A Town of Art and History, standing on the banks of the Loire, the old ducal town of Nevers is dominated by its Gothic cathedral and offers an important architectural and artistic heritage. A walking itinerary, the Blue Trail (Fil Bleu), dotted with signposts and lecterns, invites you to discover the gems of Nevers: the ducal palace, Cathedral of Saint-Cyr-et-Sainte-Julitte, Romanesque Church of Saint-Étienne, Baroque Chapel of Sainte-Marie, Goguin Tower and Croux Gate are some of the monuments that you can admire along the way.
The former residence of the Counts and Dukes of Nivernais, the ducal palace of Nevers, built in the late 15th century for Count Jean de Clamecy, is a remarkable example of civil architecture from the early Renaissance period. A listed Historic Monument, this splendid edifice, adorned with sculptures, is now home to the Tourist Office for Nevers and its region, and many exhibitions are also held within its walls.
Another major building in the town is the Cathedral of Saint-Cyr-et-Sainte-Julitte, flanked by two chancels, a Romanesque one to the West and a Gothic one to the East. Another special feature is its superb modern stained glass windows, whose bright, warm colours diffuse soft, multi-coloured light. With 130 picture windows adding up to 1052 m² of windows, it is one of the biggest sets of contemporary stained glass windows in Europe! A colossal work produced by the artists Alberola, Honegger, Rouan, Ubac and Viallat, which will have taken over 30 years to make!
After visiting the cathedral, take the time to stroll along the charming ramparts walk, from the imposing Croux Gate, a relic of the medieval surrounding wall, to the banks of the Loire...
Next, enter the world of earthenware. In the 17th and 18th centuries, the town was famous for its expertise in this artistic craft, with the remarkable collection of Nevers earthenware, ranging from the 16th to the 20th century, on display at the Frédéric Blandin Municipal Museum. Then find out more about the famous Nevers blue by taking a stroll around the earthenware quarter, located at the approach to the cathedral.
Near to Roger Salengro Park, the Bernadette Area, mother-house of the Sisters of Charity, contains the saint's body in its chapel. Many pilgrims come to pray there, and its offers a museographic area dedicated to the spiritual life of Bernadette Soubirous.
Every year in July, the town of Nevers comes alive, especially during its street theatre festival, Les Z'accros d'ma rue.
Main town of the department of Nièvre, Nevers takes place in Burgundy-Franche-Comté region, in the province of Nivernais. It is located between Auxerre and Chalon-sur-Saône, at the confluence of the Loire and the Nièvre.
People of the Gallo-Roman period, the commune of Nevers was named capital of the hereditary County of Nevers from the tenth century. Former fortified city, it owes its fame to its faience of international renown. The specificity of its products rests on the famous blue of Nevers, a color that is only found on these works of art.
Classified as a city of art and history, Nevers, also known as the City of the Dukes, is today mainly focused on tourism, offering visitors a very important architectural and historical heritage.
Its gastronomy, centered on honey, cheese or even Charolais meat, is also the success of this commune which does not lack charm.
Gothic style, the cathedral Saint-Cyr-et-Sainte-Julitte has been classified to the Historic Monuments. It has the peculiarity of presenting two choirs, one in Gothic style and the other in Romanesque style. Ancient, it reveals however contemporary stained glass particularly colored. Inside, one can admire a baptistery of the 6th century, while the tower offers an impregnable view over the whole city.
Inscribed in the Historic Monuments, the abbey Saint-Martin was established from the eighth century. It loses its bell tower at the French Revolution, before sheltering a market, then the stables of the local gendarmerie. Today, one can only admire the home of the abbot.
A great number of other religious buildings are renowned as Nevers, like the church of St. Peter, or the chapel of St. Mary and its baroque facade. A beautiful Romanesque monument, the church of Saint-Etienne was built in the second half of the eleventh century. Inside, you can admire a Madonna and Child with a polychrome stone dove, classified as a Historic Monument. A former chapel of the 19th century, the chapel of Saint-Sylvain allows to admire a painted decoration of origin installed on virtually all the walls and the vaults.
Former residence of the dukes of Nevers, the ducal palace reveals a very beautiful Renaissance facade. Considered one of the first castles of the Loire, today it is partly used as an annex to the town hall. However, spaces are open to the public, offering aquariums of fish from the Loire, or even temporary exhibitions. Just opposite, the place of the Republic reveals Gallo-Roman vestiges.
Specialized in earthenware, the Frédéric Blandin Museum offers fine collections of enamelled glasses, earthenware and fine art.
As you walk through the city, you can appreciate the 14th century Croux gate, as well as the Goguin tower, which form ancient vestiges of the ramparts. An archaeological museum reveals various objects found around Nevers, inside the door of the Croux. Formerly decorated, the arch of triumph of the city dates from the eighteenth century and was elevated for the victory of Fontenoy.
Famous in the sports world, the circuit of Nevers Magny-Cours welcomes each year the Bol d'Or, or the Grand Prix of France Formula 1.
The gardens of the Baratte offer many different atmospheres to discover during a walk. On the program of the places: vegetable gardens, fountains, laundries, gardens or even old houses of market gardeners.
Rewarded with three flowers in the Contest of Flower Towns and Villages of France, Nevers has many green spaces scattered all over the commune.
The markets of Nevers take place from Tuesday to Saturday, all day. Every Saturday morning, a market is offered, while on Wednesday afternoons in July and August, the city offers a summer market. December is the scene of a charming Christmas market.
The Z'accros, in July, is a street arts festival featuring various shows.
Every summer, Nevers-plage reproduces the maritime life on the banks of the Loire, and the municipality takes advantage to organize various cultural or sporting events.
Jazz Festival Nevers offers annual concerts of artists from around the world in the fall.
In October, Nevers in Vif hosts the best of the French rock scene.
At the beginning of December, the Salon des auteurs nivernais highlights the local edition through meetings and dedications.