Visit Agen in winter : our 5 good reasons to discover the capital of prunes!

Agen
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Are you staying in Lot-et-Garonne? We reveal our 5 good reasons to visit Agen! This city walk is one of the essential winter activities. A visit to Agen is a must to discover Lot-et-Garonne. This prefecture is also an important economic capital of Aquitaine. On the banks of the Garonne, it benefits from a pleasant environment which encourages a bucolic stroll along the water and along its old stones. We take you for a cultural, historical and artistic tour of the beautiful city of Agen.

Opening :   © JackF / Adobe Stock

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Our 5 good reasons to visit Agen

1) Stroll along the banks of the Garonne to the port of Agen

To enter the city, we offer a stroll along the water, punctuated by various interesting tourist points. The Agen Canal Bridge is truly an architectural curiosity not to be missed. It is a stone bridge size of Quercy, built in the 19th century. Part of the Garonne canal, it has been used since 1847 to ferry boats over the river. At its entrance, there is a waiting area and a lock system. It provides access to the port of Gare du Pin. A walk takes you along the quays of the canal, takes you across the canal bridge, with a magnificent view of the Garonne, and ends at the port. You can extend it into the historic city center.


Agen

The Pont Canal d'Agen, a curiosity to discover. Photo @CC BY 2.0  Rui Ornelas

2) Stroll through the historic city center of Agen

On the banks of the river and in the heart of an agricultural and wine-growing region, Agen is a rich city, which lives on its river trade. Many merchants settled there in beautiful residences. It therefore has an architectural heritage from all eras. Here are some streets to integrate into your tour of the city :  

  • In the historic city center, there are many medieval alleys, lined with half-timbered houses, notably Beauville, Émile Sentini and Cornières streets...
  • Rue des Augustins takes you from Saint-Caprais d'Agen cathedral to a charming public garden, in a small square at its intersection with rue Puits-du-Saumon.
  • The central square is famous for its beautiful mansions.
  • To discover another period of history, stroll along the great Haussmannian boulevards of Agen : the boulevards of the Republic and Carnot.

If you want a more detailed overview of the city, follow us on a stroll through Agen (fr).

the good idea

Visit Agen without tiring yourself by using the self-service electric bicycle service : Tempo Vélo (fr).


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3) Visit the Museum of Fine Arts

Its strategic position has fueled envy throughout its history. The city has long been torn between the Bordeaux territory and the Toulouse region. These influences have marked its culture and its artists. The Agen Museum of Fine Arts is housed in a group of four Renaissance-style mansions. It presents a collection of more than 3000 works. If you want to know more, here is our guide to visit the Museum of Fine Arts in Agen (fr).


Agen   Agen

Lose yourself in the medieval side of Agen! Photos @ CC BY 2.0 John Seb Barber  

4) Admire the religious heritage

The Rocamadour pilgrimage route crosses Agen. Its religious heritage is therefore remarkable. As a priority, we advise you to visit the Saint-Caprais Cathedral in Agen. It is listed as a “ UNESCO World Heritage ”, on the “ Chemins de Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle ” sites. Its Gothic style and surprising decoration mark its visitors. His paintings and gilding, of Sicilian inspiration, are luminous and give it an almost exotic charm. Its stained glass windows are also magnificent.

The Jacobins Convent is a gem and a haven of peace in the city. The Jacobins Church has a painted vaulted heart in the shape of a palm tree, impressive for its size, but also for its decoration. Its magnificent stained-glass windows illuminate the interior of the church. It is a decoration worthy of the relics of Saint Thomas Aquinas, which can be seen under his altar. Its cloister is very pleasant and calm. It brings a real moment of serenity to this visit.


Agen

Photo @CC BY-NC-ND 2.0   kristobalite

5) Agen Markets

Take a tour of the markets of Agen will allow you to discover and taste the local products : prunes from Agen, hazelnuts from the Lot valley, tomatoes from Marmande, garriguette strawberries, porcini mushrooms and foie gras, ham from Tonneins, wines from Buzet and Armagnac… and regional specialties : gourmet salads, wood pigeon salmis, Penne-d'Agenais sweet tourtière… Here are the markets in Agen :

  • The Pin farmer's market is held in the Halle du Pin on Wednesday and Sunday mornings.
  • The Farmer's Market at Place Jasmin takes place on Saturday mornings.
  • An organic market is located on the Place des Laitiers on Tuesday morning.
  • The covered market is located on Place Durand from Tuesday to Sunday morning.

Did you know Agen is considered the capital of prunes and yet it is not the land of cultivation of this famous fruit. If we associate it with Agen, it is because the production was distributed in France and abroad, from the Garonne and therefore from the port located in Agen. This purple plum actually comes from the Lot valley, around Villeneuve-sur-Lot. Right next door, in Granges-sur-Lot, is the Maison du Pruneau and its museum which will tell you all about its history.


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Taste the Agen prune (does it suit you ?!)!

Stroll in the natural spaces around Agen

The suspended footbridge spans the Garonne near the Frayère d'Alose nature reserve. About 260 meters long and 20 meters high, it is pedestrianized and offers an overview of the city. It is the ideal place to take a beautiful photo of Agen!


The Frayère d'Alose nature reserve is generally a site to be observed from afar. Its vocation is to protect the Great Shad, a species of migratory fish, emblematic of the Garonne and which has become rare. France is the only country which manages to maintain its population, in particular thanks to this space of protection. The association which manages the reserve organizes guided tours.


The Passeligne-Pelissier natural park is located at the exit of Agen, in the town of Boé. It is a large natural area on the banks of the Garonne and has two large lakes that give it their names : Passeligne and Pélissier. It is the ideal place to practice a sporting activity, to relax with family or to recharge your batteries in the heart of nature. Hiking or cycling paths, collective sports grounds, play areas… everything is planned to enjoy nature and take a breath of fresh air!


The hillsides of the Hermitage, overlooks the city and offers you a new angle of view on the city. At the start of the river, you go through the "Gravier" on the bank of the Garonne, then you go up on the hillsides and "Petit Nice". This astonishing name takes on its full meaning when you arrive at the top and lay your eyes on these beautiful villas in the "Roaring Twenties" style. It's a timeless and surprising hike!


agen

Agen, to discover all year round! © david debray / Adobe Stock

Organize your stay in Agen

To enjoy your stay in Agen, we advise you :

For accommodation :

For a lunch break :  

  • Burger's Park is a restaurant with western decor, fun, fun and family-friendly. Its inflatable playground will delight the youngest. Its billiard area, table football and bar will also be very popular with older children!

To have a good evening :  

  • Le M et Moi is a trendy, modern and friendly place, between the brasserie, the wine bar and the tapas bar.
  • To discover unusual beverages, go to the cocktail bar, The take-off-bar.
  • For a more sporty and traditional atmosphere, this is the Beer Temple for you!
  • Finally, to end the evening, it's at the Sho'tz bar that you can have fun and dance until the end of the night...
  • To have practical information and locate Agen, consult its file on our guide and the site of the tourist office : Destination Agen (fr).


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We hope that these few ideas made you want to visit Agen during your next winter vacation in Lot-et-Garonne.

Did you like this article? Find more on our Blog.

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