Reims city centre is full of history and beautiful old buildings. With many pedestrian-only streets, it is a pleasure to wander around the town. And wait for the best part: you can walk to a Champagne cellar from there! It’s one of my favourite day trips from Paris by train.
Reims is rather small so in my opinion, one day is enough to see it all, although you will need a bit more time if you want to check out some museums or do more than one champagne cellar.
Monuments in Reims & town centre
The most famous monument there is the magnificent Cathedral Notre-Dame de Reims, the kind of French Westminster Abbey as it is the place where the French kings were crowned. The cathedral is listed in the UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and so is the Palace of Tau just next to it.
I was lucky to end up seeing the Saint-Rémi of Reims Basilica without planning it, to the south of the town centre, as it was on my way to Pommery producing house. For those looking for restaurants and bars, Place d’Erlon is the place to go to. If you prefer shopping, you will find plenty of shops nearby including the Gallerie Lafayette.
“Champagne, s’il vous plait!”
History is great. But the other reason for which Reims is famous is that it is considered the capital of Champagne. I loooove champagne, so I did not miss the opportunity to visit a cellar!
The tour of Pommery caves was quick. For 10€, I visited for ½ hour the cave with a guide and had a tasting of the champagne – the more you pay, the better the champagne is. It was interesting to learn how the champagne is made, stocked and so on.
The cave was made for touring, with easy access, beautiful lights effects and good organisation and explanations from the tour guide. Some rooms have sculptures framed on the wall (I am not sure how to call them) showing us stories about champagne from years and years ago; that was interesting!
Without a car, I was limited to visiting only one winery during my short visit to Reims. If you want to see more, I recommend joining a tour to optimise your visit and check out more than one Champagne winery in one day. Click here to view tours from Paris* or here to view tours from the town centre*.
If you’re keen to stay longer than just one day, I recommend choosing a hotel in Reims City Centre, as I find it was the most interesting and charming area. Click here to view availabilities*.
Have you been to Reims? What cave did you visit? Please leave a comment below to share your experience!
Where is Reims?
Reims station is within walking distance from the town centre and the beautiful monuments. It is very easy to travel to Reims from Paris, and practical: it only takes 45 minutes by train!
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