People: My name is Dominique Freyburger... Monique Freudenstadt... Maurice Kluft. Pace yourself. The story they tell is that around 1700, after lots of fiddling with double fermentation, one of the monks developed the first Champagne. The canvases at the Orangerie Museum are snapshots of Monet’s garden. Despite all this motion, the impression is one of stillness, as Venus orbits slowly around a vertical axis. She’s actually made from two different pieces of stone plugged together at the hips (you can see the seam). This art moment — a sampling of how we share our love of art in our tours — is an excerpt from the new, full-color coffee-table book, “Europe’s Top 100 Masterpieces,” by Rick Steves and Gene Openshaw. We've enjoyed our visit to Colmar and our stay at Maison Jund. With our buttresses in place we've got a solid Gothic structure, more windows than ever, and a spire that will never fall. The Venus de Milo created a sensation when it was discovered in 1820, on the Greek island of Milos. Alsace has carefully coifed poodles and the best beer in France. The statue is a rare Greek original, not a Roman copy. The tapestry is realistic enough that even an illiterate peasant could understand what’s happening. Considering that we only had a few minutes to get through the audience's questions during the event, Steves wanted to make sure he had the … There are 4,000 of old Champagnes still aging in this enoteca. see our FAQ. For 12 years, Monet labored obsessively, even while he — the greatest “visionary,” literally, of his generation — was slowly going blind. However, on the plus side, the Norman conquest of England brought that country into the European mainstream. And once again, we're traveling with the help of my Francophile partner Steve Smith. In Sainte-Chapelle, the sunlight shines through the stained glass like God’s grace shining down to earth. Limited edition: This two-DVD set includes the 12 newest shows from Season 10 of public television's "Rick Steves' Europe" series, with a bonus extra. This art moment — a sampling of how we share our love of art in our tours — is an excerpt from the new, full-color coffee-table book “Europe’s Top 100 Masterpieces” by Rick Steves and Gene Openshaw. For locals, Reims is "Rance." — you’ve created a picture. Cut into pieces. Get the most out of every day and dollar with Rick Steves France guidebooks, Snapshot guides and Pocket travel guides This art moment — a sampling of how we share our love of art in our tours — is an excerpt from the new, full-color coffee-table book, “Europe’s Top 100 Masterpieces,” by Rick Steves and Gene Openshaw. It only takes 13 — six columns, six buttresses, and a spire. He worked on several canvases at once, moving (with the sun) from one to the next to capture the pond at different times of day. He spent the better part of his life expanding and supporting this effort, and in 1952 was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. The dry and sunny climate has produced good wine and happy tourists since Roman times. The hospital's goal, long before the age of pain killers, was to remind patients that Jesus understood their suffering. The statue became famous for a number of reasons. Gothic architects used new technology to turn dark stone buildings into lanterns of light. Jesus rockets out of the tomb, as this once-mortal man is now transformed into God. A few blocks away, the Unterlinden Museum, my vote for the best small museum in Europe, fills a 750-year-old former convent. Down-to-earth details keep you “reading.” The narrative is framed by a border (top and bottom) with more eye candy — some related to the story, some mere decoration. Roadside degustation signs mean wine tasters welcome. Today we travel to France, where Christmas is the stuff of dreams. I am drinking stars!". The shorter Rick Steves Best of France guidebook focuses on France's top destinations and sights, is in full color, and is updated every other year. A model shows how this is a series of paintings on hinges that pivot like shutters. France is a country with lots of variety, from grand cities to awe-inspiring mountains. The only reason to stop is to pay the modest tolls and to enjoy some of Europe's slickest rest stops. In the central scene, Mary beams as she looks down on her baby boy, while a celestial band of angels serenades them. While busy with locals during the day, it may be quiet at dinner. Prosperity from trade meant money for art. ©2020 Rick Steves' Europe, Inc. | But just a short walk away is another stunning Parisian church, with the best stained glass anywhere. Maison Jund holds my favorite budget beds in Colmar. Craftsmen made the stained glass — which is, essentially, melted sand — using a recipe I call “Stained Glass Supreme”: Melt one part sand with two parts wood ash. Three great artists — Bartholdi, Schongauer, and Grunewald — called Colmar home. To understand the purpose of this particularly gruesome crucifixion scene, it helps to know who paid for it. Bread and water are free. Rieslings and the spicy Gewürztraminer are the fine wines of Alsace. In those days, houses were taxed by square footage at street level, an incentive to build both up and out. This huge tomb is the final resting place of 130,000 unidentified French and Germans who died in the muddy trenches of Verdun. Steves, who has made traveling his life's work, is currently homebound in Edmonds, Washington. The