From top to bottom: Palace of the Dukes and States of Burgundy, Panorama of the historical center seen from the Cathedral of Dijon, and the Jardin Darcy.
Flag of Dijon
Coat of arms of Dijon
Location of Dijon
Dijon is located in France
Dijon is located in Bourgogne-Franche-Comté
Coordinates: 47°19′00″N 5°01′00″E / 47.316667°N 5.016667°E / 47.316667; 5.016667
CantonDijon-1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6
IntercommunalityDijon Métropole
 • Mayor (2020–2026) François Rebsamen[1] (PS)
40.41 km2 (15.60 sq mi)
 • Density3,900/km2 (10,000/sq mi)
Demonym(s)Dijonnais (masculine)
Dijonnaise (feminine)
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)
INSEE/Postal code
21231 /21000
Elevation220–410 m (720–1,350 ft)
(avg. 245 m or 804 ft)
Websitewww.dijon.fr Edit this at Wikidata
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km2 (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.

Dijon (UK: /ˈdʒɒ̃/, US: /dˈʒn/,[3][4] French: [diʒɔ̃] )[a] is a city that serves as the prefecture of the Côte-d'Or department and of the Bourgogne-Franche-Comté region in eastern France.[5] As of 2017 the commune had a population of 156,920.

The earliest archaeological finds within the city limits of Dijon date to the Neolithic period. Dijon later became a Roman settlement named Divio, located on the road between Lyon and Paris. The province was home to the Dukes of Burgundy from the early 11th until the late 15th centuries, and Dijon became a place of tremendous wealth and power, one of the great European centres of art, learning, and science.[6]

The city has retained varied architectural styles from many of the main periods of the past millennium, including Capetian, Gothic, and Renaissance. Many still-inhabited town-houses in the city's central district date from the 18th century and earlier. Dijon's architecture is distinguished by, among other things, toits bourguignons (Burgundian polychrome roofs) made of glazed terracotta tiles of various colours arranged in geometric patterns.

Dijon holds an International and Gastronomic Fair every year in the northern-hemisphere autumn. With over 500 exhibitors and 200,000 visitors every year, it is one of the ten most important fairs in France.[citation needed] Dijon also hosts every three years the international flower show Florissimo. Dijon has become famous for Dijon mustard, which originated in 1856, when Jean Naigeon of Dijon substituted verjuice, the acidic "green" juice of not-quite-ripe grapes, for vinegar in the traditional mustard recipe. Dijon is a green city with an important tertiary sector, as well as a regional economic center with a diversified fabric, a traditional food-processing center (Dijon crême de cassis and kir, gingerbread, Lanvin chocolate...) and a renowned pharmaceutical sector.

On 4 July 2015, UNESCO registered the historical centre of the city as a World Heritage site, as one of the components of the "Climats, terroirs of Burgundy" site, because of its historical importance in regulating the system of wine production in Burgundy.[7]


See also: Timeline of Dijon

The earliest archaeological finds within the city limits of Dijon date to the Neolithic period. Dijon later became a Roman settlement called Divio, which may mean sacred fountain, located on the road from Lyon to Paris. Saint Benignus, the city's apocryphal patron saint, is said to have introduced Christianity to the area before being martyred.

This province was home to the Dukes of Burgundy from the early 11th until the late 15th century, and Dijon was a place of tremendous wealth and power and one of the great European centres of art, learning, and science. The Duchy of Burgundy was key in the transformation of medieval times toward early modern Europe. The Palace of the Dukes of Burgundy now houses the city hall and a museum of art.

