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Friday, May 24, 2024

Things To Do in the Town of Cognac – Tour a Museum


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Here are three key museums you can visit during your visit to the town of Cognac, France.

Le Musee d’art et d’histoire – MAH
This museum is located in the Cognac city center and the collections are housed in an elegant building which was originally a mansion built for the Dupuy family in 1838.  The museum also opens onto the beautiful public garden of the town hall (Hotel de Ville) which was designed in the late 19th century.  The museum houses several collections.  There are archeological finds from the region including a Neolithic canoe, as well as sculptures, furniture, ceramics, art glass and fine art.  There is a Rodin plaster, a 15th century carved chest, a rare collection of Art Nouveau art glass, Delft pottery, and paintings from the 16th century to contemporary artists including those from French, Italian, Flemish and German artists.
Located in the city center with parking available in the yard of the museum.
48 bd Denfert-Rochereau
16100 Cognac
For more information:

Espace Découverte en Pays du Cognac
This is an excellent starting point for any visit to the town and region.  It is located on the site of the very oldest cognac company, Maison Augier, which was founded in 1643.  It is an interpretive center about the history of the countryside and boasts interactive displays that help the visitor discover the Romanesque heritage, the history surrounding the slow moving Charente River that winds its way through town, the birthplace of King Francois I, and the local flora and fauna.  The center also has suggestions for strolls and routes through the countryside.  Displays, texts, and audios are both in French and English.  There is no entrance fee and a typical visit lasts about 45 minutes.  After taste testing all of the local Cognac, a countryside stroll might be just the thing to do!
Located in Salle Verte Square; near the Musee des Arts du Cognac.
Les Ramparts
Place de la Salle Verte
16100 Cognac
For more information: www.espacedecouverte.fr

Le Musee des arts du cognac (MACO)
This museum, first opened in 2004, is a small museum beautifully built into the old walls of the historic town.  It gives visitors a great background on how cognac is made and is a perfect place to start your visit of the region – even before you embark on your tastings at the great cognac houses!  Through photos, videos, displays and artifacts the museum shows the history of cognac and its production.  They tell the story of cognac from the cultivation of the grapes, to distillation, blending, cooperage (barrel making), bottle making, packaging and promotion.  Some of the highlights include old cognac making implements, such as a 1760 oak press and a 1898 semi-automatic bottle making machine, an outstanding collection of labels, bottles, and vintage advertising, and a smell test of different flavors within cognac.   Your visit can take an hour or more depending on your interest and time. The cost is minimal and at certain times entrance may be free.  There are English descriptions throughout the museum and there are also audio headsets available.
Located near the marina on the banks of the Charente.
Place de la Salle Verte
16100 Cognac
For more information:

Le Musee des arts du cognac (MACO)
Le Musee des arts du cognac (MACO)

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