Standing guard high above the Rhône, across from Tain-l'Hermitage, Tournon-sur-Rhône is a beautiful and grandiose village with its castle and its monuments, its terraced vineyards and spectacular panoramas.
If you come by way of the Marc Sequin footbridge that crosses the Rhône you will be treated to a view of Tournon in all its grandeur.
Its imposing castle, built on a granite rock, dominates the village. At its feet, a maze of cobblestone streets holds in store for you historic buildings and monuments. Everything invites you for an enjoyable stay.
The Seguin bridge
The Seguin bridge and the château
The Seguin bridge
One of the most beautiful castles in Ardèche, the Tournon Castle plays itself out in three acts.
The old Saint-Just castle was built in the 10th century and can still be seen on the right of the main courtyard. In the 14th century, the northwest wing was built.
The 16th century saw a flurry of construction with new living quarters added, including the big Renaissance building that today holds, behinds it big studded door, the museum of the history of Tournon-sur-Rhône.
There you can explore the different rooms with period furnishing and admire the important artwork collection of which a part is devoted to the arts and traditions of Ardèche.
The Beauregard Tower as well as the two terraces and the chapel were also built between 1560 and 1600.
The Chateau of Tournon sur Rhone
Tournon sur Rhône Castle
Château Renaissance - Tournon sur Rhône
The château from the bridge
The château of Tournon-sur-Rhône
Tournon sur Rhône - The Chateau
Starting in 1300, the lords of Tournon had the Collegiate Church of Saint Julien built. In Gothic style, you will see some beautiful frescoes inside. Curiously, some old houses had been built right into the church's walls.
Tournon also has the oldest high school in France, the Lycée Gabriel Faure, founded in 1536.
The Tourist Office can be found in the imposing Hôtel du Marquis de la Tourette.
Behind it lies the Farconnet Quay. This square by the river in the shade of the sycamores is the favourite place for the local boules players. From there, you can go up to the Pierregourde Tower and the Hospital Tower, which were part of the fortifications built in the 16th century during the wars of religion. Or head to the Rue de Droux, in the past the chic quarter of Tournon with its very stylish mansions.
After your tour, why not take a break in the Garden of Eden, a wooded and verdant haven of peace within the city walls, next to the old convent.
The more sporty might want to continue their excursion along one of the cycling paths, such as the ViaRhôna.
Or on the scenic route that snakes between the vineyards on the terraced hills.
Always a prosperous town, Tournon built its fortune on its wines, already much loved by the emperor Charlemagne, and still today. It was the Jesuits of Tournon who gave the name Saint Joseph to the appellation that stretches from Saint-Péray in the south to Condrieu in the north.
For foodies, Tournon was the birthplace of the very flavoursome Picodon goat's cheeses. Across the river, in Tain l'Hermitage, you can visit the Cité du Chocolat and historic Valrhôna chocolate factory.
Former Mansion of the Marquis of Tourelle
The Lycée Gabriel Faure
Wedding in the Collegiate Church of Saint Julien
The dock Farconnet
The Via Rhona
Cruise on the Rhone river
Statue of Marc Séguin
* The Mastrou, the little steam train of the Vivarais leaves Tournon to go to Lamastre, passing through the gorges of the Doux.
* Tain l'Hermitage
* Boucieu-le-Roi, a village with character in a verdant setting
* Beaumont-Monteux with the Japanese-style Erik Borja Zen Garden
* Postman Cheval's Ideal Palace in Hauterives, a not-to-be missed curiosity of Naive art
The Mastrou, the little steam train of the Vivarais
Postman Cheval's Ideal Palace in Hauterives
Boucieu le Roi in Ardeche