In 1513, Swiss and Imperial armies invaded Burgundy and besieged Dijon, which was defended by the governor of the province, Louis II de la Trémoille. The siege was extremely violent, but the town succeeded in resisting the invaders. After long negotiations, Louis II de la Trémoille managed to persuade the Swiss and the Imperial armies to withdraw their troops and also to return three hostages who were being held in Switzerland. During the siege, the population called on the Virgin Mary for help and saw the town's successful resistance and the subsequent withdrawal of the invaders as a miracle. For those reasons, in the years following the siege the inhabitants of Dijon began to venerate Notre-Dame de Bon-Espoir (Our Lady of Good Hope). Although a few areas of the town were destroyed, there are nearly no signs of the siege of 1513 visible today. However, Dijon's museum of fine arts has a large tapestry depicting this episode in the town's history: it shows the town before all subsequent destruction (particularly that which occurred during the French Revolution) and is an example of 16th-century art.

A system of purified water for the citizens of Dijon was constructed by Henry Darcy a quarter-century before Paris was so supplied.[8]

Dijon was also occupied by anti-Napoleonic coalitions in 1814, by the Prussian army in 1870–71, and by Nazi Germany beginning in June 1940, during WWII, when it was bombed by US Air Force B-17 Flying Fortresses,[9] before the liberation of Dijon by the French Army and the French Resistance, 11 September 1944.


Dijon is situated at the heart of a plain drained by two small converging rivers: the Suzon, which crosses it mostly underground from north to south, and the Ouche, on the southern side of town. Farther south is the côte, or hillside, of vineyards that gives the department its name. Dijon lies 310 km (193 mi) southeast of Paris, 190 km (118 mi) northwest of Geneva, and 190 km (118 mi) north of Lyon.


Dijon features an oceanic climate (Cfb) with continental influence under the Köppen climate classification. The city is highly influenced by its position far inland in Northeastern France. Thus, winters are cool to cold with moderate frosts at night and thawing conditions during the day while summers are warm to hot and humid with frequent thunderstorms.

Town Sunshine





National average 1,973 770 14 22 40
Dijon 1,852.8 759.8 23.2 27.5 66.8[11]
Paris 1,661 637 12 18 10
Nice 2,724 767 1 29 1
Strasbourg 1,693 665 29 29 56
Brest 1,605 1,211 7 12 75

Climate data for Dijon (1991–2020 averages, extremes 1921−present)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 16.5
Mean daily maximum °C (°F) 5.6
Daily mean °C (°F) 2.7
Mean daily minimum °C (°F) −0.2
Record low °C (°F) −21.3
Average precipitation mm (inches) 56.8
Average precipitation days (≥ 1.0 mm) 10.6 8.4 9.2 9.1 10.3 8.9 7.8 7.9 7.9 9.8 11.1 11.3 112.3
Average relative humidity (%) 88 82 76 71 74 72 68 71 78 85 87 89 78
Mean monthly sunshine hours 60.8 95.1 159.8 193.7 215.5 240.3 256.9 239.7 190.9 118.0 66.5 52.9 1,890
Source 1: Meteo France[12]
Source 2: Infoclimat.fr (relative humidity 1961–1990)[13]


Porte Guillaume (Guillaume Gate), Place Darcy (Darcy Square), in the center of Dijon.

Dijon has a large number of churches, including Notre Dame de Dijon, St. Philibert, St. Michel, and Dijon Cathedral, dedicated to the apocryphal Saint Benignus, the crypt of which is over 1,000 years old. The city has retained varied architectural styles from many of the main periods of the past millennium, including Capetian, Gothic and Renaissance. Many still-inhabited town houses in the city's central district date from the 18th century and earlier. Dijon architecture is distinguished by, among other things, toits bourguignons (Burgundian polychrome roofs) made of glazed terracotta tiles of various colours arranged in geometric patterns.

View of the spire of Dijon Cathedral, showing roofs with polychrome tiles.

Dijon was largely spared the destruction of wars such as the 1870 Franco-Prussian War and the Second World War, despite the city being occupied. Therefore, many of the old buildings such as the half-timbered houses dating from the 12th to the 15th centuries (found mainly in the city's core district) are undamaged, at least by organized violence.

