Montier-en-Der and the surrounding region are close to Der Lake and this lovely, protected environment holds a wealth of heritage sites. Its name derives from the Latin ‘monasterium’ and the Gaulish ‘dervo’, meaning oak. Monasterium in dervo is literally the ‘monastery in the oak forest’ and it was founded by Benedictine monks in 672.
The abbey church of St. Peter and St. Paul was consecrated in 998 and the Romanesque nave built at the end of that century. The Gothic chancel was added in the 13TH. It’s fabulous collection of stained glass windows were installed in the 19TH century, providing the finishing touches to one of the most spectacular buildings in the entire Champagne Ardenne region. It is now the starting point of a tourist circuit that includes architecturally unique half-timbered churches and magnificent 16TH century stained glass windows.
Napoleon Bonaparte established the Haras national, or National Stud Farm in this historically important monastery after it was secularised in 1806. The stallion stud farm was installed within the ancient abbey grounds, although the present buildings date from the 19TH century. It is now a site for tourist events.
The parvis, a garden courtyard in front of the abbey church in the town centre, the National Stud main courtyard, the Linet garden and the privately owned Japiot garden to the town park, a showcase of statues and cast-iron fountains representing the 19TH century art work of Antoine Durenne at the Sommevoire foundry in Haute-Marne… Montier-en-Der abounds with green areas studded with stunning floral displays and splendidly imposing hundred-year old trees, to the delight of local residents and visitors.
Noël Lepoix has his brewery workshop at Der artisanal brewery. Take a tour and discover the brewer’s art…and a beer tasting session of brown and light ales, pale ales, white and organic beers!
Our year is a busy one: a March Jazz Festival, the Der Marathon in June and an equestrian show in summer, horse-racing from June to August, the International Animal and Nature Photographic Festival in November and concerts throughout the year.
For a perfect stay? Just check out the great stores in the Pays de Der region!