Champagne - Reims Guide
The historic City of Reims is dominated by its awesome Gothic cathedral, one of four UNESCO World Heritage sites, the others being the Tau Palace, the Saint-Remi Basilica and the Saint-Remi Museum. The City also boasts a 3rd century Roman triumphal arch, an imposing Renaissance town hall, bishops' palace, theatre and several museums.
On a stroll through the town, start at the Porte de Mars, a Roman gateway from the year 200 AD, the old entrance to the city. It is one of only four remaining from what was once the capital of the Roman province of Belgae (Belgium). Along the Rue de Mars, you can see the lovely mosaics depicting the champagne-making process on the building opposite the town hall. The 3rd century Cryptoportic, a semi-underground Roman gallery, a relic of the Roman city of Durocortorum, is a little further on at the Place du Forum. Above ground, the Gothic-Renaissance mansion of the Musée-Hôtel Le Vergeur was home of Veuve Cliquot, and donated to the city by a wealthy champagne dealer. It houses some superb engravings by Dürer.
As well as the historical sights, there are around 10 champagne houses to tour within the city, several of which you can visit without an appointment including Taittinger, Mumm and Piper-Heidsieck
The tourist office in Reims can provide you with maps and information on opening times and details regarding the champagne houses. They also have audio- guided tours of the city available.