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“amazing ingenuity”

Astronomical Clock of Besancon Cathedral
Ranked #5 of 96 things to do in Besancon
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: 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
Reviewed 20 March 2014

Admittance is permitted at certain times so don't think you can just show up at any time and get in. The room where the clock is located is quite small and cramped if there are many people there at the same time. If you like gears and animated characters you'll like this attraction. A visit only takes about 30 minutes.

1  Thank James M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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31 - 35 of 204 reviews

Reviewed 15 March 2014

A mechanical engineer's dream, but also beautiful work of art. Allow around 20-30 minutes for the talk

2  Thank Jonty P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 March 2014

Amazing clock -you will not believe how many components -30,000 have gone into this -it tells time in different cities and has moving pictures. Make sure you get thee before 10 mins to the hour to get the full effect of the striking clock and all the changes!!!

2  Thank sharon1966
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 August 2013

As said by others only tours at 10 to the hour, usually a break for lunch. We went at 11.50. The entrance is at the base of the tower outside the cathedral on the side facing the citadelle. The mechanics of the timepiece are amazing with something like 40 dials telling all sorts of time related things including the time in some other cities of the world. Talk in french with english card, but happy to answer questions. Well worth half an hour of your time.

3  Thank sidestr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 August 2013

Well worth the climb to the Cathedral, but check times for tour. (usually 10 minutes to the hour.
Session is in French, but an English translation card can be borrowed for the duration of the lecture.

1  Thank Keith H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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