Fougères is a commune in Brittany of North-Western France. It currently has a population of 20 000 people and is a historic area of France. It is most famous for its Chateau de Fougères, which has a medieval design. Fougères lies just 325 kilometers outside of Paris.
Things to do & Places to see in Fougères, France
1. La Château de Fougeres
Fougères is home to one of the most impressive fortresses in the whole of Europe. The Château de Fougères is a pure example of what castle life as like in the middle ages. The castle was built on a rock that emerged from the Nançon river, causing it to be surrounded by water. Creating a natural moat. The castle consists of three different sections and sports a total of 13 towers. It originally started off as a wooden fortress in the early medieval period but was later rebuilt in 1166 using stone after it was destroyed by King Henry II of England. The stone used to rebuild it gives it a very rugged yet plain look to it, with the simple sculpted shapes that are unique to the medieval architectural period. Visiting the château is almost like time traveling back in time right into a fairy-tale.
The château is open every day of the year from 10 am until 12:30 pm and again from 2 pm until 5 pm(January-May, September-December), and then from 9:30 am until 12:30 pm and again from from 2 pm until 6:30 pm (May-September). Cost of admission is 6€ if you are older than 18 years, otherwise it is free.
2. Fougères Belfry
Fougère's Belfry is another famous landmark that the area has to offer. The grand granite tower was built between the 14th and 15th century and is made of granite. It is further decorated by adding stone brick to its exterior and was finished off with a beautiful gothic balustrade. The tower has been instilling life into the town for many centuries.
4. Eglise Saint-Sulpice de Fougères
Another popular monument found in Fougères is none other the church of Saint Sulpice. Found at the foot of the great castle, the parish church is the heart of the lower part of town. It was evidently built between the 15th and 18th century as it has a beautiful gothic manner about it. The parish church served as a large part of the Fougèrais history. Thus it was naturally classified as a historic monument in 1910. The church features some beautiful examples of stain glass windows. They were most recently added in the 19th and 20th centuries, as only a few small parts of the original windows from the 16th century remains to this day. It also home to four beautiful paintings that are incorporated into the wall of choir. The paintings emanate the themes of The Resurrection, The Annunciation, The Adoration of the Shepherds andThe Adoration of the Magi. The church's interior is extremely beautiful. In addition to the paintings, the church is also home to some magnificent sculptures and statues that are scattered among its interior.
4. The Public gardens of Fougères
The gardens lie on the side of the Saint Leonard church in the upper town. It overlooks the lower town and thus provides breathtaking views of Saint Sulpice church, the castle, as well as a beautiful view of the countryside that surrounds the area. The gardens are beautifully decorated with paths, ferns and a wonderful display of floral arrangements. It also features a basin with a pretty fountain from the 17th century. The pathway leads from the public gardens straight into the garden of Val Nançon, which is a mosaic garden. This garden lies under the ramparts. The gardens are open everyday to the public, free of charge, from 8 am until midnight between April and October, then from 8 am until 10 pm between October and April.
5. Eglise Saint-Leonards de Fougères
Sitting high up in the upper town of Fougères is the charming Eglise Saint-Leonards, a parish church.The presbytery was originally built in the 12th century but was later reconstructed in the 15th and 16th centuries. It was further expanded in the 19th century into what can be seen today. The flamboyant gothic styled church has a beautiful rose window incorporated into its facade. This window is the oldest stain-glass window in the whole of Brittany. It is called the medallion of Saint Benoît. It was created in the 12 century. The church also features a tall bell-tower that is open to the public during the summer months. It is from this high point that one can experience a whole panoramic view of Fougères. Including the castle and Saint-Sulpice that lies beneath it, as well as the picturesque french countryside that surrounds it. If you wish to view Fougères for all it has to offer this is definitely a must visit destination.
How Do I Get Here From Paris?
Getting to Fougères is straight forward as taking two trains. Initially you would take a train from Paris to Rennes in Normandy. This would take around just over two hours. You would then have a small transfer time until you can catch a train from Rennes to Fougères. Transfer times just depend on which liner you choose as well the time you choose to travel. On average you are looking at anything from 60€ to 80€ for a second class ticket. This would include both train rides. The travel time between Rennes and Fougères is just over an hour. In total you are looking at about 4-5 hours of traveling depending on your transfer time.
There is also the option of hiring a car to travel to Fougères. It is around 325 kilometers away thus it would take around 3 and a half hours of traveling by car. This would allow you to soak in the scenery at a leisurely pace, whilst also being able to make stops where you want, when you want.