A few years ago Alain Maurel, my friend and bus owner, suggested I visit Vézelay. He told me it was a pity to miss such a charming village that was only a few miles off the busy autoroute from Burgundy to Paris. So, last year I gave Vézelay a “test run” and discovered I had indeed been missing a hidden gem. This travel season I’ve included Vézelay in my Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and France itinerary and all agree, it is a keeper!
Vézelay is in an imposing position strung out along the crest of a hill, with far-reaching views over the ‘Monts de Morvan’ and on the edge of the Morvan Regional Park.
Many of the houses along the main street are now cafes, galleries and gift shops but there is none of the “worthless junk” along the road that occupies many a tourist town – if you are look- ing for tacky souviners, you will need to look elsewhere.
The highlight of the village is without doubt the Abbey of St Mary Magdalene, an awe-inspiring building with soaring decorative vaults. The abbey contains the relics of Saint Mary and was historically the departure point for pilgrims to Santiago de Compostella.
The drive to and from Vézelay is beautiful. These photos were taken a few days ago at the start of May.