Dijon is home to many museums, including the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Dijon in part of the Ducal Palace (see below). It contains, among other things, ducal kitchens dating back to the mid-15th century, and a substantial collection of primarily European art, from Roman times through the present.

Among the more popular sights is the Ducal Palace, the Palais des Ducs et des États de Bourgogne or "Palace of the Dukes and the States of Burgundy" (47°19′19″N 5°2′29″E / 47.32194°N 5.04139°E / 47.32194; 5.04139), which includes one of only a few remaining examples of Capetian period architecture in the region. Many art interested visitors flock to the Puits de Moïse or Well of Moses, a monumental sculpture by Claus Sluter.

The church of Notre Dame is famous for both its art and architecture. Popular legend has it that one of its stone relief sculptures, an owl (la chouette) is a good-luck charm: visitors to the church touch the owl with their left hands to make a wish. (The current carving was restored after it was damaged by vandalism in the night of 5 and 6 January 2001).

The Grand Théâtre de Dijon, built in 1828 and one of the main performing venues of the Opéra de Dijon, was declared a monument historique of France in 1975. It was designed by the Dijon-born architect Jacques Cellerier (1742–1814) in the Neo-classical style with an interior modelled on Italian opera houses.[14]



Dijon is located approximately 300 km (190 mi) southeast of Paris, about three hours by car along the A38 and A6 motorways. The A31 provides connections to Nancy, Lille and Lyon. The A39 connects Dijon with Bourg-en-Bresse and Geneva, the A36 with Besançon, Mulhouse and Basel.

Water transport

The Canal de Bourgogne passes through the heart of Dijon and creates a navigable route to Paris in the north-west via the river Yonne, a tributary of the river Seine, and to the Saône river 25 km to the south-east. The canal joins the Saône at Saint-Jean-de-Losne which is the barging centre of France and Europe. In addition to the connection to the Atlantic via the Seine it has navigable water connections to the Mediterranean—via the Saône to the Rhône river at Lyon and further south (ultimately west to the Atlantic via the Canal du Midi)—Germany and central Europe—via the Rhône-Rhine canal—plus west to the centre and river Loire via the Canal du Centre. These waterways were largely completed before the 19th century and were the main means of industrial transport until the railways began taking over in the mid-19th century. Today they form a water route for mostly pleasure craft between northern Europe and the south. For example the route through Dijon is popular with those sailing their boats from the United Kingdom to the Mediterranean.

Public transport


Dijon is an important railway junction for lines from Paris to Lyon and Marseille, and the east–west lines to Besançon, Belfort, Nancy, Switzerland, and Italy. The Dijon-Ville station is the main railway station, providing service to Paris-Gare de Lyon by TGV high-speed train (LGV Sud-Est), covering the 300 km (190 mi) in one hour and 40 minutes. For comparison, Lyon is 180 km (110 mi) away and two hours distant by standard train. The city of Nice takes about six hours by TGV and Strasbourg only 1 hour and 56 minutes via the TGV Rhin-Rhône. Lausanne in Switzerland is less than 150 km (93 mi) away or two hours by train. Dijon has a direct overnight sleeper/couchette service to Milan, Verona and Venice by the operator Thello. Numerous regional TER Bourgogne-Franche-Comté trains depart from the same station. There is another railway station east of the city centre, Dijon-Porte-Neuve station, on the line to Is-sur-Tille and Culmont-Chalindrey.


A new tram system opened in September 2012. Line T1 is an 8.5 kilometres (5.3 miles) line with 16 stations running west–east from the Dijon railway station to Quetigny.[15] Line T2 opened in December 2012, an 11.5 km (7.1 miles) north–south line with 21 stations running between Valmy and Chenôve.


Dijon holds its International and Gastronomic Fair every year in autumn. With over 500 exhibitors and 200,000 visitors every year, it is one of the ten most important fairs in France. Dijon is also home, every three years, to the international flower show Florissimo.

