A day trip to Givry, France

A few weeks ago we started our new mission of visiting a small town or village in the region every weekend. Our first town was Givry. Though we had passed through Givry before when we were on a bike ride, we had not seen any of the sights.

Givry is about 10km west of Chalon-sur-Saône, and is known for its red wines, which were supposedly a favorite of King Henry IV. It is a quaint town of old stone buildings, monuments, and vineyards.

We first tried to visit the church, Église de Givry, a surprisingly imposing structure just outside the center of town. Sadly every door was locked, but perhaps if we go back during tourist season it will be open to the public.

We next walked towards the old hôtel de ville, which is a building with a large arch built over the main road into the center of town. The arch is a unique site, and it is decorated with a “France moderne” emblem on one side, and an emblem representing Givry on the other side.

Givry hôtel de ville   Givry vineyard

At the center of town there is an ancient grain market, the Halle de Blé. It is a round structure with a spiral staircase at the center. It too was closed, but we peaked in the glass windows.

Across the street is a cozy restaurant where we ate lunch, La Cadole. I had the Œufs en Meurette paired with a local red wine. Eric had some type of white fish covered in a creamy sauce and accompanied by vegetables. We also had a wonderful cheese plate of mildly sweet to pungent cheeses. One cheese plate between the two of us was plenty. Our simple meals sated us for our afternoon of exploring.

After lunch we walked over to the local tourist office and picked up a some information about the area. They suggested a self-guided walk around town showing more sites. Supposedly they have the pamphlet for this walk in English, but on the day we were there they only had German and French versions available.

We first stopped to do some wine tasting at Domaine Thénard. The tasting was free, and we liked both the local reds and whites. We purchased a red to add to our “cellar” of whites. Our “cellar” consisted of three whites placed on the fireplace mantel, which Eric thinks we probably won’t ever drink because we always go wine tasting rather than drink at home.

We walked around the town getting soggy in the perpetual rain. We saw the local lavoir, as well fish- and sea-themed fountains. There was also a statue of the town’s protector built into old fortifications. On our walk we wandered off course when we spotted the vineyards. We were rewarded by finding an area with vineyards that surrounded old stone houses or possibly sheds halfway up the slope. The view was quite nice on a wet February day, and I want to return in the summer to see the vineyards in their full glory.

We had a nice time in Givry, but I am looking forward to going back in better weather when there might be more picturesque photo opportunities.

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