Cognac is not only a world-famous liquor, but it is also a beautiful and dynamic city. Situated on the Charente River, the majority of the town has been built on the river's left bank, with the smaller right bank area known as the Saint Jacques district.
The town has been linked to the cultivation of vines since the Middle Ages and to trading in wine since the 12th century. A river town bathed by the Charente, Cognac sent wines by sea, from the ancient vineyards of Poitou as far as Holland and the Scandinavian countries. Located on the pilgrimage route to Santiago de Compostela, the town owes its wealth and success to King François I.
In the medieval part of town, you will be able to explore the narrow, cobbled-streets that are hemmed by townhouses dating back to the 15th and 18th centuries, and the Cognac-maturing warehouses along the river. The buildings are made out of the local white stone, making the architecture attractive and distinctive.
We recommend a stop at the Musée des Arts du Cognac that opened in 2004 - the small museum is beautifully built into the old walls of the historic town and gives you a great background on Cognac producing - it makes for a perfect starting point before you embark on the visit of the Cognac Houses of the region.