Tours, the Garden of France

Monday, 16 May 2011 - 03:06 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, Architecture
Reading Time:  3 minutes

Town Hall © Anima

Town Hall © Anima

Tours is a city in central France, the capital of the Indre-et-Loire department. It is located on the lower reaches of the river Loire, between Orléans and the Atlantic coast. Touraine, the region around Tours, is known for its wines, the alleged perfection (as perceived by some speakers) of its local spoken French, and for the famous Battle of Tours in 732. It is also the site of the cycling race Paris–Tours. Tours is the largest city in the Centre region of France, although it is not the regional capital, which resides in its second-largest city of Orléans. In 2006, the city itself had 142,000 inhabitants and the metropolitan area had 307,000.

The city of Tours has a population of 140,000 and is called “Le Jardin de la France” (“The Garden of France”). There are several parks located within the city. Tours is located between two rivers, the Loire to the north and the Cher to the south. The buildings of Tours are white with blue slate (called Ardoise) roofs; this style is common in the north of France, while most buildings in the south of France have terracotta roofs.

Saint-Martins Church © Parsifall Plumereau Square © Wladyslaw Courthouse © Guillaume Piolle Chamber of Commerce © Parsifall Tours Main Station © Captainm Tours Cathedral © Parsifall Tour Charlemagne © Guill37 Pont Wilson © Tango7174 Plumereau Square © Tango7174 Plumereau Square © Erin Silversmith Town Hall © Anima
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Plumereau Square © Erin Silversmith
Tours is famous for its original medieval district, called le Vieux Tours. Unique to the Old City are its preserved half-timbered buildings and la Place Plumereau, a square with busy pubs and restaurants, whose open-air tables fill the centre of the square. The Boulevard Beranger crosses the Rue Nationale at the Place Jean-Jaures and is the location of weekly markets and fairs. Tours is famous for its many bridges crossing the river Loire. One of them, the Pont Wilson, collapsed in 1978, but was rebuilt just like it was before.

Near the cathedral, in the garden of the ancient Palais des Archevêques (now Musée des Beaux-Arts), is a huge cedar tree planted by Napoleon. The garden also has in an alcove a stuffed elephant, Fritz. He escaped from the Barnum and Bailey circus during their stay in Tours in 1902. He went mad and had to be shot down, but the city paid to honor him, and he was stuffed as a result.

To inform you about latest news most of the city, town or tourism websites offer a newsletter service and/or operate Facepage pages/Twitter accounts. Read more on City of Tours, Tours Tourism and Wikipedia Tours. Learn more about the use of photos.






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