Lorraine Region

General Info

Regional Map
Conseil Régional
Tourism: Comité Régional du Tourisme
Capital: Metz
Departments: Meurthe-et-Moselle, Meuse, Moselle, and Vosges
Arrondissements-19, Cantons-157, Communes-2,337
Population: 2,346,993 (2008 est.)
France Lorraine map

Overview

Lorraine Metz Gate of the Germans
Lorraine has strong Germanic influences and is the only French region to have borders with three other countries: Belgium, Luxembourg, and Germany. The location of Lorraine led to it becoming a crossroads for four nations and it has had an important role in European affairs. Its proximity to Germany shows evidence of a war-torn era with many war memorials scattered in the area, most notably in Verdun with its forts and trenches as grim reminders of the past.
While much of the region is somewhat overdeveloped, the cities of Metz and Nancy have benefited from recent restoration efforts. The Cathédrale Saint-Étienne in the regional capital of Metz has one of the largest assortment of stained-glass windows from Gothic to modern styles. Nearby, the more historic and refined ancient city of Nancy reveals Lorraine's history and culture as it was the seat of the Duke of Lorraine and now boasts a wealth of attractions. Lorraine has many rivers running through it including the Rhine, Moselle, Meurthe, and Meuse.

Lorraine Departmental Information

Notable Towns and Sights in Lorraine

Baccarat (Meurthe-et-Moselle) is a small town of 5000, but is well-known for producing some of the world's finest crystal and glassware. In 1764, King Louis XVth granted permission to the Bishop of Metz to establish a glassworks at Baccarat. The Musée du Cristal, owned by the company, is Lorraine's largest private museum. Across the Meurthe River is the Église Saint Rémy which was built in the 1950's and has over 4000 panels of colored crystal by Baccarat. Tourisme.   Official Baccarat Crystal site. France Lorraine Baccarat Crystal
Bar-le-Duc (Meuse) is modern and busy in the Ville Bas (lower) area of the town and is surrounded by wooded hills and traversed by the Ornain River. The Ville Haute (upper) which is reached by staircases and steep/narrow thoroughfares is bordered by houses of the 15th, 16th and 17th-centuries. In this section are the 16th-century remains of the Chateau of the Dukes of Bar (dismantled in 1670), the old clock-tower photo, and the college, built in the latter half of the 16th century. The church of Saint Stephen from the 14th-15th centuries contains a skillfully-carved portrayal of a half-decayed corpse in white stone and is the work of Ligier Richier (16th-century) whom was a pupil of Michelangelo. France Lorraine Bar-le-duc Pont Notre Dame
Épinal (Vosges) is best known for the "Images d'Epinal" which are popular prints created by a local company, the Imagerie d'Epinal, formerly known as the Imagerie Pellerin. These stencil-colored woodcuts are of military subjects, Napoleonic history, storybook characters, and other folk themes that were widely distributed throughout the 19th-century. The company exists today and still uses its hand-operated presses to produce the antique images. Other local industries include textiles, metals, moroccan leather, precision instruments, and bicycles. France Lorraine Épinal River
Gérardmer (Vosges) is in the heart of the massive Parc Régional des Ballons des Vosges. It has a long history of successful tourism since its first office opened in 1885. The area was rebuilt after being razed by the Nazis in 1944 and is now a popular vacation resort set on a magnificent lake surrounded by dense forests. In the winter the steep-sloped Vosges Cristalline mountains provide good skiing. The town produces Géromée cheese which is similar to the better known Munster variety from the neighoring Alsace region. There are several lakes in the vicinity: Lac de Longemer, Lac de Retournemere, and Lac de Blanchemer. Gérardmer Tourisme . France Lorraine Gérardmer
Lunéville (Meurthe-et-Moselle) is located on the Meurthe River and is known as the "Versaille of the East". A main attraction here is the château commissioned by Duke Leopold of Lorraine and built between 1703 and 1720. Though suffering a fire in 2003, it it is being renovated and should reopen by year 2013. The gardens are currently open to the public free of charge. Lunéville is also known for its faïence (fine tin-glazed earthenware) industry as well as its Italian-style Théatre. photo France Lorraine Château Lunéville
Metz (Moselle) is the regional capital and is a stately city located at the confluence of the Moselle and the Seille rivers. There are at least twenty bridges crossing its rivers and canals with tourist-friendly access along the banks. The Gothic Cathédrale Saint Etienne photo overlooks the city's historic center and has stained glass from Gothic to modern including some by Chagall. The Théâtre de la Comédie is the oldest French théatre still in use and is reached by a small wooden bridge connected to the nearby island of Petit Saulcy. The new Pompidou Centre-Metz is one of France's newest architectural wonders and is an outpost of Paris' Pompidou Centre for Modern amd Contemporary art (photo). It is part of France's new "cultural decentralization" effort to set up art centers outside of the Capital, Paris. Metz is also known as a high-tech center in the region. France Lorraine Metz
Nancy (Meurthe-et-Moselle) is a wonderfully refined large city that is close to the Meurthe River and Canal du Marne. Its center is considered the most beautiful royal square in Europe and its most popular landmark is the Place Stanislas photo It has many fine museums including the notable Musée de l'Ecole de Nancy which features works from the Art Nouveau movement. Also, the Musée des Beaux Arts has works by artists Delacroix, Manet, Monet, Berthe, Morisot, Utrillo, Dufy, and Modigliani. Ville de Nancy France Lorraine Nancy
Toul (Meurthe-et-Moselle) is an historic fortified town that lies in dark forests north of Nancy and was one of the 4th-century bishoprics (diocese or administrative area) along with Verdun and Metz. The beautiful and architecturally diverse Cathédrale Saint Étienne photo was built starting in 13th-century and took over 300 years to complete. The Gothic Eglise Saint Gengoult has beautiful stained glass windows and is surrounded by sculpted Renaissance houses. Nearby are the local vineyards which produce Côtes de Toul wines. France Lorraine Toul
Verdun (Meuse) is situated at the mouth of the Meuse River and has an extensive militaristic past which is quite evident by the towns walls, drawbridges, and battlefields that lie on each bank of the river. It became the symbol of French resistance in 1916 when over 400,000 French soldiers and a similar number of German soldiers died here defending the citadel. Sights here include the Porte Chausée gateway, the Citadelle-de-Verdun with its 12th-century tower, the Mus&eacutee de la Citadelle Militaire, and the Cathédrale de Notre Dame. City photo


France Lorraine Verdun

Les Plus Beaux Villages in the Lorraine Region

Meurthe-et-Moselle

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Meuse

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Moselle

Rodemack
Saint Quirin

Vosges

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France Lorraine region
Complete List of Les Plus Beaux Villages de France

Natural Parks in the Lorraine Region

Additional Resources for the Lorraine Region

Average Monthly Temperatures in the Lorraine Region

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