With a rich historical heritage, La Chaise-Dieu is a must for anyone wanting to discover the Haute-Loire. Its radiant gothic style abbey and his tour, its Echo room, its XNUMXth century tapestries, a unique treasure in the world. But if for once, we make you discover the casadean city through what you are not used to seeing? Follow us !

La Chaise-Dieu, an old fortified town

We know his gothic radiant abbey and its unmissable treasures, such as its famous fresco of the Danse Macabre and its amazing echo room. We also know its medieval facades in the heart of the city... But what we notice a little less often are its defensive characteristics. La Chaise-Dieu is indeed an old fortified city of which there are still unmistakable vestiges today...

From the twelfth century, The Chaise-Dieu was surrounded by a heavy enclosure. Impenetrable. Rebuilt in the 1426th century after the great fire of XNUMX. In the heart of the town, at the corner of rue des Fossés, stands an old fortified house. There Cloze house, which, flanked by its advanced turret and its walkway with battlements, is one of the most eloquent vestiges of this period.

Cloze house in La Chaise-Dieu in Haute-Loire, Auvergne

Just like the fortified gate of the abbey, called the gate of For, unique remains of the walls and turrets that surrounded the abbey. And the Clementine tower neighbour, real XNUMXth century fortified keep. It is the highest point of all La Chaise-Dieu, dominating the abbey church with all its height. Its exceptional buttresses and its fine loopholes leave no doubt about the defensive nature of the construction.

The extraordinary biodiversity of the 14 Flemish tapestries

You surely know the extraordinary Flemish tapestries from La Chaise-Dieu ? A unique national treasure in the world dating from the 70th century, today protected by the old walls of the Casadean abbey. That is XNUMX linear meters of scenes from the Old and New Testaments… But did you observe them well? They hold many mysteries...

Flemish tapestries from La Chaise-Dieu in Haute-Loire, Auvergne

Like this rich bestiary populated by both realistic and fantastic animals: lions, whales and sea monsters and other demonic goats. But also rabbits, chickens, peacocks, sheep, doves, snakes, toads and ducks. Can you find them all? It's a great survey to conduct as a family, what do you say?

Harder now, plants! They are also very numerous on these woven works. Although presenting many chimeric plants, some are recognizable, common and loaded with religious symbolism: daisy, lily of the valley, primrose, violet, small periwinkle, foxglove, carnation, rose, columbine, pomegranate, strawberry, forget-me-not, dandelion, milk thistle, vine, apple tree…  

The extraordinary biodiversity of the 14 Flemish tapestries of La Chaise-Dieu in Haute-Loire, Auvergne

Even more astonishing, we also recognize a slipper of Venus and many other known plants but here represented with unusual colors... Good research!

In the forest, a unique place that is both a bookstore and a wine cellar

Right in the center of town, on Place de la Fontaine, between the friendly and charismatic terraces of restaurants and cafés, nestles a place like no other: the bookshop In the forest. A bookstore, therefore, rural and modern… but not only. In the forest is also a place for meetings, exchanges, a place of culture and shows (readings aloud, conferences, workshops, etc.). But also a place of discovery and delicacies.

In the forest, a unique place that is both a bookstore and a wine cellar in La Chaise-Dieu in Haute-Loire, Auvergne

Since the bookshop is also a wine cellar, a beer cellar and a tea room. In the forest, “we read, we drink and we live there”, summarizes nicely Stéphanie, the manager who chooses herself the books she puts on sale. And some are nuggets! You can place an order among more than 5000 books, by going directly to La Chaise-Dieu, by calling or by email at [email protected]

Wine cellar In the forest at La Chaise-Dieu in Haute-Loire, Auvergne

About the wine cellar, it is guaranteed free of pesticides and GMOs. Fabulous isn't it? Sensitive to the environment and ecology, Stéphanie makes sure to select winegrowers and winegrowers in line with her principles. You will find wines ranging from Forez to Sicily, via Austria, Germany, Italy, a way to abolish borders and broaden the palate. And of course, you can drink fruit juice, coffee, tea.

The La Chaise-Dieu festival and its treasures from 4e Article

Finally, what would be La Chaise-Dieu without its famous classical music festival ? A grandiose and unique event in France, where a scene is directly built in the choir of an ancestral abbey (yes, yes!). Ten days of concerts marked by the presence of major national and international symphonic ensembles, prodigious musicians and singers with golden voices.

The La Chaise-Dieu festival in Haute-Loire, Auvergne

Every year in August, La Chaise-Dieu is thus transformed into an enchanted parenthesis where music resounds and makes the vaults of Saint-Robert Abbey. Dusted off, they find a new youth every summer.

Saint Robert abbey church
43160 The Chaise-Dieu
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