Jardin de Ville city park

NileGuide Expert Says:

A nice place to relax in the heart of the old town.


Place de Gordes
38000 Grenoble, France

NileGuide Expert tip:

The benches surrounding the lawns offer great people-watching. Bring a book and relax.


Along with the Paul Mistral Park, the Jardin de Ville park lets the Grenoblois enjoy a little green space in the heart of the city. This park, located right in the historic center, has a library, a playground for small children, and a turn-of-the-century band stand used for concerts.

The park was built in the early 17th century by the Duke of Lesdiguières (the same person responsible for the first Bastille fortifications) after he built his townhouse on the same site. Today the Hôtel de Lesdiguières still borders the park. Over the centuries, it has served as municipal treasury, prefecture, city hall, and museum. It now houses the Maison de l'International and a library.

In the middle of the French-style lawns, a copy statue of Hercules watches over the students and young people who come to lounge, study, and picnic on the grass. The original of this statue, which dates to 1740 is housed in the Grenoble Art Museum after being vandalized in 1989.

The Jardin de Ville has always been a theater for Grenoble life. Near the passageway to Place Grenette, you can still see the wide terrace that belonged to Stendhal's grandfather. It was from here that the young author observed Grenoble's bourgeois and drew inspiration for his novels.

Every July, the Cabaret Frappé music festival also invades the park. This event has become one of the region's major summer attractions, with free and admission-charged concerts, public readings, games, and more.


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