Saturday September 23

Hotel Athanor Centre, Beaune: 47°01’25.7″N 4°50’07.5″E

Ancien moulin Creancy, Creancy: 47°14’53.7″N 4°35’03.1″E

Today we drove a backroads tour from Beaune through the Burgundy wine region to Creancy. We were motivated to take this particular route after reading about it in Rick Steves’ France Guidebook. Along the way we had some really nice view of the canal and saw many people on biking tours.


The Canal de Bourgogne (Burgundy Canal) looked pretty inviting!

Our first stop was the hill town of Chateauneuf-en-Auxois. At 2,000 feet elevation this town was visible from a long distance and reminded us of medieval castle scenes in movies. It must have been really impressive to people on foot and riding horses or in carriages “back in the day”.

The castle was built in the 14th century and was surrounded by the village.

Today it’s a busy tourist town. It’s like stepping back in time and all of the buildings looked pretty much like the day they were built – very well preserved and respectful of their heritage many centuries later.

Several of the homes in the village had walled gardens. It was fun to peek over the walls to see what was inside.

We stopped for coffee at a café outside the castle after walking around the village enjoying the gardens and architecture.

I also found a nice car for Cath – a very well preserved Citroen 2CV but lost interest quickly when I found out that they were worth about $20,000 and higher back home.

After leaving the hill village we headed north to Flavigny-sur-Ozerain. On our way there we passed through Posanges and drove quickly by a small castle right beside the road. It was so intriguing we turned around and stopped to take a closer look.

This is the Chateau de Posanges, built in year 1440, complete with drawbridge and moat.

Sadly it is no longer open to the public. Definitely worth turning around to see it even from the outside and I would have gladly paid 10 Euros to take a tour though it. I wonder if it will be for sale someday – could be an “Escape to the Chateau” for Cath and I.

We arrived in Flavigny at lunch time. It is really old town that has been home to an abbey since the year 719! Stuff around here is really old!

The abbey is still in use – in fact there are 50 Benedictine monks living at the abbey of St. Joseph. We saw some of them walking down the street but thought it would be rude to take a photo.

This town also had another “15 minutes of fame” in year 2000 when the movie “Chocolat” starring Johnny Depp was filmed here.

We had lunch in a candy factory in the town that is famous for its licorice candies. A very charming location and they serve up a great quiche too!

Just before leaving town we found another classic Citroen for me 🙂

Our last stop was to visit the abbey at Fontenay featured in Rick Steves’ book and on his PBS TV show.

This abbey was founded in year 1118 and was created to recapture the simplicity and solitude of the early church. It is now privately owned and open to the public. The grounds and the buildings are in pristine shape.

It was interesting to see that the abbey church is the same today as when it was built – the floor is earth, there are no furnishings, no stained glass windows and only 1 statue which was of the Virgin Mary.

The simplicity of the architecture added to its beauty.

We drove back south to the little town of Creancy where our B&B host Bernard and his friendly dog Oscar were waiting for us at the Ancien Moulin (the old mill).