Top Historic Sights in Montpellier, France

Explore the historic highlights of Montpellier

Musée Fabre

The Musée Fabre was founded by François-Xavier Fabre, a Montpellier painter, in 1825. It is one of the main sights of Montpellier. The town of Montpellier was given thirty paintings in 1802 which formed the basis of a modest municipal museum under the Empire, moving between various temporary sites. In 1825, the town council accepted a large donation of works from Fabre and the museum was installed in the ref ...
Founded: 1825 | Location: Montpellier, France

Montpellier Botanical Garden

The Jardin des plantes de Montpellier (4.5 hectares) is a historic botanical garden and arboretum maintained by the Montpellier University. The garden was established in 1593 by letters patent from King Henri IV, under the leadership of Pierre Richer de Belleval, professor of botany and anatomy. It is France"s oldest botanical garden, inspired by the Orto botanico di Padova (1545) and in turn serving as model for th ...
Founded: 1593 | Location: Montpellier, France

Montpellier Cathedral

Montpellier Cathedral was originally attached to the monastery of Saint-Benoît, which was founded in 1364. The building was elevated to the status of cathedral in 1536, when the see of Maguelonne was transferred to Montpellier. After the building suffered extensive damage during the Wars of Religion between Catholics and Protestants in the 16th century, it was rebuilt in the 17th century.
Founded: 1364 | Location: Montpellier, France

Château de Flaugergues

The Château de Flaugergues is one of many follies erected by wealthy merchants surrounding the city. The castle preserves antique furniture and collection of Flemish tapestries. The follies in the region were constructed by aristocrats serving the French king. In 1696, Etienne de Flaugergues, member of the Cour des Comptes, bought a piece of land and built which henceforth carried his name. It took him 45 years to ...
Founded: 1696-1741 | Location: Montpellier, France

Citadel of Montpellier

The Citadel of Montpellier was built between 1624 and 1627, after several rebellions under the orders of Louis XIII in order to keep watch over the town. In the 20th century it became the Joffre Barracks, named after Joseph Joffre, and since 1947 the citadel has been an academic campus - the nationwide famous Lycée Joffre. In 1621, King Louis XIII arrived with soldiers to quell a Huguenot rebellion; he took over the cit ...
Founded: 1624-1627 | Location: Montpellier, France

Château d'O

Château d"O is one of the old country mansions or follies surrounding the French city of Montpellier. It was built by wealthy merchants from the 18th century onwards. The South entrance leads to the 18th century mansion, while North entrance leads to modern buildings, with Théâtre Jean-Claude Carrière. It is now a main sight of the city of Montpellier.
Founded: 1743-1750 | Location: Montpellier, France

Château de la Mogére

The Château de la Mogère is one of many follies surrounding Montpellier, built by wealthy merchants in the 18th century. In 1706, the grounds of la Mogère were purchased by Fulcran Limouzin. In 1715, architect Jean Giral drew the plan for La Mogère, giving it the appearance it still has today. Its harmonious façade is topped off by a pediment, standing against a background of pine trees, all in Renaissance-style. T ...
Founded: 1715 | Location: Montpellier, France

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Cesis Castle

German crusaders known as the Livonian Brothers of the Sword began construction of the Cēsis castle (Wenden) near the hill fort in 1209. When the castle was enlarged and fortified, it served as the residence for the Order's Master from 1237 till 1561, with periodic interruptions. Its ruins are some of the most majestic castle ruins in the Baltic states. Once the most important castle of the Livonian Order, it was the official residence for the masters of the order.

In 1577, during the Livonian War, the garrison destroyed the castle to prevent it from falling into the control of Ivan the Terrible, who was decisively defeated in the Battle of Wenden (1578).

In 1598 it was incorporated into the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and Wenden Voivodship was created here. In 1620 Wenden was conquered by Sweden. It was rebuilt afterwards, but was destroyed again in 1703 during the Great Northern War by the Russian army and left in a ruined state. Already from the end of the 16th century, the premises of the Order's castle were adjusted to the requirements of the Cēsis Castle estate. When in 1777 the Cēsis Castle estate was obtained by Count Carl Sievers, he had his new residence house built on the site of the eastern block of the castle, joining its end wall with the fortification tower.

Since 1949, the Cēsis History Museum has been located in this New Castle of the Cēsis Castle estate. The front yard of the New Castle is enclosed by a granary and a stable-coach house, which now houses the Exhibition Hall of the Museum. Beside the granary there is the oldest brewery in Latvia, Cēsu alus darītava, which was built in 1878 during the later Count Sievers' time, but its origins date back to the period of the Livonian Order. Further on, the Cēsis Castle park is situated, which was laid out in 1812. The park has the romantic characteristic of that time, with its winding footpaths, exotic plants, and the waters of the pond reflecting the castle's ruins. Nowadays also one of the towers is open for tourists.