museum offers interesting historical detail describing the creation of Lady Liberty and displays many of Bartholdi's sculptures. Posted on September 6, 2020 by Rick Steves Daily Dose of Europe: Bayeux Tapestry This skinny, 70-yard-long strip of cloth depicts a crucial historical event that helped shape the Europe we know. From our Alsatian home base in Colmar, we'll drive to Verdun, Reims and finish in Épernay. France Travel Guide by Rick Steves For coronavirus (COVID-19) travel information, see our FAQ . Steve: And the wine is named after the grape. Travel with Rick on this video guide to Paris, France and find out what to do on your next trip. Dominique: This is my cellar. Monet landscaped like he painted — filling the “blank canvas” with “brushstrokes” of shrubs and colorful flowers. And on feast days, the priest opened the Crucifixion up at the seam, to reveal the panels on the inside of the polyptych. No signup or install needed. It was purpose-built by King Louis IX — the only French king who is also a saint — to house Jesus’ supposed Crown of Thorns. Four million bottles are exported all over Europe each year. This time we're in France. In the opening scene — the first of about 60 in the tapestry — the reigning King of England, Edward, is presiding on the throne in his palace. Because of the events depicted on the Bayeux tapestry, England got a stable government, contact with the rest of Europe, and a chance to eventually grow into a great European power. Thanks, au revoir, merci. According to historical accounts, Harold fell from his horse. It’s like taking a stroll in the gardens at Monet’s home at Giverny, enjoying his tranquil pond dotted with colorful water lilies. Today, Colmar not only survives, it thrives — with 15th- and 16th-century buildings, rich art treasures, and popular cuisine. And as her knee points one way, her head turns the other. In World War I the cathedral was badly damaged by heavy bombing. To enhance your art experience, be sure to check out Rick Steves Classroom Europe, my free collection of 400+ teachable video clips — including a visit to Monet’s garden at Giverny. This tiny jewel of Gothic architecture is a cathedral of glass like none other. Bernard: It's the same way, but in Burgundy they put only the butter and the herbs and the garlic and in Alsace they put also a bouillon with the butter. And that’s what we see in the Resurrection panel on the right. Alsace is France with a German accent. It's a powerful, somber experience. Here in the Alsace, wine is the primary industry, topic of conversation, and perfect excuse for countless festivals. No uniform currency, different weights and measures, terrible duties every few miles. The small family-run vineyards of many villages like Bennwihr sprang back as large, efficient and successful co-ops. The Battle was won by William. He lifts his visor to shout to his men, when suddenly — shoop! At the much-pummeled Fort Douaumont you can tour an underground bunker and tunnels and see the remnants of a World War I command center. She’s probably Venus, but no one knows for sure. The Latin titles reinforce the main characters and key events. But with his genius, he reinvented the Resurrection. Historic beauty was rarely an excuse to be spared the ravages of World War II. This proudly decorated 16th-century building was the home of a wealthy Colmar merchant. This is the tomb of countless French and German soldiers whose last homes were the muddy trenches of Verdun. Only when you back up do the colors resolve into a single “pink” flower on a “green” lily pad. The restaurants serve sauerkraut...with fine sauces. In the special, Rick visits friends and families in England, France, Norway, Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Italy to reveal their customs and practices of … Fiat lux. Small family run hotels like this are one of the great accommodations values in Europe. Here’s one of my favorites. In 1883, middle-aged Monet, along with his wife and eight kids, settled into a farmhouse in Giverny, near Paris. RICK STEVES ’ EUROPE: French Alps And Lyon Stream now or tune in Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020 at 4 p.m. & 10:30 p.m. on … The devastation of World War II was a hit-or-miss affair in the Alsace. See the Travel Details above for recommendations highlighted in bold, excerpted from Rick's guidebooks. Standing like a flower-child referee between Germany and France, the … Verdun offers a memorable chance to revisit World War I. Notre-Dame has been on everyone’s mind over the last year. In 1429, a young and charismatic Joan of Arc stood next to a reluctant Charles VII to ensure he accepted the crown of France. In our France guidebook, Steve and I recommend a splurge at Restaurant Le Rapp. Her expression is alluring yet aloof. In the Alsace, wineries are typically passed from generation to generation. We’re not in medieval Kansas anymore. This cathedral is to France what Westminster Abbey is to England. Before posting, please read our Community Guidelines. It was finished in 1932. Today, his Alsatian home town is a relaxing and enjoyable getaway. Zermatt, Switzerland: The Matterhorn and the Swiss Alps. In Gothic you've got pointed arches, not round arches — this is a Gothic innovation — which sends the weight of the roof out rather than down therefore we need buttresses to support the walls. Get close to see how Monet worked. They’d