Rouen is a Norman city in a prime location between Paris and the port of Le Havre on the banks of the Seine.
In medieval times this made the city a merchant’s paradise, and Rouen grew dramatically in the 14th and 15th centuries when traders settled near the Rive Droite and built themselves handsome timber-framed homes.
Hundreds of these old buildings are still standing along adorable cobblestone streets.
Rouen also serves up world-beating landmarks to steal your heart, whether it’s a working medieval clock, a record-breaking cathedral or sights that recall the final days in the life of Joan of Arc.
Lets explore the best things to do in Rouen:
1. Rouen Cathedral
For four years at the end of the 1870s Rouen Cathedral was the tallest building in the world.
This was after the neo-gothic tower was finished, replacing a renaissance one destroyed by lightning earlier that century.
There are some highly distinguished burials at this breathtaking building: namely Richard the Lionheart, and the early Norman rulers like Rollo and William I. Many of the stained glass windows made in the 1200s survive, and there are some gorgeous ones to see in the south transept that date from the 1500s.
The cathedral’s delicate western facade was the subject of some of Monet’s most famous paintings: He made 30 between 1892 and 1893, capturing it in different weather and at different times of the year.