Poitiers
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Poitiers

By Dmitry Petrounin Dmitry Petrounin Section editor Profile

Our Editorial team's advice

The capital of the Poitou-Charentes region is mid-way between Paris and Bordeaux. The old settlement of 'Lemonum' was built on a promontory between the Clain and Boivre valleys.
Known for the nearby Battle of Tours, at which Charles Martel halted the progress of the Muslims, the 'city of a hundred churches' has an exceptional architectural heritage in the form of 80 listed and protected monuments.
Today, Poitiers offers an excellent quality of life, boasting all the advantages of a city in a reasonably sized town. Allow yourself to wander around its ancient streets, and just enjoy!

To see

The 'Ecoutez Voir!' festival that takes place in Poitiers Sud in June. It is a music festival that brings together more than 200 amateur and professional artists in different places around Poitiers Sud to offer free performances of jazz, reggae, rap, chamber music, plays, clowns, dance and more!

Les polychromies: every summer evening, tourists can enjoy the polychromatic light projected onto the façade of Notre-Dame-la-Grande Church. Multi-coloured lights light up the Romanesque cathedral and add an enchanting touch to your summer evenings in Poitiers.

To do

Visit Futuroscope, a theme park dedicated to the world of multimedia, audiovisual, and cinematographic techniques. The park celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2012. A virtual sightseeing tour of Vienna is offered through a digital projection on a 300m² screen with lateral images associated with the effects in the room and seats that move with the tour. This incredibly feature allows you to discover the region as if you were really there. 'Dynamic Vienna is an unbelievable visual and sensory experience that should not be missed.'

Those who are curious about nature should visit the Jardin des Sens, where they can observe the plants and animals that live here and even do a little gardening. Its name, which means Gardens of Senses, comes from the fact that it was created with specific plants that are meant to awaken all the senses. Your sense of smell, taste, touch and sight will be awakened all at once, while the the sound of the bamboos swaying to the wind or the outdoor theatre will pique your hearing. It is a place of exchange and discovery that allows you to open yourself to the environment and nature.

pros

  • +  The Romanesque architecture.
  • +  Lots of gardens.
  • +  Very affordable for students.

cons

  • -  The sky is often grey.
  • -  The city centre is not very big.

To think about

Those who wish to discover Poitiers on foot or by bike can take advantage of the Ville-Nature circuit that allows you to visit the city and its surroundings by following hiking trails and marked trails that cover more than 250 miles. There are different circuits to suit everyone's tastes and level of fitness.

To avoid

If you like the frenzy of big cities, you might find Poitiers to be a little too quiet for you.

To try

Poitiers' culinary specialities have a rich and ancient tradition when it comes to gastronomy. During your stay in Poitiers you can taste various local products such as walnut oil, goat cheese, lamb and goat meat, river fish, crayfish, eels, and more. Stuffed poitevin is probably the most famous dish. It is made with green vegetables, pork belly, and bread crumbs or flour.

To bring back

A bag of nougatines from Poitou: a sweet pale pink candy filled with crunchy and sweet nougat. These nougatines have been part of the gastronomic heritage of Poitiers since 1894.