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The sight of the cathedral won't give you a hint of the massive destruction is has faced in the past. During the French war of religion, the church was almost completely destroyed. It almost took a decade to rebuilt the Orleans cathedral to pay tribute to Joan of Arc.
Like all other true French cities, Orleans also has an art museum displaying the splendid work of van Dyck, Breughel, Delacroix, Courbet, Picasso, Vélazquez, Corregio, and Gauguin. Musée des Beaux-Arts has the second most extensive collection of pastels and displays a total of 700 artistic masterpieces.
The musée Historique et Archéologique is made in a 15th-century mansion called the Hotel Cabu. The museum displays 2000 years old bronze statues, mythological figures, animals, the Gallo-Roman treasure of Neuvy-en-Sullia. It also showcases the remnants of medieval buildings of the Loire valley region.
Parc Floral de la Source is a semi-wild park offering lush scenery and serene beauty. The human-made part of the garden is paved beautifully with a wide range of flowers like roses, irises, dahlias, and alpine flowers. You will also see aviaries and butterfly houses on this side of the park. The other part of the park is hills with deep oak forest and animal enclosures.
The whole city of Orleans and its monuments are intended to pay homage to the French Heroine, Joan of Arc. Place du Martroi is a large pedestal area with the statue of Joan of Arc on horseback. You can enjoy the beautiful view with an energizing coffee at the cafes along with the place.
Hôtel Groslot was built in the 16th century as a city hall of Orleans. The hotel has a fascinating history as it has hosted kings, queens, prince, and princesses. Guided tours will let you learn about the royal relations and the lives of the nobles who stayed here. You may also learn a lot about the life and struggle of Joan of Arc.
The sizeable old town of Orleans is filled with new and old buildings, including half-timbered houses, renaissance styled architecture and cobblestone streets. If you want to explore deep into the town, park your car and wander in the narrow road with rustic colombages, street-side cafes and restaurants, and 19th-century mansions.
Île Charlemagne is a 70 hectares' massive park with a beautiful lake of about 28 hectares. You can swim in the lake or enjoy the view from afar. You can also polish your kayaking or canoeing skills by hiring a canoe or Kayak.
Orleans is a perfect excursion destination in the Loire valley. The city is just 132 km from Paris, making it an ideal day trip from the capital.