Dijon has numerous museums such as the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Dijon, the Musée Archéologique, the Musée de la Vie Bourguignonne, the Musée d'Art Sacré, and the Musée Magnin. It also contains approximately 700 hectares of parks and green space, including the Jardin botanique de l'Arquebuse.

Dijon is home to the prominent contemporary art centre Le Consortium, a fine-arts school (ENSA), as well as a number of art galleries like the Fonds régional d'art contemporain, which holds a permanent collection including pieces by locally established artist Yan Pei-Ming.

Apart from the numerous bars, which sometimes have live bands, some popular music venues in Dijon are : Le Zenith de Dijon, La Vapeur, l'Espace autogéré des Tanneries and l'Atheneum.

A jar of Dijon mustard

Dijon mustard originated in 1856, when Jean Naigeon of Dijon substituted verjuice, the acidic "green" juice of not-quite-ripe grapes, for vinegar in the traditional mustard recipe.[16] In general, mustards from Dijon today contain white wine rather than verjuice. Dijon mustard is not necessarily produced near Dijon, as the term is regarded as genericized under European Union law, so that it cannot be registered for protected designation of origin status.[17] Most Dijon mustard (brands such as Amora or Maille) is produced industrially and over 90% of mustard seed used in local production is imported, mainly from Canada. In 2008, Unilever closed its Amora mustard factory in Dijon. Dijon mustard shops sell exotic or unusually-flavoured mustard (fruit-flavoured, for example), often sold in decorative hand-painted faience (china) pots.

Burgundy is a world-famous wine growing region, and notable vineyards, such as Vosne-Romanée and Gevrey-Chambertin, are within 20 minutes of the city center. The town's university boasts a renowned enology institute. The road from Santenay to Dijon is known as the "route des Grands Crus", where eight of the world's top ten most expensive wines are produced, according to Wine Searcher.[18]

The city is also well known for its crème de cassis, or blackcurrant liqueur, used in the drink known as "Kir", named after former mayor of Dijon canon Félix Kir, a mixture of crème de cassis with white wine, traditionally Bourgogne Aligoté.

Dijon is home to Dijon FCO, a football club with a men's team competing in the Championnat National and a women's team competing in the Division 1 Féminine. Dijon has a its own (Pro A) basketball club, JDA Dijon Basket. The Palais des Sports de Dijon serves as playground for the team and hosted international basketball events such as the FIBA EuroBasket 1999 in the past. Dijon is home to the Dijon Ducs ice hockey team, who play in the Magnus League.[19] To the northwest, the race track of Dijon-Prenois hosts various motor sport events. It hosted the Formula 1 French Grand Prix on five occasions from 1974 to 1984.

Colleges and universities


Historical population
YearPop.±% p.a.
1793 20,760—    
1800 18,888−1.34%
1806 22,026+2.59%
1821 22,397+0.11%
1831 25,352+1.25%
1836 24,817−0.43%
1841 26,184+1.08%
1846 27,543+1.02%
1851 32,253+3.21%
1856 33,493+0.76%
1861 37,074+2.05%
1866 39,193+1.12%
1872 42,573+1.39%
1876 47,939+3.01%
1881 55,453+2.95%
1886 60,855+1.88%
1891 65,428+1.46%
1896 67,736+0.70%
YearPop.±% p.a.
1901 71,326+1.04%
1906 74,113+0.77%
1911 76,847+0.73%
1921 78,578+0.22%
1926 83,815+1.30%
1931 90,869+1.63%
1936 96,257+1.16%
1946 100,664+0.45%
1954 112,844+1.44%
1962 135,694+2.33%
1968 145,357+1.15%
1975 151,705+0.61%
1982 140,942−1.05%
1990 146,703+0.50%
1999 149,867+0.24%
2007 151,543+0.14%
2012 152,071+0.07%
2017 156,920+0.63%
Graphs are unavailable due to technical issues. There is more info on Phabricator and on MediaWiki.org.
Source: EHESS[20] and INSEE (1968–2017)[21]


