Whether you want to relax in a park, drink from the springs or stroll through museums full of enchanting collections, this French city is for you.
Relax and unwind in the spa town of Vichy, a charming place where Napoleon III and his wife once lived. Here, you’ll find opulent buildings, beautiful parks and palaces used by royalty from all over the world.
In the 1860s, Vichy became known as “Queen of the Water Towns” for its famed spring waters and the hotels, casinos and homes that were built by the decree of Napoleon III. Visit nowadays and you will see that many of the hotels have been turned into residential properties. However, there is still a sense of peace and serenity surrounding Vichy.
Begin your tour of the town by exploring the outdoors. Stop by the Parc des Sources, the oldest park in Vichy, to sit under a chestnut tree and read a book in the shade. Head to the north of the park to find Hall des Sources, a glass pavilion holding some of the drinkable spring waters of the area. You can even see the Grille and Chomel springs before they go through the faucet.
During the day, plan a visit to the Musée des Arts d’Afrique et d’Asie. This museum has a collection of over 4,000 objects collected from former French colonies. Later, go inside the Église Saint-Blaise to marvel at the sparkling ceiling mosaics and stained glass completed in 1923.
In the evening, get tickets to a show at the Opéra de Vichy, built around 1900. Note the bright white exterior with its wide steps and beautiful arches. Take a guided tour of the venue if the performances are sold out.
To visit Vichy, fly into Lyon or the Clermont-Ferrand Auvergne Airport from destinations across Europe. Alternatively, take a national train to its main railway station. Pack for rainfall if you are coming in April or May.
A combination of beautiful architecture, well-manicured grounds and fascinating history make Vichy a wonderful travel destination.