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Rouen Hotels

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Where to stay in Rouen

Rouen Hotels

The crisscrossing beams of half-timber houses, the soft swell of the River Seine, and an awe-inspiring Gothic cathedral that’s right up there with Europe’s best, combine to make Rouen a Norman capital of culture - and a real highlight of northern France. The city’s gorgeous architecture has inspired everyone from Monet to Ruskin and Lichtenstein to put brush to canvas, and with a hearty dose of dark history also waiting to be uncovered, Normandy’s historic capital is sure to enthral.

Things to see

The towering spire of Rouen’s Notre-Dame cathedral can be seen soaring above the city’s cobbled streets for miles around. Once the world’s tallest, the cathedral now has to settle for simply being one of the most spectacular - and its wrinkled facade continues to provide inspiration for the artists and writers who flock here. During celebrations, elaborate light shows bring the building to life, turning its facade into a malleable canvas, and a living work of art. Inside, great arches swoop over rows of seating, providing a fittingly dramatic scene for the tomb of the revered warrior king - Richard the Lion Heart. There’s even more history waiting at the Church of St. Joan of Arc, which was built to watch over the spot where ‘The Maid of Orléans’ was burned to death for heresy. The original church was destroyed by Allied bombing runs, but fortunately the original, 16th century, stained glass windows were saved. Step inside to see the sun bathing them with light, and spraying vivid colour across the modern interior. The astronomical clock that stands proudly over Rue du Gros-Horloge is also at its best when the sun is coating it with light, causing it to sparkle above the heads of passing pedestrians. The clock is one of the oldest in France, and its mechanism dates all the way back to 1389.

Hotels in Rouen

Rustic decor meets modern convenience in the beautiful Rouen hotels - where you can lounge on sumptuously soft memory foam mattresses, while admiring the idiosyncratic patterns of mighty wooden beams, as they stretch across your room’s ceiling. With spot-lit bathrooms - that are gleamingly clean - and views out across the city, chances are your room’s fitness centre and swimming pool will be neglected in favour of glasses of wine in the bath, or on your sun-soaked balcony. A typically charming French buffet of buttery croissants, and freshly-squeezed fruit juices greets you in the morning, while WiFi and flat-screen televisions connect you to a world of international television and entertainment. Our suggestions are Ermitage Bouquet, which is only 10 minutes away from downtown, and Novotel Suites Rouen Normandie, which is a 4-star hotel in Rouen.

Where to stay

If the beautiful daubings that grace the walls of Musee des Beaux-Arts de Rouen museum inspire you to start your own art collection, then Rue Saint-Romain’s tiny studios, and charming galleries, are ideal for investing in local masterpieces. Rouen’s downtown, meanwhile, lets you explore this historic city’s wealth of spectacular buildings - like St Maclou and the Abbey church of St Ouen - before returning to a hotel that’s close to the shadow of the cathedral’s tall towers. As night falls, head to a local restaurant to taste the soft meat of a pink, Rouen duckling delicacy.

How to get to Rouen

Its River Seine location, Notre-Dame cathedral, and historic charm means Rouen has a lot in common with the French Capital. If you want to see Paris for yourself, you’re just 90 minutes’ drive away – and you can also make use of the massive Charles De Gaulle Airport. Take the fast train up to the city itself, before exploring Rouen, or taking a local service out to Normandy’s history-laced towns. The drive to the Channel Tunnel, and ferry terminals around Calais, takes just 2 hours.