The Best Travel Guide to Nantes
Provided by: Château des ducs de Bretagne
Section in Nantes
Do & See
Do you know of any other destination that – in one single kilometre – can bring together; a walk along the banks of the river Loire on a 12m high Grand Eléphant, a XVth century castle, a history museum that uses contemporary scenography to conjure the past, present and future and on top of that, an artistic trail designed by some of today’s greatest artists? Come to Nantes to discover the “cité des ducs” and a single part of its rich architectural and cultural heritage. Nantes has 1,001 attributes; none more important than the one making you want to come on another journey in Nantes! Just follow the green line !

Musée d'arts

Renovated and extended in June 2017, the Fine Arts Museum has been renamed the Musée d’arts . Steered by the Stanton-Williams Agency (Royal National Theatre, Tower of London, Belgrade Theatre, etc…), it houses a total of 17,000 m2, several exhibition halls and an auditorium. A key change is a 30% increase in exhibition space for one of the only ‘generalist’ museums in France. It is the only one outside of Paris able to present such an extensive and broad panorama of art stretching from the thirteenth to the twenty-first century. It has 10,000 works of art (paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints and contemporary installations), and several hundred masterpieces painted by De la Tour, Ingres, Courbet, Chagall, Kandinsky, Picasso…
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Memorial to the abolition of slavery

Nantes was the capital of the slave trade in France: it organised 43% of the French slave trade shipments in the XVIII century. The City wants to assume its past and give shape to the memory via a powerful political gesture. The Memorial to the Abolition of Slavery in Nantes is the biggest in Europe. Located on the Quai de la Fosse, a symbolic place in the city that has seen many slave ships to Africa, the Memorial has been open to the public since March 2012. Following an international competition, the city of Nantes has entrusted the design of the Memorial to Krzysztof Wodiczko, a Polish artist and Julian Bonder, an Argentinian architect.
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Isle of Nantes

Formerly occupied by the shipyards (closed in 1987) and by industries, this area is in complete rehabilitation and finds some harmony between the conservation of industrial heritage and the development of a new modern space. The Isle of Nantes is a perpetually changing area with contemporary architecture. On both sides of this territory perched on the Loire river are standing resolutely original and innovative buildings built by the greatest international architects: Jean Nouvel, Alexandre Chemetoff, Christian de Portzamparc, Marcel Smets…)
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