gaze upon the crown, ponder Christ’s sacrifice, see the sunlight pouring in like God’s grace as it illuminates Bible lessons in glass…and get a glimpse of the divine. The artist, Matthias Grünewald, created a dark, gruesome, troubling Crucifixion that could not be more bleak. We're exploring the wine road of Alsace — the Route du Vin. Cairo, Egypt: The Egyptian Museum. Rick: Steve, thanks for joining us. To get more, politely ask "encore, s'il vous plait.". The cathedral of Reims is a glorious example of Gothic architecture. To enhance your art experience, you can find a clip related to this artwork at Rick Steves Classroom Europe; just search for Sainte-Chappelle. In Sainte-Chapelle, medieval worshippers could stand immersed in radiant light. With a few key phrases you can get an egg on top of your grilled cheese sandwich, or just the right salad. No one knows. This museum is Colmar's touristic claim to fame. Visitors delight in the region's distinctive cuisine and superb wines. Knights on horseback charge, swordsmen clash, and archers launch arrows, leaving the battlefield strewn with mangled corpses. Learning the stories behind great art can shed new light on our lives today. Venus’ well-proportioned body embodied the balance and orderliness of the Greek universe. The American and British military were careful not to bomb quaintly cobbled Colmar. From manger scenes and mistletoe to wintry wonderlands, RICK STEVES' EUROPEAN CHRISTMAS celebrates the Christmas season throughout the European continent. So if all you want is the best of the French Riviera, this compact Snapshot guide delivers everything you'll need to … Venus’ classic beauty was seen as the ideal of female grace. Even though we’re not visiting Europe right now, I believe a daily dose of travel dreaming can be good medicine. In 1914, Monet, now in his seventies, began a water-lily project on a massive scale. This museum delivers gripping exhibits on the 300 days of the Battle of Verdun, with lots of information in English. Luckily World War II spared the church, and since then it has come to symbolize reconciliation. Vintners here insist their area is the only place entitled to call its bubbly by that name. The tale culminates in one of the most pivotal battles in history: The Battle of Hastings in 1066. Others think she was hugging a statue of a man or leaning on a column. Seven hundred thousand died as waves of Germans and French fought to take and retake the miles of trenches and forts. Historically, the Germans thought the mountains were the logical border The French thought the Rhine River was. Terms of Service | Privacy, Colmar, France: Alsace's Most Enchanting City, Épernay, France: Top Stop for Champagne Purists. Who was this beautiful woman? Listen to Lyon, France: City Of Capitals and 714 more episodes by Rick Steves' Europe Video, free! Posted on October 10, 2020 October 10, 2020 The Alsace — that's the area in between. Like a graphic novel, the Bayeux Tapestry tells the mesmerizing story of how William the Conqueror and Harold of England competed for the English crown. The story begins in London. Rick Steves, America's leading authority on European travel, returns to transport viewers to the continent's bustling cities, quaint villages and picturesque countryside. More intricate details — like folds in the robes or the line of a mouth — are created by scratching or painting the glass. France is one of the largest countries in Western Europe. Centuries of successful wine production have built prosperous and colorful villages. Today this canal only adds to the ambience in a neighborhood locals call "La Petite Venise" — the little Venice. His profound "reverence for life" led him to Africa, where he established a hospital in 1913. To enhance your art experience, you can find clips related to this artwork at Rick Steves Classroom Europe; just search for Bayeux. The Latin words on Mary's halo read: "Pick me also for your child, o holy Virgin.". Rick Steves Classroom Europe; just search for Sainte-Chappelle. Lyon, France: City of Capitals. Historically, the Germans thought the mountains were the logical border The French thought the Rhine River was. Now step farther back to take in the whole picture. Signs are bilingual...so are many names. In the final paintings, he cropped the scene ever closer, until there’s no reference point for the viewer — no shoreline, no horizon, no sense of what’s up or down…leaving you immersed in the experience. For coronavirus (COVID-19) travel information, The meals are served in courses (about five or six), and each one delicious. The lilies float among sun-kissed clouds and blue sky reflected in the water. Hi, I'm Rick Steves, in the French region of Alsace. His once-plain burial shroud is now the colors of the rainbow (painted, legend says, by Grünewald’s assistant, Roy G. Biv). And with German popularity low after World War II, many families with German surnames gave their children French first names. Thanks, Steve, for all the travel tips. Jesus has undergone the “resurrection of the flesh,” and now look at his skin: His perfect white epidermis would have offered hope to all the patients who meditated on the scene. France. In this show we'll experience the unique mix of Alsatian culture by visiting its enchanting cobbled villages, sipping a little wine, viewing art that's still as vibrant as the medieval day it was painted, tasting