Dijon
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Chabe01
The Jardin botanique de l’Arquebuse in Dijon, Côte-d’Or, Bourgogne, France, is a botanical garden and arboretum that spans over 2 hectares, set within a larger park area of 5 hectares. This garden is steeped in history, situated on the site of 16th-century training grounds for arquebus-bearing chevaliers. By the late 18th century, the last captain […]
Location: Jardin Botanique de l'Arquebuse, Avenue Albert 1er, Dijon, France | Hours: 7.30am until dusk | Distance: 1.00km
Visiting Jardin botanique de l'Arquebuse

Chartreuse de Champmol

Dijon Chartreuse De Champmol, Puit De Moïse
CC BY-SA 2.0 / Allie_Caulfield
The Chartreuse de Champmol, founded by Philip the Bold at the end of the 14th century, was established as the burial site for the Valois dukes of Burgundy and quickly became a significant artistic hub. Here, French and northern European artists collaborated, creating a vibrant creative community. Though the monastery was dismantled during the French […]
Location: Chartreuse de Champmol, Dijon, France | Hours: 9am to 5.30pm | Distance: 1.90km
Visiting Chartreuse de Champmol

Best Time to Visit Dijon

The best time to visit Dijon, France, largely depends on what you’re looking to get out of your visit. Here are some insights for each season:

  • Spring (March to May): This is a wonderful time to visit Dijon as the weather starts to warm up and the city begins to bloom. You can enjoy the outdoor attractions comfortably, and it’s also a good time to avoid the larger summer crowds.
  • Summer (June to August): Summer is the peak tourist season in Dijon. The weather is typically warm and sunny, making it ideal for exploring the city’s outdoor sites, like the vineyards of Burgundy. However, be prepared for more tourists and higher prices during this time.
  • Autumn (September to November): Fall is another excellent time to visit Dijon. The weather is still pleasant, and the autumn colors in the city and surrounding countryside are beautiful. It’s also grape harvest time in the nearby vineyards, which can be a particularly interesting experience.
  • Winter (December to February): Winters are generally cold, and some attractions might have reduced hours or be closed, especially in January and February. However, if you enjoy festive atmospheres, visiting Dijon during the Christmas season can be magical with the Christmas markets and lights.

Each season offers its unique charm, but for the most balanced experience of good weather and fewer crowds, spring and autumn are often considered the best times to visit Dijon.

Average Temperatures in Dijon

  • January 9°C 10
  • February 11°C 9
  • March 14°C 7
  • April 18°C 9
  • May 22°C 12
  • June 27°C 12
  • July 30°C 9
  • August 31°C 9
  • September 27°C 9
  • October 21°C 11
  • November 12°C 13
  • December 10°C 13