Regional capital : Dijon
Departments / Counties of Bourgogne
|71||Saône et Loire||Macon|
A region rich in history, culture and geography. Until the late 18th century Burgundy was not part of France, but a Dukedom with the powerful and long reigning Burgundy Dukes. They were allies to the English kings against the French kings. When the dukes where at the summit of their power, the Burgundy frontiers stretched across eastern France and into Flanders. The Cistercian influence is also very significant, with many abbeys and monasteries such as Cluny, Fontenay and Citeaux.
Wine is one of the pillars and pride of Burgundy, with some of the most famous wines in the world coming from the concentrated vineyards. The Romans introduced grapes and the production was mastered by the local monks. Now the main vineyards stretch from Dijon along a narrow southeast facing slope for a few hundred kilometres.
Farming is dominated by cereal crops in the Saone plain and Nivernais plateau, whilst in the hill areas there is much cattle farming with the traditional white Charolais.
The diverse geography, with the Morvan park with cold granite to the limestone Saone valley. There is much woodland and forest, in the Cote d'Or, Oak whilst in the Morvan there is Red Pine.
The important rivers such as the Saone and Yonne allowing access to the Rhone and Seine have provided the region with a major network of navigable waterways such as the Burgundy Canal.