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Pau Hotels

Pau City Info

Pau Hotels

From humble beginnings as a crossing on the Gave de Pau for flocks en route to and from the mountains, Pau became the capital of the ancient viscountcy of Béarn in 1464, and of the French part of the kingdom of Navarre in 1512. Pau has been witness to a rather turbulent past due mainly to its hardy Protestant ruler Jeanne d'Albret who provoked the Wars of Religion with Catholic Spain.  Later, Jeanne gave birth to King Henry IV who had to switch faiths in order to take up the throne.   Today, Pau is the capital of the Bearn region and the Pyrenees-Atlantiques department. 


It is an elegant town with Belle Epoque buildings, well-preserved parks and a lively student population.  It has always been a favourite with affluent foreigners who still favour it as a starting point for the Parc National des Pyrenees and its spectacular scenery.  The town is well-equipped for this purpose with numerous camping, climbing and outdoor pursuits shops and facilities. The centre of the town is perched on top of a hill with the river Pau at its base.  Here you'll find the boulevard des Pyrenees with its superb views of the snow-capped peaks of Vignemale and the Pic du Midi d'Ossau.

This medieval city built in the 12th century is full of history and culture. Why not visit the many museums Pau has to offer, one being Château de Pau National Museum. Here you will see the grand staircase and fine series of superimposed windows, one example of the architectural quality. The museum also houses one of the finest European collections of Flanders and Gobelins tapestries from the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries. For those interested in painting and sculpture Pau has twelve art galleries and exhibition rooms.

Pau is also spoilt by nature and is one of France 's most flower-decked towns, with its ornamental gardens and magnificent parks. Throughout the year here you have opera, theatre, dance, music concerts, exhibitions, all kinds of sports activities, and of course during 14 July - 20 August Pau Carnival.

In this beautiful town you can also shop 'til you drop, with over a thousand shops and department stores. You will find everything you want here from designer clothes, jewellery, leather to furniture, and interior design. Market day is Saturday at Place de la Republique where all the local producers come to sell their wares.. Not to be missed!


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