Tourism

The town hall

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Located in the heart of the city, the present city hall was designed by architect Louis Debrouwer, who pioneered the use of reinforced concrete. Its construction symbolises the merger of the towns of Saint-Pierre and Calais in 1885. The general architecture of this monument is based on Flemish Neo-Renaissance style with Tudor details. Its stately 75-metre-high belfry was listed as World Heritage by UNESCO in 2005.

The grand staircase leading to the first floor, where the wedding room and main reception room are located, is decorated with magnificent stained glass windows. These were made in the Dagrant workshops in Bordeaux and recount the liberation of Calais from English domination by the Duke of Guise in 1558 on three bays. The city hall is famous for having been the setting of the marriage of Charles de Gaulle and Yvonne Vendroux in 1921.

Hôtel de ville
Place du Soldat Inconnu, Calaisv
Tel : 00 33 (0) 3 21 46 62 00

crédit photo : F. Collier

 

The belfry

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Thanks to major renovation work in 2011, you can now climb to the top of the Belfry to admire magnificent views of the city of Calais.

Bell towers are symbolic in the north of France and Belgium, and are often joined to the City Hall. This particular square-shaped tower is 72 m (236 ft) high, and is joined to the main building by an arch.

Informations visits : 00 33 (0) 3 21 46 20 53

  

 

 

 

 crédit photo : F. Collier


The Watchtower

Tour-du-guet.pngBuilt in the 13th century, this tower is the oldest monument in Calais. Firstly used as a lookout, this tower suffered a lot throughout the centuries : earthquake in the 16th century, fire in the 17th’. It was used as a telegraph relay and a lighthouse until 1848. While over 70% of Calais was destroyed at the end of World War II, the tower was spared in both world wars. It is not possible to visit the tower.

La Tour du Guet
Place d’Armes, Calais





The lighthouse

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Located in the Courgain Maritime district, the 58-metre-high lighthouse towers over the city. Built in 1848 to replace the lantern of the watch tower, the building has withstood the bombardments of World War II and today it offers a splendid panorama of the sea, the city and the countryside when you have ascended its 271 steps. A discovery room shows the history of lighthouses, beacons and maritime signals.

Le Phare de Calais

Bd des Alliés, Calais
0033 (0) 3 21 34 33 34
www.pharedecalais.com

 

 

The International City of Lace and Fashion

Cit-Dentelle.pngLocated in the Saint-Pierre district, the historic centre of the lace industry in Calais, the International City of Lace and Fashion is set in an authentic collective factory that is typical of the 1870s. Its collections are spread over 2500 m2, divided in fives galleries where the know-how and techniques, the applications as well as the most contempory aspects of lace (fashion, design, applied arts…) are displayed. Since 2011, a 3D booth takes very precise measurements of your vital statistics and allows you to create your own avatar!
Throughout the year, numerous events highlight the vibrance of the Cité but also lectures and workshops. The resource centre and the library are opened to professionals and research workers.


Cité Internationale de la Dentelle et de la Mode
135 Quai du Commerce, Calais
00 33 (0) 3 21 00 42 30
www.cite-dentelle.fr
 

The WWII Museum

Muse-de-Mmoire.pngThe WWII Mémorial Museum, located in the heart of the city in an authentic blockhouse of the Kriegsmarine (German War Navy), will let you relive the dire fate of the inhabitants of Calais during the Second World War by means of numerous photographs, press cuttings and objects from everyday life.

Musée de Mémoire 39-45
Parc St-Pierre, Calais
00 33 (0) 3 21 34 21 57
museeguerrecalais.free.fr


 

The Fine Arts Museum

Muse-des-Beaux-Arts.pngThe museum is located alongside Richelieu Park in the city’s centre. 

It houses collections focusing on five areas of interest: local history, painting, graphic arts, 19th and 20th-century sculpture around Auguste Rodin, and contemporary art, in particular from the British Isles.

A special place has been allotted to the 1-in-10 scale model of Chapel of Light, the public commission entrusted to the internationally renowned English sculptor Anthony Caro, for the Church of Saint-Jean Baptiste in Bourbourg (Northern France).

In 2008, the Rodin Museum in Paris deposited 24 major works from its collections at the Calais Museum of Fine Arts: original plaster casts, and bronze, terracotta and ceramic heads for the sculptor’s most famous monument, the Burghers of Calais.

Focusing on Calais and its artists, Calais, d’ici et d’ailleurs offers a new perspective on the city’s art, history and heritage. The geographical location of Calais, goes some way to explaining the city’s relationship with the great European artistic centres. It is this context that we present this selection of works from the 16th through to the 21st century.

Contemporary works by Philippe Ramette, Jean-Luc Mylayne, François Morellet and Richard Wentworth are confronted and associated with older paintings and sculptures by Balthasar Van der Ast, Jean Dubuffet, Pierre Alechinsky, Antoine Bourdelle and François Pompon, bringing to the fore the whimsically offbeat world depicted in Lewis Carroll’s two famous stories, Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass.

Musée des Beaux-Arts
Rue Richelieu, Calais
00 33 (0) 3 21 46 48 40
www.musee.calais.fr / musee@mairie-calais.fr

 

 

Tourism

Discounted entry on production of wine fair ticket or travel ticket * from UK to France dated 8th, 9th or 10th March 2013

* P&O Ferries and Eurotunnel tickets only

 www.welcometocalais.com

 

A series of themed visits of the city takes place from June to September. Further information from the Calais Côte d’Opale Tourist Information Office.

Looking for ideas of what to do close by ?
Come to Calais and have an unforgettable stay !

Culture, leisure, food, bargain : the whole town of Calais offers the best this summer !
A day trip or holiday with family of friends, enjoy the charm and richness of this port town !