North East France
North East France
Both France and Germany have conquered what we now call North Eastern France several times. The territory has been subjected to wars by both countries since the Verdun Treaty in 843, after Charles the Great died. These wars have sparked locals to move often as many did not agree with their new rulers.
As a result a diverse mix of dialects and cultures developed. This can be seen in German-like names and half-timbered houses. The local food and the well known Alsace grapes, like Riesling and Gewürztraminer originate from German times. In addition, the famous physician Albert Schweizer came from Alsace. In the north east are the districts of Lorraine, Champagne-Ardenne and Franche-Comté. Comté is known for its spicy cheese and the Champagne region for its sparkling wine from the areas near Reims and Châlons sur Marne.
Lorraine has beautiful cities like Metz and Nancy. Nancy owes its picturesque city centre to the Polish king Stanislas. He was appointed by the French king to rule the area temporarily but he ended up ruling for over 30 years before he passed away at the age of ninety.
Facts about North East France
The secret Champagne is in second fermentation. It has to be created in the bottle to effect the carbonation of the wine. During the process the pressure in the bottle rises and this why they are made of thick glass. To remove the sediment, the bottles are stored upside down and the bottle's neck is frozen. The cork is then carefully removed, allowing the sediment to be pushed out of the bottle by the pressure inside. The bottles are then quickly closed with what eill be their final cork.
North East France in short
Area: Elzas: 8280km2; Lorraine: 23,550km2; Champagne- Ardenne: 25,600km2; Franche-Comté: 16,200km2
Population: Elzas: 1,800,000; Lorraine: 2,345,000; Champagne-Ardenne: 1,340,000; Franche-Comté: 1,117,000
Capital: Elzas: Straatsburg; Lorraine: Metz; Champagne - Ardenne: Chalons-en-Champagne; Franche Comté: Besancon
Currency and language: Euro, French July August Average temperature 24 25 Hours of sun 8 7
Distances: Calais - Reims: 270km; Nancy - Châlons-en- Champagne: 160km; Strasbourg - Metz: 164km
Recommended (low cost) airport: Metz, Nancy.
The river Doubs is ideal for a family canoe trip. Halfway along is the friendly and quaint city of Ornans. Visit the freedom tower in St.Dié and Joan of Arc's birth place of Domrémy-la-Pucelle. For car enthusiasts visit the Bugatti museum in Mulhouse. Another must see is the unique Swiss car designer Sbarro in Pontarlier. Sport cyclists will enjoy the many routes that take you through the mountains. This area is also used in the Tour de France.
All taxes are subject to change until the fare is paid in full.