Twin towns - sister cities

Dijon is twinned with:[23]

See also


  1. ^ Translated in other notable and relevant languages:


  1. ^ "Répertoire national des élus: les maires" (in French). data.gouv.fr, Plateforme ouverte des données publiques françaises. 13 September 2022. Archived from the original on 28 June 2020. Retrieved 24 November 2022.
  2. ^ "Populations légales 2021". The National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies. 28 December 2023.
  3. ^ Wells, John C. (2008). Longman Pronunciation Dictionary (3rd ed.). Longman. ISBN 978-1-4058-8118-0.
  4. ^ Jones, Daniel (2011). Roach, Peter; Setter, Jane; Esling, John (eds.). Cambridge English Pronouncing Dictionary (18th ed.). Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-15255-6.
  5. ^ "Destination Dijon and Burgundy - Palais des Congrès". www.dijon-congrexpo.com. Archived from the original on 28 December 2017. Retrieved 19 June 2017.
  6. ^ "Dukes of Burgundy, the History of Burgundy, France - burgundytoday". www.burgundytoday.com. Archived from the original on 30 April 2012. Retrieved 19 June 2017.
  7. ^ mondial, UNESCO Centre du patrimoine. "Les Climats du vignoble de Bourgogne". UNESCO Centre du patrimoine mondial (in French). Archived from the original on 26 April 2020. Retrieved 13 April 2023.
  8. ^ Freeze, R. Allan (1994). "Henry Darcy and the Fountains of Dijon". Ground Water. 32 (1): 23–30. Bibcode:1994GrWat..32...23F. doi:10.1111/j.1745-6584.1994.tb00606.x. ISSN 0017-467X.
  9. ^ "Bombing of Dijon, France". U.S. Air Force. Archived from the original on 2 February 2014. Retrieved 19 January 2009.
  10. ^ Paris, Nice, Strasbourg, Brest
  11. ^ "Normales climatiques 1981-2010 : Île de Dijon". www.lameteo.org. Archived from the original on 4 October 2022. Retrieved 14 June 2022.
  12. ^ "Dijon–Longvic (35)" (PDF). Fiche Climatologique: Statistiques 1991–2020 et records (in French). Meteo France. Archived (PDF) from the original on 7 July 2022. Retrieved 21 July 2022.
  13. ^ "Normes et records 1961–1990: Dijon–Longvic (21) – altitude 36m" (in French). Infoclimat. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 21 July 2022.
  14. ^ Base Mérimée: Théâtre, Dijon, Ministère français de la Culture. (in French).
  15. ^ "Pioneering PPP energises Dijon tram". Railway Gazette. 21 July 2010. Archived from the original on 24 September 2012. Retrieved 25 June 2012.
  16. ^ Jack E. Staub, Ellen Buchert (18 August 2008). 75 Exceptional Herbs for Your Garden. Gibbs Smith. p. 170. ISBN 9781423608776.
  17. ^ "SCADPlus: Protection of Geographical Indications and Designations of Origin". Europa (web portal). Archived from the original on 10 March 2009. Retrieved 5 May 2009.
  18. ^ "World's Top 50 Most Expensive Wines". Wine-Searcher. Archived from the original on 15 February 2014. Retrieved 5 May 2009.
  19. ^ Dijon Hockey Club. "Duc's Official Website" (in French). Archived from the original on 2 February 2010. Retrieved 1 October 2010.
  20. ^ Des villages de Cassini aux communes d'aujourd'hui: Commune data sheet Dijon, EHESS (in French).
  21. ^ Population en historique depuis 1968 Archived 24 September 2022 at the Wayback Machine, INSEE
  22. ^ "Christian Allard – MSPs : Scottish Parliament". Archived from the original on 1 February 2014. Retrieved 16 May 2013.
  23. ^ "Villes partenaires". dijon.fr (in French). Dijon. Archived from the original on 16 September 2017. Retrieved 12 November 2019.

Further reading