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Reims is the metropolis of the Champagne-Ardenne area, and a city that celebrates art, history and the enjoyment of fine food and wine. Along with its restaurants serving the finest food and wine, it has countless art galleries and buildings of varied architectural styles. Some of them date back as early as the 3rd century, such as at the Gate of Mars, the Gallo-Roman cryptoporticus. Contemporary architecture can be seen at the Conservatoire National de Région, the Reims Champagne Congress Centre. Reims also has many rare trees, including a specimen of the Faux de Verzy at the Pierre Schneiter horticultural garden.
Reims has no less than four monuments listed as UNESCO World Heritage sites. The city is also known for its famous Champagne houses that are open to the public; many of them provide tours of their cellars, wine tastings and gala dinners. Reims is also a city of plants and flowers – it has been awarded four flowers as part of the prestigious Villes et Villages Fleuris flower competition, the highest of any French city. This city will truly leave a lasting impression.
Eating out in Reims is a serious business, with countless restaurants, brasseries and crêperies serving gourmet and classic French cuisine using fresh, local products. Many restaurants specialise in mussels (moules), which are delicacies and served with a variety of sauces. Of course, most formal meals can be accompanied by a fine bottle of Champagne from the Reims region.
France has a rich café culture and wherever you go you will find coffee and tasty treats. To eat informally and inexpensively, order the “formule complete”, which will give you a hot drink or fruit juice, a baguette and usually some delicious pastries.
Meeting friends for an informal drink is a popular way to spend an evening in Reims. Most of the liveliest bars are around the Place Drouet d’Erlon and the rue Chanzy-areas. Bars usually serve traditional local beers and spirits, along with non-alcoholic drinks, wines and Champagne. Reims has a lively cultural scene and visitors can spend an evening enjoying popular and classical concerts and festivals. For those who enjoy a few moves on the dance floor there are many nightclubs to choose from.
The Place Drouet d’Erlon is a pedestrian area in Reims and where most of the shopping arcades are located, and streets rue de Vesle and cours Langlet also have a lot to offer in terms of shopping. Shops here sell everything from chocolates, local gourmet specialities and wines to the latest designer fashion, jewellery and leather ware.
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