According to clothingexpress, Rouen is the capital of Upper Normandy, a city on the banks of the Seine, part of the Paris agglomeration. Rouen is rightfully considered the pearl of Northern France with incredible architecture and a rich past: the Old Market Square was a witness to the execution of Joan of Arc, and perfectly preserved medieval houses are considered a European example of half-timbered style. Rouen served as a source of inspiration for many people of art: Gustave Flaubert painted Madame Bovary here, and Claude Monet created the famous series of impressionistic landscapes. Here you can buy amazing blue and white ceramics, eat the most delicious French apples to your heart’s content, and wander all day through the endless Norman forests in the vicinity of the city.
In the radiant blue firmament,
In starry diamond dust,
Threads of swift lines
Weaved gray nets.
Communication and Wi-Fi
Mobile communication in France is an expensive pleasure. For those who come here for a short time and do not plan to talk with their compatriots for hours, it is more profitable to use roaming. If you trust local mobile operators more when traveling, choose any of the main French companies: Orange, Bouygues Telecom, SFR or Free. The rates for the first three are about the same. It is better to take tariffs without a monthly fee, which cease to operate immediately after the termination of payments. The Free operator has been operating on the market since 2012 and offers more affordable prices compared to competitors.
Free Wi-Fi can be found in some cafes and restaurants in the historic center of Rouen, but it is most convenient to choose hotels and hostels that provide guests with free Internet access.
Pass en Liberte
In order not to miss any of the attractions of Rouen, it is worth purchasing the Pass en Liberte (website in French). This is a special tourist ticket that is valid in the city and its surroundings and allows you to get good discounts at famous museums, restaurants and shops.
The Pass en Liberte program includes more than 260 partners, including the Museum of Ceramics and the Museum of Fine Arts, as well as numerous castles and abbeys located in the vicinity of Rouen. Be sure to visit the Château d’Ethelan, built in the flamboyant Gothic style on the banks of the Seine. The monumental medieval abbeys of Jumiège, Bonport and Saint-Georges also deserve attention. After enjoying the excursion program, you can look into restaurants and shopping centers from the Pass en Liberte list.
The card is sold at the Tourist Office of Rouen on the Cathedral Square for 10 EUR. It is valid for a year and cannot be transferred to other persons.
On Saturdays and Sundays, Place Saint-Marc hosts a market where you can buy fresh produce and flowers from suburban farms. It also sells antique and simply used interior items, furniture and crockery. Foodstuffs can be purchased at the Old Market, bursting with abundance, and cheese rows deserve special attention.
Ruan is famous for its white and blue ceramics, somewhat reminiscent of traditional Chinese dishes. Once there were 22 factories in the region, the most famous of which are Caussy, Guillibaud, Bertin and Mouchard. Today, artisan workshops are located on Rue Saint-Romain, next to Rouen Cathedral. Here you can see the masters at work, and at the same time buy original ceramics.
Linen products are also worth buying in Rouen: bed linen, home textiles, clothes and accessories.
The mechanism of the Rouen Great Clock is one of the oldest and most massive in all of Europe.
What to try
The most famous local dish is the Rouenese duck, which is prepared directly in front of the client according to a complex scheme: coated with mustard, roasted on a skewer and grill, and finally the juice obtained during cooking is squeezed using a special silver press. The duckling is served with a Rouen sauce based on Bordeaux wines and shallots, with a sprig of celery and a baked apple. In Rouen, there is even a special order (L’ordre des Canardiers), which is awarded to cooks who honor the traditions of cooking duck in Rouen, and gourmets who are known as connoisseurs.
Rouen is also famous for apples: baked, serving as a filling for various pies, in the form of juice, cider, calvados and other local intoxicating drinks.
We recommend trying Rouen chocolate and all kinds of desserts and sweets based on it.
On the third weekend of October, the “Feast of the Belly” is held in the square in front of the Old Market, where you can see and taste everything that the Rouen region is famous for.
Cafes and Restaurants in Rouen
The best restaurants in the city are concentrated in the vicinity of the Church of Joan of Arc. Here you can taste both traditional Rouen dishes and culinary masterpieces of Norman cuisine in general. The city has many small bistros with sandwiches, desserts and soft drinks. Pancake shops are common in the northern part, as well as small Tunisian eateries with takeaway food. A cluster of trendy bars – between the Old Market Square and Rue Thiers. In some of them you can not only enjoy a meal, but also buy souvenirs: postcards and calendars with the symbols of the city.
Kitchens in many establishments in Rouen are only open during lunch (12:00-14:00) and dinner (19:00-22:00). The rest of the time you can have a cup of coffee with dessert or a glass of wine with a light snack. Most famous restaurants are closed on Sundays.
Ready-made menus of several dishes with a total cost of 12–20 EUR are popular in Rouen cafes. Business lunches cost 10 EUR, dinner in an inexpensive establishment costs about 30 EUR. In premium restaurants, prices for hot dishes reach 30–45 EUR, a meal with wine will cost 50–70 EUR per person.
The climate of Rouen is temperate, with mild winters and warm summers. From the sweltering heat, the city is saved by the influence of the English Channel. It rains throughout the year, there is a lot of precipitation. Snow in winter is a rarity, as are clear days: from December to February and in the off-season it is almost always overcast here. Due to the high humidity in Rouen, even the slightest drop in temperature is acutely felt. At the same time, winters here are still an order of magnitude warmer than in other northern cities of France. The hottest and sunniest month of the year is August. It is not surprising that it is at this time that there are most tourists here.