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Beaune west to the famous vineyards
Vineyards of Chassagne-Montrachet
You will always see activity in the vineyards whether it is tending the shoots in spring, tilling the soil in summer, picking the grapes in September or cleaning up with a satisfying bonfire in winter. Heading west from Beaune, drive past the famous vineyards of Volnay and Pommard where every stem is lovingly cared for to produce the Grand and Premier Cru wines. You can explore the pretty wine villages at your leisure, stopping off for tastings en route. Château de Pommard puts on an art exhibition each season and has a restaurant for a wine tasting lunch.
Château Chassagne-Montrachet offers a cellar visit with wine tasting for 15€ per person, or a tasting lunch for 50€ a head, advance booking required.
In the medieval village of Nolay, the covered market is of interest. It was only recently that the pissoire was removed but luckily that is as far as the modernization went. The square is a charming place to stop for a refreshment.
Château de La Rochepot
Continue on to Château de Sully. Sully was described by Madame de Sévigné as Burgundy's Fontainebleau and this moated château is certainly another fine example of Renaissance architecture, set in extensive parkland. The section of the interior which is open to the public has a lot of personal touches from the smell of beeswax to the books and fresh flowers.
Passing near Nolay again, the Bout du Monde, literally the 'end of the world' is a deep gorge ending with a waterfall.
On the way back to Beaune the magnificent geometric roof patterns on Château de La Rochepot stand out. Santenay is a charming little village where you wander along the canal, and Meursault, the archetypal Burgundian wine village. You might like to return to Puligny-Montrachet at leisure one day to try another tasting lunch at La Table d'Olivier Leflaive.
guided Wine Tours: See Gourmet Tours and Tasting Lunches
Find wineries to visit at a click on the Rue des Vignerons website. This is a free service where you book online, there's information about the visit, prices, map and directions, and you can buy the domaine's wine at a reduced price.
Best Western Hotel Henry II *** Beaune