Depart from the hotel to explore Rennes, city of art and history and capital of Brittany. It is also a university town and a European high-tech community.
Discover Rennes along the cobbled streets lined with half-timbered houses, a city that offers great cultural events day and night.
You will be surprised by the diversity of Rennes’ heritage, from the Gallic Roman period to the present day, which you can discover through the many museums and exhibitions.
You can also find more information and things to do at www.tourisme-rennes.com/
THE 10 ESSENTIAL SITES IN THE CAPITAL OF BRITTANY
THE SAINT-YVES CHAPEL
In a flamboyant Gothic style, this renovated 15th century chapel was built for the Saint-Yves hospital, before being converted into a hardware store in the 19th century.
Today it houses the Rennes Tourist Office where you can get a lot of information on guided tours and get a tourist map of the city. The precious interior and exterior decorations of the chapel are teeming with astonishing sculptures: animals sticking out their tongues, sleeping rabbits, mischievous cats, mischievous or amused faces. You will be surprised by the number of looks on you!
PERMANENT EXHIBITION “RENNES, MÉTROPOLE D’ART ET D’HISTOIRE” VISIBLE AT THE OPENING HOURS OF THE TOURIST OFFICE.
Roman high altar, monumental grand organ, remarkable paintings and vaults, discover the treasures of a cathedral rebuilt and decorated in the second half of the 19th century. Saint-Pierre Cathedral hosted important moments in the history of Brittany and France, such as the coronation of the Dukes and Duchesses of Brittany.
OPEN EVERY DAY FROM 9:30 AM TO 12 PM AND FROM 3 PM TO 6 PM
THE MORDELAISES DOORS – LES PORTES MORDELAISES
Rebuilt in the 15th century, this building, which is characterized by its two symmetrical towers enhanced with machicolations with double drawbridges, was the main entrance to the fortified city. Also called “royal door”, in reference to the Dukes of Brittany who before being crowned at Saint-Pierre Cathedral, crossed the door after having taken an oath to defend the freedoms of Brittany.
LA PLACE DES LICES
A former medieval “closed field” where knights’ tournaments were held, the name of Lices was known in 1337 thanks to a certain Bertrand Du Guesclin who carried out his first fight there. Bordered to the north by large 17th century half-timbered or stone mansions and to the south by two metal halls designed by Jean-Baptiste Martenot in 1869, in Baltard style, since 1622 this square has hosted the Lices market!
Having become one of the largest markets in France, it is at dawn every Saturday that the Marché des Lices comes alive to present you with stalls that explode in colors, smells and flavors. No need to resist this festive atmosphere, the visit of which can only end with the tasting of the essential and famous “sausage pancake”!
THE PARLIAMENT OF BRITTANY – LE PARLEMENT DE BRETAGNE
Designed by Salomon de Brosse, it was spared the great fire of 1720, but burned down in 1994. Containing 17th century French pictorial gems, the Palace of the Parliament was reborn thanks to exemplary mobilization and renovation. Inside, prestige is embodied in the French-style ceilings, sculpted and gilded woodwork, allegorical canvases… of which the Grand ‘Chambre constitutes the jewel of this exceptional decor.
VISITS THROUGHOUT THE YEAR ON COMPULSORY REGISTRATION AT THE TOURIST OFFICE.
PHONE. : 02.99.67.11.66
After the fire of 1720, Jacques Gabriel, architect to King Louis XV, imagined bringing together in one and the same construction, on a new square, the Town Hall, the presidial and the clock tower. Curved, it refers to the buildings built by the great architects Le Vau and Hardouin-Mansart. The north wing of the Town Hall houses the “Rennes Pantheon” erected in memory of the soldiers who died in the 14-18 war. In the wedding hall, famous Bretons such as Duguay-Trouin, Laënnec, Renan, Chateaubriand, are part of the decor. Look up!
IN SUMMER, FREE GUIDED TOURS OFFERED BY THE TOURIST OFFICE.
Charles Millardet responds to the eighteenth-century curved layout of the Town Hall facing it, with the roundness of what is called “The Theater”. This rounded facade, protected by muses sculpted by François Lanno, hides many other original features within it, such as a flowerbed, not located on the ground floor, but on the first floor.
The famous 44 steps to access it made the headlines of the time! Among the smallest operas in France, discover all that it has to do with its sets and a rich lyrical program!
A little romance and elegance with the discovery of the wonders of Parc du Thabor, where even “Hell” is a pleasant green theater. This former garden of the monks of the Benedictine Saint-Melaine abbey was designed by Denis Bühler, a famous 19th century landscape designer.
This 10 hectare park combines a French garden, an English park, a cave, a bandstand, an aviary and an exceptional rose garden with more than 2,000 varieties! Let yourself be guided through one of the most beautiful gardens in France.
OPEN ALL YEAR ROUND, HOURS VARIABLE DEPENDING ON THE SEASONS.
Since 1794, the works of the Museum of Fine Arts in Rennes have continued to expand, offering a panorama of the history of art from Antiquity to the present day. Let yourself be surprised by the impressionism of Gustave Caillebotte, “The Tiger Hunt” by Rubens and “The Newborn” by Georges de la Tour.
INFORMATION AND TIMETABLE: www.mbar.org
LES CHAMPS LIBRES
An innovative cultural site designed by the architect Christian de Portzamparc, the Champs Libres brings together in the heart of Rennes: the Brittany Museum, the Science Center and the Métropole Library. Exhibitions and installations, visual arts, digital arts, literary and artistic performances come together, helping to make it a real place of cultural effervescence.
INFORMATION AND TIMETABLE: www.leschampslibres.fr