A few months ago, I read an article on CNN about Château de Savigny-lès-Beaune, the French Château with both a winery and the world’s largest private collection of fighter jets. This was such an intriguing combination that when I began planning a short getaway to Burgundy for the fall break, I put it at the top of the list of the things to do while we were there. I’m glad I did, because we all really enjoyed it! In addition to fighter jets and wine, Château de Savigny-lès-Beaune, also has race cars, antique tractors, bikes, motorcycles, and firetrucks. It even has a small area devoted to space exploration. And thousands of toy models of all of the above! I highly recommend this Chateau / fighter jet museum.Detail Summary
|Where:||Château de Savigny-lès-Beaune (french)|
Chateau de Savigny, Rue Général Leclerc,
|Train/Bus:||Zürich HB -> Beaune, France – 3 hr 13 min|
From Beaune, public transport to the Château de Savigny-lès-Beaune is not possible. You will need to drive yourself, take a taxi, or bike.
|Car:||Zürich -> Beaune, France – 3 hr 22 min|
We drove and parked at our hotel. There were multiple public parking lots in the area but they were very busy even in October. From Beaune it is about a 10 minute drive to Château de Savigny-lès-Beaune.
|Cost 2022:||Adult – 12 Euro|
Children (10 -16) – 6 Euro
Children 9 and under – Free
We drove from Beaune to the Château (there is parking nearby), and did a self-guided tour. As far as I can tell from the website (french), only self-guided tours are available, but the the website is in french so I could be wrong. Anyway, the tour route is well labeled, and we just followed the arrows.
After purchasing our tickets, we followed the arrows to the first building which housed a large collection of motorcycles and Abarth race cars. From there, we continued to follow the signs to two more out-building collections, the first containing a small collection of space satellites and information on rockets. The second, a larger collection of antique tractors.
After leaving the antique tractors, we walked past one of the vineyards with a lovely view of the Château and the fighter jets. Then, we spent a lot of time walking around the jets. This is an impressive collection including multiple Migs and Mirages.
After the fighter jets, we entered another building that held a collection of fire engines and other safety vehicles.
Finally we we went into the main Château. Looks like a fairy tale, no?
The first floor is set up as entertainment space. I think you can hold weddings here. The lower level had areas set up to display typical servants quarters and wine making equipment. The upper-floor was stuffed to the gils with motorcycles and toy models.
After going through all of the collections, it was time to go. The Château is a winery in addition to being a museum and while they offered a wine tasting (6 Euros to try three wines), we didn’t try the wines. We did however buy a bottle of their wine and a bottle of their beer to take home.
We loved this Château/Museum and if you are in Burgundy area and like wine and fighter jets, I highly recommend it.
Three Museums in Beaune for Rainy Days
My plan for spending time in the Burgundy area was to do a lot of biking. Unfortunately, we had terrible weather the whole time and only got to go out for one short bike ride. Instead, we spent time at the following museums. I enjoyed them and they were a good solution for rainy days. All of the museums below are located in Beaune and are an easy walking distance from the town center.
Hôtel-Dieu – Hospices in Beaune
Founded in 1443, the Hôtel-Dieu – Hospices in Beaune, remained in operation as a health care facility until the 1970s.
We did the self-guided audio tour and it was very interesting. Even if it isn’t a rainy day, this place is worth a tour.
La Moutarderie Fallot
We also did a tour at the La Moutarderie Fallot mustard factory where we learned about the history of mustard and how it is made. We even tried our hand at making some mustard ourselves. Afterwards, we spent too much at the factory store buying many different flavors of mustard to take home.
We did the “Découvertes” tour which focuses on history, but they also offer a “Sensations” tour which shows you the present day production facilities. You need to reserve ahead of time for a tour as they are quite popular. The tour is well run and interesting and, like the hospices above, I recommend it even if it isn’t a rainy day.
Musée du Vin
We also visited the Musée du Vin, which covers the culture and history of wine making in the area. Although I didn’t take a picture of it, the museum has a nice topographic model showing which grape varieties grow where. The pictures below are of some of the wine making equipment they had on display.
While, it was an interesting museum, unlike the other museums in this post, I wouldn’t put it on the must do list. However, if you are in need of something to do on a rainy day, I would stop by.
Bonus: Restaurant Recommendation For Beaune
Beaune has a lot of restaurants, and we ate well while we were there. One restaurant, however, really impressed: Caves Madeleine. I had read several rave reviews before our trip and made a reservation for Friday night. I’m so glad I did. The six-course tasting menu, at 65 Euros, was more than worth it – seasonal, fresh, local, creative, and expertly prepared. The pumpkin ravioli and the braised rabbit with mashed potatoes were real stand-outs. I loved it and I totally recommend eating there if you can get a reservation. Fair warning though, the place is small and books out very quickly.