Nevers, the Nivernais capital famous for its blue pottery, is also the home of the ducal palace, former residence of the dukes and counts of Nevers, a remarkable cathedral and many more architectural and cultural gems. A few other characterful communities are also worth a visit: the medieval town of Clamecy, the listed village of Arthel, the town of La Charité-sur-Loire and its big priory church, the floral village of Moulins-Engilbert, and Decize, a fortified settlement standing elegantly on a rocky island in the Loire.
History and architecture-lovers will be interested in the majestic Romanesque Church of St. Reverian, a listed building, Bazoches Castle, where the famous Marshal de Vauban lived, and the Castle of the Bishops of Nevers in Prémery. Also make time for a little detour via Ternant, where the church contains some remarkable 15th-century triptychs; the Loire Museum, about the activities related to France's great wild river; and the village of Saint-Amand-en-Puisaye, known for its pottery, a skill dating back to the Middle Ages.
Morvan is the number one natural area in the Nivernais. Its granite massif is an endless source of lakes, forests and green, rolling landscapes, which you can explore along the waymarked trails. In the Nivernais part of Morvan, the lakes of Pannecière and Les Settons are inviting places for water sports and sunbathing. In urban Morvan, Luzy has a museum in the Barons' Tower, a relic of the old castle, while the heights of Château-Chinon, its historic capital, offer stunning views. The Butte de Montenoison hill also offers a lovely viewpoint over the Nivernais and Morvan landscapes. At the Bec d'Allier, the Loire and Allier rivers meet to offer a surprising natural site. The Canal du Nivernais, meanwhile, provides a peaceful and restful place to take a break by the water.
After all that effort, you deserve a reward! Clamecy sausage, Morvan honey, négus, a delicious chocolate-flavoured toffee, or a little glass of Pouilly-Fumé are a treat for the taste buds.