The Côteaux Vitryats
Champagne as you’ve never seen it!
Champagne wine trail
A rich architectural heritage
Set off on a jaunt through Champagne, taking in a whole series of out-of-the-ordinary immersive and sensory experiences.
From Châlons-en-Champagne to Vitry-le-François, immerse yourself in the region’s heritage as you enjoy unforgettable experiences: night-time boat rides and multisensory visits for a getaway you’ll remember!
The Champagne wine trails are a great way to get to know our region. Take your time meandering along them, one day won't be long enough! If you’d like to take advantage of the things to see and do along them, why not plan a trip over several days and book accommodation nearby? If you’re short of time, you can also select the activities that appeal to you the most to make your stay in Champagne a memorable one!
A trail combining architecture, history and nature
The Coteaux de Vitry trail runs through several of the region’s historical sites. It winds its way across hills, mountains and plains in discovery of some fifteen villages with architecture typical of the Champagne bocage. All along the trail, Champagne Growers and Houses will be delighted to welcome you, show you round their estates, and invite you to taste their cuvées.
The city of Châlons-en-Champagne is of special importance to the Champagne region. It’s here that the trail begins, in the heart of a city with a rich architectural and historical heritage. The Notre-Dame-en-Vaux collegiate church is one of the most impressive of the city’s must-see monuments. It’s inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List and is well worth lingering over, giving yourself plenty of time to admire its superb stained-glass windows and Gothic architecture. Surrender yourself to the tranquillity that reigns in the building as you make your way through its nave, which is built on four levels and bring extraordinary clarity of mind.
If you want to get to know the city in another way, what could be better than a boat ride along the Mau? During a peaceful, companionable excursion, you’ll have a chance to take a good look at the city’s many treasures, including Notre-Dame-en-Vaux Collegiate Church and its 2 emblematic steeples thrusting their way skywards, Sainte-Marie convent and Château du Marché. For an out-of-the-ordinary experience, the city has created a sound-and-light show starring its various monuments, to enjoy during a night-time boat ride. The plays of light on the buildings’ façades are truly unforgettable and are sure to enchant old and young alike!
The city of Châlons-en-Champagne also harbours the Duducothèque, a facility dedicated to the early drawings of Jean Cabut, better known as Cabu, the famous cartoonist who fell victim to the 2015 attack on Charlie Hebdo’s offices. The venue serves as an area for exhibitions, reading, research, entertainment and learning all in one… Get to know Cabu’s story through his very first drawings, including the iconic Grand Duduche, who inspired the name of the place.
Thirty or so kilometres further on, you come to the village of Vitry-en-Perthois and its high point, Mont de Fourche. Leave your vehicle at the entrance to the path and follow it to the top of the hill. Getting there is a bit of an effort, but it’s well worth it once you’ve reached your destination! The stunning view over the vineyards, nothing less than a mosaic of the region’s terroir, is magnificent whatever the season or time of day. It’s particularly beautiful at sunset, when the landscapes are decked out in golden hues.
Not far off lies Vitry-le-François. 90% of the village was destroyed between 1940 and 1944. Its iconic monument, Notre-Dame-de-l'Assomption Collegiate Church remained standing even though it was damaged. Its restoration was completed in 1960. The building is the largest classical-style church in the département of Marne, and is well worth visiting. Immerse yourself in over 400 years of history and take the time to admire its breathtaking architecture! A little curiosity not to be missed: the sundial on the Collegiate Church’s south façade.
The Church is located on Place d’Armes, a vibrant square that forms an integral part of the locals’ daily lives, as they like nothing better than settling down on the benches there, sitting awhile and chatting with friends. The magnificently sculpted Goddess of the River Marne stands atop the fountain, keeping a watchful eye on the eponymous watercourse in the distance. The square resonates all year round to the rhythm of festivities of all kinds, including concerts, exhibitions, open-air games and fairs. Surrounded by shops, bars and restaurants, Place d’Armes is Vitry-le-François’ beating heart!
Another of the town’s landmarks, the Vitry Champagne and Der "Espace Scénographie", A short multisensory tour that takes you through four thematic areas: earth, fire, air and water. It helps you discover all the region’s many riches, its fauna and fragile flora, and a few snippets of its history. You can also acquaint yourself with Lake Der, a key ecosystem in the region’s ecological balance.
With its combination of history, culture and nature, a varied Wine Trail enabling you to capture the very essence of the region while enjoying a real breath of fresh air.
During Champagne tastings, remember to drink in moderation, especially if you are driving. Breathalysers and spittoons are available at Champagne Houses and Growers as well as at some restaurants. Do feel free to ask for them!
See the trail in pictures
Cycling getaway across Champagne’s hillsides
A unique sporty getaway to discover the stunning landscapes that the Champagne region has to offer.