Sunday, 25 October 2009

The Cheese Tower

 In Cluny there is a tower called the Tour de Fromage, the Cheese Tower. A fascinating name for a brick structure. You have to pay to climb up the tower and see the marvellous view over the town, so imagine our excitement when the local paper announced free entry on Sunday 3rd October. We discussed when to go to avoid the crowds and decided that about eleven o’clock would be the best time. So there we were in front of the doors of the Tourist Information Office which give access to the tower and to our dismay the doors were locked. How is this possible? A big notice on the doors explained all “We are sorry that due to circumstance not of our making, an error appeared in the Journal de Saône et Loire [the aforementioned local paper]. The free visit to the Cheese Tower was on Saturday 3rd October not Sunday 3rd October as published, we apologise for any inconvenience”. Having been in Cluny on Saturday and not visited the Cheese Tower because it was free the next day I was rather fromaged off to say the least.

Never mind, there is always the chance to try out a different restaurant in Cluny, a bit early, but if we walk to the Bio-restaurant near the station that some friends had recommended, we will work up an appetite and be there at lunch time. Not our day, that was closed too. Ah well back to Casse Croute as per usual for the best chips in town.

Well the Cheese Tower now had to be visited as a matter of principle. So back we were in Cluny today our 2 Euros entrance fee in hand and we climbed the stairs and we climbed and we climbed it is a LONG way up. The view was worth the walk, the top of the tower gives a spectacular panoramic view over Cluny and the surrounding hills. A clever “gadget” (which they also have a couple of in the Abbey by the way) superimposes the ancient Abbey church on a live camera view of the market below. You really think that the abbey is there and wow did that building dominate the town!

After admiring the view for a bit we started down the stairs which are very steep indeed. Not something to be done by two people who have a fear of heights and won’t go above three rungs on a ladder. When we finally got to the bottom after having to stop a number of times to let the less wimpish to overtake us. Both of us arrived at the bottom with trembling hands and wobbly legs. Off to the kebab shop to recover.

PS. I don’t know why it is called the Cheese Tower, in all the excitement I forgot to ask.


  1. WOW!! These pics are GREAT! I have been to France but there was not lon enough to visit Burgundy. My wife is French and we are planning a trip back there next year.

  2. Thanks Rico. Hope you enjoy your trip. It is a beautiful area around here.


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