Signposted cycling routes

On the banks of the Rhône, orchards and heritage

Vienne

From Antiquity to the Renaissance
 

On this loop, plan to make a long stop to enjoy the cultural heritage of the city of Vienne. Then ride through the area’s orchards to reach the Château de Roussillon, the only Renaissancestyle castle in Isère.

Vienne

The highlight of this route is the city of Vienne. Officially recognized as a “City of Art and History,” Vienne is home to more than 40 monuments and points of interest. Built to follow the contours of a hillside, the city’s ancient theatre was one of the largest of its kind in Roman times, and could seat about 13,000 spectators. It boasts magnificent acoustics, and is home to a world-renowned jazz festival that takes place annually in July.
The Temple of Augustus and Livia is another monument to the city’s Gallo-Roman heritage. Built between 20 and 10 BC, the temple is especially well preserved because it was transformed into a church in the 5th or 6th century.

Saint-Romain-en-Gal

The Saint-Romain-en-Gal archaeological site is one of the largest areas of Gallo-Roman ruins in all of France. Formerly linked to the ancient city of Vienne, the archaeological site is located at the heart of a seven-hectare park. Here you can explore the thermal baths, houses, shops, and workshops that have been revealed over the course of successive excavations.
The majestic Cathédrale Saint-Maurice houses several relics of Saint Maurice. The cathedral’s varying architecture is evidence of the different stages of construction, from the 4th century to the Middle Ages, followed by the 19th century restorations.

Roussillon

The Château de Roussillon, a registered historic landmark, is the only Renaissance style chateau in Isère. Its Italian elegance is the work of the illustrious architect Sebastiano Serlio. The chateau was commissioned by Cardinal François de Tournon, a personal adviser to François I.

 

The wines of Vienne

Already renowned as early as the 1st century, the wines of north Vienne were brought up to date to suit modern tastes in 1995 by three friends : Pierre Gaillard, François Villard and Yves Cuilleron. These passionate wine enthusiasts decided to breathe new life into these wines by using modern techniques (natural vinifi cation and aging in new barrels). Since the 1980s, their work has brought about a revival of the fruity wines of the northern Rhône.
With the same goals in mind, the association Vitis Viennae unites around 15 wine growers who are working to preserve the vineyards on the left bank of the Rhône, between Vienne and Chasse-sur-Rhône.
Vitis Viennae Association: vitis.vienna@hotmail.fr
www.vinsdevienne.com
Pear eau-de-vie
The region surrounding Vienne is well suited for growing Williams pears. Consequently, the area has developed a reputation for its excellent pear eau-de-vie, which is produced at the Colombier distillery in Villette-de-Vienne. Surrounded by 100-year old trees and a magnifi cent pear orchard, the distillery is open to visitors upon appointment. You can taste and purchase the distillery’s eau-de-vie, as well as their poached pears and plain or spiced preserves…
www.poire-colombier.com

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On the banks of the Rhône, orchards and heritage

France

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