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Astronomical Clock of Besancon Cathedral

Rue du Chapitre, 25000, Besancon, France
+33 3 81 81 12 76
Review Highlights
Wow! Just wow!

You will never get closer to an increidble feat of mid 1800's engineering. This clock accurately... read more

Reviewed 10 September 2017
Unbelievable detail

This piece is an absolute masterpiece, even if you don't find the inner workings of a watch or... read more

Reviewed 10 September 2017
Cape Town, South Africa
Read all 201 reviews
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Built between 1858 and 1860 by Auguste Lucien Vérité, the astronomical clock has a precise and complex mechanism consisting of over 30,000 parts and 11 movements. Worked by weights, some operate chimes and automata. The 57 faces provide a lot of information: calendars, the tides in 8 ports, eclipses… Visitors can look all around the clock and see its interior mechanisms. Open: > Tours at 9.50 a.m., 10.50 a.m., 11.50 a.m., 2.50 p.m., 3.50 p.m., 4.50 p.m., 5.50 p.m. Closed: > Tuesdays. > Wednesdays form 1st October to 31st March. > January. > 1st January, 1st May, 1st November, 11th November and 25th December. Admission fees: Adults : 3 €; Concessions (18 to 25) = 2,50 €; Free admission: minors under 18*; Free admission: 18-25 years old* (citizens of one of the 27 countries of the EU or are non-European permanent residents of France) * excluding school groups
  • Excellent58%
  • Very good32%
  • Average8%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“tides” (4 reviews)
“moon” (4 reviews)
Rue du Chapitre, 25000, Besancon, France
+33 3 81 81 12 76
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Reviews (201)
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1 - 10 of 40 reviews

Reviewed 10 September 2017

You will never get closer to an increidble feat of mid 1800's engineering. This clock accurately times everything from time, date, leap years, moon cycles, eclipses, tide cycles and more. All driven off pendulums and weights. One of the dials only changes every 250 years,...More

Thank HenderTravellers
Reviewed 10 September 2017

This piece is an absolute masterpiece, even if you don't find the inner workings of a watch or clock intriguing at all. It is housed in the Besancon Cathedral and was made around 1860. Definitely worth seeing. Take the time and walk around the clock...More

Thank CorneCapeTown
Reviewed 30 July 2017 via mobile

I highly recommend the 30min visit, only 2€ and very informative, you get to know all from this piece of art and engineering

Thank Thomas R
Reviewed 28 July 2017

The clock is lovely and I am sure justifies closer attention than I paid it. But today all one really needs is Google.

1  Thank pauln690
Reviewed 10 January 2017

This clock reminded me of the astronomical clock in Strasbourg, except that you can get much closer to the inner workings of this one. Terrific details.

Thank AmeriEuroMan
Reviewed 27 August 2016

This clock is almost hidden on the side of the Cathedral of St John. We were there when it's operation was explained in French ( we do not understand French) however an English document was given to us to read. There is a small fee....More

1  Thank davidu2219
Reviewed 21 August 2016

Every 10 minutes before the hour you can enter and will be introduced to this incredible specimen of historical craftsmenship. Dozens of time-related elements are worked with great dedication into the clock, that has dozens of round displays. Nice to see.

1  Thank Paul D
Reviewed 31 July 2016

This is a beautiful clock with superb details. Unlike in many locations, you can get very close to it to examine. Well worth the visit - check out the rest of the beautiful cathedral at the same time.

1  Thank Katri80
Reviewed 17 July 2016

Extraordinary piece of engineering. Would have liked to her something about it but the guide who was in full flow in french ignored us completely.

Thank alivealiveo
Reviewed 4 June 2016

We walked all the way up to the cathedral and the to the entry of the actual clock entry door only to read a notice in French , which we worked out , it was telling us it was closed on Tuesday, and today was...More

Thank Alan F
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