Beauvais is one of those little towns, whose suburbs are home to a budget airline airport, which is why they are often underestimated and bypassed in favor of their large and famous neighbors (in this case Paris). If, however, you decide to spend an afternoon in Beauvais, you will discover a charming French town. Below are some of the key landmarks to enjoy in Beauvais:
The Cathedral of Saint Peter of Beauvais – Construction started during the 13th century, but was never finished due to a series of unfortunate incidents. This cathedral is all Gothic, from the foundations to the very last pointy detail on the façade! Make sure not to miss out on the spectacular stained glass windows or the 1302 clock, which is the oldest functional one of its kind. The cathedral also has a 150-year old astronomical clock, whose history and purpose are explained on a tour 5 times a day. Entrance fee: 4 euros; opening hours: until 5:30 pm during the winter months and until 6:15 pm in the summer.
Maladrerie Saint-Lazare – If you have ever wondered what medieval hospitals looked like, this is the place to satisfy your curiosity. You can visit some of the 13th century wards, as well as the infirmary’s gardens. There is no entrance fee. Opening hours: 11:00-18:00, closed in the winter. Take bus number 4 from the center of Beauvais to Maladrerie.
MUDO – Musée de l’Oise – A single step separates you from what is the old Episcopalian palace. In Musée de l’Oise, you will find retro clothes, wood carvings, art pieces from the Renaissance, as well as contemporary ones. There is no entrance fee. The museum is in close proximity to the cathedral. After seeing the artworks, you may feel the urge to grab a piece of wood and sand it yourself.
The National Tapestry Gallery – At the foot of Saint Peter’s Cathedral you will notice a contemporary building, which is home to a famed collection of royal tapestry.
Aviation Museum – Stroll around the collection of over 900 airplanes. Although they have been permanently grounded, the aircraft tell the tale of man s pursuit of the skies. Entrance fee: 6 euros.
Add a cup of coffee or a bottle of wine and you’ll get the perfect French afternoon’s end!