Explore lively streets to discover an ancient city reinvented from its initial settlement on the Loire River banks over 2,000 years ago.
With its significant role in historical events from antiquity to the French Revolution, Nantes oozes national heritage. Study modern monuments and exciting culture trails to experience an art-rich city. Art festivals and diverse architectural flourishes have redefined the former province of Brittany’s medieval capital.
Nantes’ varied architecture is a major attraction. Learn about the city’s former reign as a Brittany icon when you visit the Château des ducs de Bretagne. From here, see the ruins of the Roman city walls and St. Peter’s Gate. Explore Le Bouffay, Nantes’ medieval heart, to see the Gothic Nantes Cathedral and Psalette mansion. Admire the ornate belfry towering above the Sainte-Croix Church. For modern architectural highlights, investigate the magnificent glass roof of the Passage Pommeraye and the 20th-century landmark Station Prouvé.
Admire sweeping city views from soaring Tour de Bretagne. Stroll along the Loire River banks and see intriguing public artworks on the Quai des Antilles. Follow Le Voyage à Nantes, a green-painted line weaving along miles of inner-city pavement to highlight a curated selection of public artworks, architectural treasures and monuments. This art project is also the force behind the Estuaire Nantes – Saint Nazaire art trail, which displays 30 artworks along the Loire River’s estuary. See more art displayed in the Fine Arts Museum, while zoological displays and minerals are showcased at the Natural History Museum of Nantes. Enjoy an Angers-Nantes Opéra performance at the Théâtre Graslin or catch a giant marionette show by the Royal de Luxe street theater company.
Have a break at a traditional terraced café or restaurant and enjoy Nantes’ fantastic offerings of fresh seafood and local produce. Try oysters, langoustines, cheeses and regional pastries. A short distance from the city, find a collection of vineyards growing Nantes’ celebrated muscadet wines.
Reach Nantes via plane or rail. A tram network facilitates getting around the city. Learn about Nantes’ fascinating heritage as you tour around the city’s historic seaport, medieval quarter and contemporary art trails.