Amiens, Capital of Picardy, France

In En-Route, Europe, France, Our Journeys, Trip-Types, Unesco, World Travel by JanisLeave a Comment

Towering history & riverside strolls…

Our mini road trip in western Belgium has now taken a southern detour, and we’ve headed across the border into France, to Amiens.

Place du Don, Amiens, France

This little adventure has unintentionally turned into a historic trip around the First and Second World War conflict regions. As we left Ypres, we weaved our way across the open countryside via Ors (that’s a story for a later date) & arrived in Amiens.

Amiens is located on the banks of the River Somme, and although we have lost count of the number of times we have visited France we have never visited the Somme region. So, we donned our comfy shoes and went to discover.

Looking over Quai Bélu, Amiens, France




What did we find?

The most prominent structure in the city is Our Lady in Amiens the 13th-century cathedral. This stunning Gothic church is the largest in France, and it certainly has a presence.

The Cathedral at dusk, Amiens, France
The vaulted nave in the Cathedral, Amiens, France

As you walk in the height of the vaulted nave is incredible, it stands 138.8 feet (42.3 metres). When you walk through the cathedral you just keep looking up, it is quite amazing.

16th century stained glass window in the Cathedral, Amiens, France
Rose Stained Glass window in the Cathedral, Amiens, France

What I found unusual was all around the outside of the choir stalls were large polychrome sculptures depicting the lives of John the Baptist and St Firmin (the first bishop of Amiens). There appeared to be a recurring theme of murder and death as the story unfolded.

Inside the Cathedral, Amiens, France

One of the sculptures to look out for is the Weeping Angel created in 1636 by Nicolas Blasset.

If you look carefully, you can see that the little angel with its outstretched wings, is leaning on the top of a skull.

The Weeping Angel, Amiens, France

Did you know?

UNESCO – That Amiens Cathedral was inscribed as an UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1981.




Saint-Leu Quarter

It’s easy to why the Saint-Leu quarter of Amiens is quite a draw, it’s a lovely area to stroll around day and night. The River Somme being the main focal point, however, follow the canals, and you’re lead through some delightful parts of the quarter.

The Quai Bélu at dusk, Amiens, France

Take a wander a couple of streets back from the quay, and the lanes are so peaceful.

A view along the River Somme, Amiens, France

Around this vicinity years, ago were tanneries & butchers. Today there are still some lovely examples of the local architecture.

The colourful lanes, Amiens, France
Along a canal, Amiens, France

However, don’t resist a stroll along the quay and soak up the chilled atmosphere amongst the restaurants, bars and cafes.

The River Somme, Amiens, France

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Good to know

Floating Gardens – If time allows try and visit the Hortillonnages (Floating Gardens), the boat tours run from April to October. However, if you just want to stroll around, then head to the towpath.




Deserving Lunch

To ensure we soaked up the full French experience we thought it was best we stopped for lunch and sampled the local delicacies. Who can blame us?

Lunch Platter, Amiens, France

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Visited the historic city of Amiens and tried the local delicacies, what did you think of “ la ficelle Picarde"?




Jules Verne

The famous author Jules Verne lived in Amiens with his wife from 1857 until his death 1905.

The Jules Verne Monument, Amiens, France

It was in Amiens that Jules Verne wrote many of his celebrated novels, for example; Around the World in Eighty Days, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, & Journey to the Centre of the Earth.

Jules Verne House, Amiens, France
The mural at Jules Verne Museum, Amiens, France

In 1882, he & his wife moved into Maison de la Tour, which is now Jules Verne House and a museum to Jules Verne.

Globe tower on the museum, Amiens, France
The grave of Jules Verne, Amiens, France




Roll up, Roll up

Just a short stroll from the author’s house is the Jules Verne Circus, opened in 1889 by the man himself. The 16-sided theatre regularly holds performances, along with guided tours of the wonderful venue.

Jules Verne Circus, Amiens, France

Tempted to?

Discover more of northern France and create your own tour around the poignant battlefields of the Somme. It’s so easy to do this on a road trip, SIXT car hire cover all budgets and allow you to pick up and drop off at different destinations.




Go for a wander

As we stroll further around the city, there are some lovely buildings and monuments dotted around.

The Dewailly clock is very striking, although, it is actually a replica made in 1999, as the original dating from 1892 named after the local Mayor, corroded away.

The Dewailly clock, Amiens, France

The Belfry of Amiens which is in Place au Fil dates from 13th-century and is a symbol of the City’s independence.

It stands 171 feet (52 metres) high and was once used as a prison and an arms store.

Due to the damage, it suffered during the World War II it was completely restored in the late 1980’s.

Belfry of Amiens, Amiens, France

Directly opposite Amiens Cathedral is Maison du Pelerin.

This timber-framed building is one of the few remaining original houses in Amiens, this was a result of the bombardments it endured during WWI & WWII.

Maison du Pelerin, Amiens, France




Remembered

2018 commemorates the centenary of the Battle of Amiens.

Signs of its remembrance could be seen on the walls around the city.

Among Us, Amiens, France

The pictures were quite touching, and the look in their eyes conveyed even more.

In memory - Among Us, Amiens, France




Where we dined

We found a couple of lovely restaurants in Amiens, the first was Brasserie de l’horloge, where Gary couldn’t resist the steak tartare, and I succumb to their profiteroles.

However, it was at Bistrot du Boucher where we tried the local speciality of “la ficelle Picarde”, which is an oven-baked crêpe filled with ham, mushrooms & cheese.

Very tasty & quite filling, although it helps with a chilled bottle of Pinot Noir.

La ficelle Picarde, Amiens, France

Oh, and I may have had a chocolate fondant.

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Inspired to visit Amiens

Stroll through France’s largest church, visit Jules Verne’s home. Why not stay for the evening and enjoy a chilled drink along the Quai Bélu.

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Amiens, Capital of Picardy, France

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About the Author

Janis

Janis, the co-founder of Our World for You, was born in London and raised in Kent and the Isle of Wight. Along with Gary her partner, they have been travelling part time since 1995. In 2016, they decided that enough was enough with the 9 to 5, so armed with the knowledge and experience that they had gained on their adventures, that they wanted to inspire others to travel the world near and far.

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