It won’t shock you to hear that Champagne-Ardenne is the home of the world’s favourite sparkling wine.
Many people will spend entire holidays touring the prestigious Champagne houses and descending into the cool Crayères, chalk caves where vintners have stored champagne for hundreds of years.
The city of Reims is steeped in Champagne history, and also just happens to be where nearly all the French kings were crowned.
Yes, there’s far more to Champagne-Ardennes than just the drink: Charles de Gaulle called the region “home”, and there’s a first-rate theme park, sober war memorials, rolling countryside and neatly-conserved medieval towns like Troyes.
Lets explore the best things to do in Champagne-Ardenne:
1. The Champagne Trail
Few beverages share champagne’s reputation for luxury and prestige, and you can immerse yourself in its culture and history along a 250-mile designated route.
This runs along the plain and over hills furrowed with green vines tended by growers cultivating pinot noir, pinot meunier and chardonnay grapes since the 1600s.
You’ll pay homage to your favourite brands, learn about secondary fermentation and, of course, taste world-class wine.
Whatever your plans, there are certain experiences you shouldn’t leave out, like entering the Crayères, cool medieval chalk quarries where wines have been stored for centuries.
Veuve Clicquot is essential, with 24 kilometres of galleries, while those at Ruinart reach heights of 50 metres.