gourmet Alsatian cuisine, pondering the bloodiest of all WWI battlefields, going gothic at a great vathedral, and finally visiting the bubbly birthplace of Champagne. Four ribs come together to make a pointed arch, which supports the spire. Wow! Lyon, France: City of Capitals - Rick Steves’ Europe Travel Guide … Some towns were spared, while others were destroyed. To enhance your art experience, be sure to check out Rick Steves Classroom Europe, my free collection of 400+ teachable video clips — including a visit to Monet’s garden at Giverny. While Lady Liberty is his most famous work, you'll see several Bartholdi statues gracing Colmar's squares. The balance between fleeting motion and timeless stability made beauty. Dominique: All the other wines are made only with one grape, so. Even vacationers traveling on a shoestring should spring for a fine meal in Alsace. The Venus de Milo — the goddess of love, sculpted in about 100 BC — sums up all that ancient Greece stood for. The jewel of the collection is Matthias Grünewald's grippingly realistic and exquisitely painted Isenheim Altarpiece. Steve: Hey, it's called "mine.". Each lily is a tangled Impressionist smudge composed of several different-colored brushstrokes: green, red, white, lavender, blue. Grünewald’s happy finale is a psychedelic explosion of Resurrection joy. Long popular with French and German tourists, this well preserved old town of 70,000 is often overlooked and underrated by oversees travelers. Steves' first television show, Travels in Europe with Rick Steves, debuted on public television in April 1991 and ended production in 1998. Since then, this bubbly sparkly white wine is synonymous with a first class celebration the world over. Colmar's charms are rooted in a wealthy medieval past. Bernard: Perhaps the escargot? Put it all together, and — voilà! Venus rests on her right foot (that contrapposto pose so popular with classical sculptors). Today, the cathedral is restored and houses many old treasures, as well as a modern one... this 20th-century stained glass created by contemporary artist Marc Chagall. In this travel talk, Rick Steves guidebook co-author Steve Smith describes scintillating Paris, Normandy's D-Day beaches, Loire châteaux, Dordogne cave art, fortified Carcassonne, Burgundy vineyards, Alpine peaks, hill towns of Provence, and the glitzy French Riviera — and teaches skills for traveling in France. He turned Giverny into a garden paradise. The twisting pose gives a balanced S-curve to her body. Sainte-Chapelle was completed in a mere six years (Notre-Dame, just a few steps away, took 200), creating a harmonious structure that’s the essence of Gothic. Travelers who plan ahead enjoy big rewards. Colmar's knack for trade and its local industries, such as the leather business in this tanner's quarter, added up to a strong economy. Steve: What else do you recommend Bernard? The vineyards overhead conceal a labyrinth of some 30 miles of wine caves meandering into the surrounding hills. A tiny seam running down the middle of the painting reminded everyone that there was a better world lying beyond. Most of all, Venus brought with her an air of mystery. Trading leagues were reacting to the business problems that came with feudalism. This production line handles 10,000 bottles an hour, and by the end of the day hundreds of tons of grapes are processed. Rick: Steve, thanks for joining us. Alsatian towns like Eguisheim are historic mosaics mixing flower-bedecked fountains, cheery old inns, and characteristic wineries colored in with half-timbered pastels. To remove those barriers to free trade, many medieval European cities banded together to form trading leagues — like the Decapolis. Rick Steves clanging the biggest bell (10 tons!) Blow glass into a cylinder shape, cut lengthwise, and lay flat to cool. But Europe still wears the scars of the "war that did not end all wars." Guide: You can see in our enoteca we keep our oldest bottles of Champagne. As I travel with Rick Steves’ Europe Tours, research my guidebooks, and make new TV shows, I’m reporting on my experiences in Italy, Portugal, France, Ireland, England, Scotland, Germany, Switzerland, and more. Wine continues to fuel the local economy. Rick Steves is a travel writing guru, for anyone unfamiliar with the pencil yellow and navy blue guidebooks ubiquitous on the streets of Europe. The cathedral of Reims is a glorious example of Gothic architecture, and one of Europe's greatest churches. He orders his brother-in-law Duke Harold to ride off to France. Rick Steves France, the complete guide, offers more coverage of more destinations in a mostly black-and-white format, and is updated annually. Standing like a flower-child referee between Germany and France, the Alsace has weathered many invasions. With Rick Steves, Andreas Clemens, Georg Reichlmayr, Holger Zimmer. He adorned his hometown with many statues — most, it seems with one arm held high. Harvest time is in the fall. She then lifts her left leg, setting her whole body in motion. Post questions and answers about travel in France. And all these centuries as a political shuttlecock between Germany and France have given the Alsace a hybrid culture. Verdun is a chilling reminder of one of the most costly battles of World War I. What is she thinking? But it worked for the most beautiful city in the Alsace. 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