In this second post dedicated to Besancon we make a visit to the Citadel (UNESCO monument) and its museums, to the genial astronomical clock, the original Museum of Time and the art museum, although under renovation.
Only to visit the citadel it takes at least half a day! You can get at the entrance of the fortress [47.23193,6.03186] by bus (line 17 starts from the parking lot of Rodia from April to October), with the motorhome or on foot, making a trek uphill, pleasant, but tough!
For motorhomes there is no problem to park (1.20 / hour – max. 5 €), the road has a couple of bottlenecks, but if the bus can make it…
The citadel is open all year round, but hours may change depending on the season. Have a look at their website for accurate information. Entry costs € 9.60, which is quite a lot but consider it includes the three museums that are located within, a zoo, an exhibition of modern art and of course the visit to a fortress in perfect condition which offers fantastic panoramic views!
Above: a smart idea for making attractive the restructuring sites within the citadel.
Below: the entrance to the memorial museum dedicated to the Holocaust. A summary of the events presented in an exceptional way.
Above: The explicit memorial to the victims of the Nazis, to the right the statue of Vauban, the military engineer, designer of the fortress.
Below a temporary exhibition of sculptures by Ousmane Sow.
On the side a window of the museum of natural science, which shows what happens if you leave food in the kitchen! And if the Insectarium is a must see, the Noctarium it is not to be missed for any reason. It is a unique opportunity to see nocturnal animals otherwise impossible to observe with the naked eye and play with your senses when it is in the dark! 😉
The imposing cathedral of Saint-Jean, in the underground of which it is possible to see the astronomical clock. Guided tours to the clock, a masterpiece of mechanical engineering, are held every hour from 9:50 to 17:50, except lunch hour, every day except Tuesdays (during winter also wednesdays).
The one of Time is another museum that should not be missed by lovers of mechanics and technology, but also simply for lovers of the beautiful. The museum is closed on Mondays, entry costs €5, but it is free on Sundays and all public holidays. From the Foucault pendulum to digital technology, you will see examples of all kinds of watches and related equipment, as the first machine for the exact time by phone… have you ever wondered how it worked in the analog days?
Last but not least, the museum of fine arts and archeology. It is open every day except Tuesdays, offering a wide selection of works of art from all periods and a good archaeological collection. Since undergoing renovations, the entrance is free for all until the end of the work, do not miss this opportunity!