Dyon York

Living France - - WHERE TO LIVE -

If you’ve ever wished that you could live in a by­gone era, a move to Di­jon may be the clos­est you can get. Sur­rounded by vil­lages where time seems to stand still, an­cient vine­yards and golden sun­flower fields, Bur­gundy’s cap­i­tal is co­cooned by ves­tiges of the past. Like in its twin city of York, there is a feel­ing that his­tory is around ev­ery cor­ner: along the me­dieval streets lined with Re­nais­sance-style build­ings, half-tim­bered homes and in the city’s world-fa­mous mu­se­ums that house paint­ings and sculp­tures from Di­jon’s golden age dur­ing the 14th and 15th cen­turies. Ac­claimed for its col­lec­tion of clas­si­cal art, Di­jon now has some con­tem­po­rary art and de­sign to its name, as well as old favourites such as the Musée des Beaux-Arts and Musée Rude.

Di­jon is served by a sleek tram sys­tem but lo­cals still favour get­ting about on foot as much of the city is pedes­tri­anised. On your walk­a­bouts, you can opt to get your heart rac­ing even more by climb­ing the 316 steps of the Tour Philippe le Bon in the Palais des Ducs where, from the top of the tower you will be re­warded with panoramic city views – a great time-out ac­tiv­ity and a per­fect way to show off Di­jon to vis­it­ing guests.

Of course, many peo­ple know Di­jon for its mus­tard, but there is much more to the city’s win­ing and din­ing scene, and lo­cals here en­joy in­dulging in rich and hearty cui­sine that the re­gion is famed for. Place de la Libéra­tion, a square bor­dered by 15th-cen­tury build­ings and en­livened by buskers and tin­kling wa­ter foun­tains, is a pop­u­lar spot for en­joy­ing a pre-din­ner apéri­tif with friends .

It’s this spirit of get­ting to­gether that still has New York na­tive, Alex Miles so be­sot­ted with the city, af­ter mov­ing here in 1995. “Di­jon is the pul­sat­ing heart of France,” he says. “It’s full of love, un­der­stand­ing, good food and good peo­ple. It’s easy to get to­gether with peo­ple here,” he tells me, in ref­er­ence to the city’s café cul­ture. “Ev­ery­body here just seems to get along. There’s a great mix of peo­ple in the com­mu­nity.” Alex now runs pri­vate cooking classes in the city where peo­ple come from all over the world to cook, eat and en­joy food. It would seem that there’s no bet­ter place for it.

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