A holiday to the Marne department will take you to the heart of the Champagne region. More than 30.000 hectares (over 70.000 acres) of vineyards can be found here. Discover the secrets of the Champagne and follow the touristic Route of Champagne, the champagne trail. This fully marked route winds through vineyards and consists of five circuits: Côte des Blancs, Reims, Marne Valley, Massif de Saint Thierry and Coteaux Vitryat. Pay a visit to a vintner or champagne house to enjoy a tasting and a tour of the cellars.
The main city in the Marne department is the historic city of Reims. A beautiful city with parks and gardens and lots of flowers. Because of its long history (over 2000 years), this town has interesting historic buildings, such as the Roman arch Porte Mars, the Reims Cathedral and the Saint-Remi Basilica. But even if you do not come for culture, but for champagne and entertainment, you will not get bored: In Reims are numerous cafes, restaurants and brasseries, with both French and international dishes on the menu.
Located in the heart of the Champagne vineyards, Epernay is the capital of Champagne. In the Avenue de Champagne you will find world famous Champagne houses like Moët & Chandon, Perrier Jouët, Mercier and Champagne de Castellane nearby. Stroll through the streets of Epernay: City Hall, the Orangerie and the church Notre Dame and pay a visit to the Musée du Champagne
Chalons-en-Champagne is enclosed between the Marne River and a number of small channels and is a pleasant town with magnificent mansions from the 17th and 18th centuries. Besides the old bridges, that run across the Mau, are the squares Maréchal Foch and République, not to mention 'Le Petit Jard', a botanical garden where you can stroll and relax.
Another charming village is that of Hautvillers, nestled against the Montagne de Reims in the eponymous Regional Natural Park. In this village is the Benedictine abbey Saint Pierre, which has played a major role in the history of champagne. Dom Pérignon was a monk here and his innovative approach to wine making significantly change the production method, resulting in a blooming champagne industry. Saint-Menehould is the birthplace of Dom Perignon and this city is known for the recipe for the preparation of "pig's foot to the Holy Ménehould".