Montélimar: all you need to know about the beautiful city of Montélimar in the Drôme

Montélimar, city of nougat, is located in the Drôme department in the south of France. It is the perfect location for a day of shopping. But there is more to do in Montelimar! You can visit the old castle on top of the hill or taste the legendary nougat. Read everything about Montélimar in this blog.Montelimar, Drome region, France

Montélimar in the Drôme

The not too large city of Montélimar is located just south of Valence in the Drôme. The Rhône, which flows west of the city, forms the dividing line with the much rougher department of the Ardèche. And even though the Ardèche is so close, Montélimar is typical of the Drôme Provençale with its pastel-colored and chic houses, nougat and lavender.

The center of Montélimar is not large and can easily be visited in half a day. A perfect trip if you are staying in a rural area but want a lively and bustling city around you.

Map of Montélimar in the Drôme

‎Drome Region France

Just north of the Drôme lies Burgundy. Read all about southern Burgundy here with cities such as Cluny and Macon!

What to do in Montelimar

Below are six fun things to do in Montelimar or the surrounding area!

1. To do in Montélimar: stroll through the beautiful streets

The old center of Montélimar is beautiful! The old houses have cheerful pastel shades, with small French balconies and beautiful shutters. There are a few nice squares (Place de l’Europe, Place du Marche, Place des Halles) where you can sit on the terrace with a glass of pastis or rosé and watch the people shopping.

You can also have fun shopping in Montélimar. The streets are full of small boutiques and nice hotspots. We found the Vue sur Terres gift shop to have nice things, we had a good time at the Big Apple clothing store and admired all the beautiful children’s toys at 9 Mois & Toi. 

The brand new “market hall” of Montélimar “Les Halles de Montélimar” is also worth a visit. Don’t expect a chaotic market here, but neatly arranged vegetables, a fish jeweler, wine shop and bakery. Perfect for a coffee or to taste some oysters.

2. Sightseeing Montélimar: Visit the old castle (with treasure hunt for children)

Like most medieval towns in France, Montélimar also has a castle on top of the hill. The Chateau des Adhémar (or simply Chateau de Montélimar) literally towers above the center. If you visit the castle from the inside you will learn all about its history, as it was built in the 11th century. There are twenty different games for children to play in the castle and there is a special treasure hunt.

Entrance is €5 for adults. Children under 12 are free.

3. Fun in Montélimar: Relax in the city park and visit the small petting zoo with children

There is a small but beautiful city park in the middle of the center. We walked quite a few laps here to get Floris to sleep. It is a nice place to relax or to let your children run wild in the playground, go on the carousel or walk past the small petting zoo.

Montelimar, France 12

4. Must in Montélimar: Taste the famous nougat

Montélimar is world famous for the delicious, not too sweet nougat that comes from here. Soft and with quite a few almonds in it. So if you are in the city, tasting a piece of nougat is definitely something you should do. There are several nougat shops in the center of which Nougat Le Chaudron d’Or, near the castle of Montélimar, seems to make the best nougat.

The Palais des Bonbons du Nougat is also frequently recommended. This is a museum in the north of Montélimar where you will find nougat, toys and an indoor and outdoor playground. We skipped this spot because it wasn’t really our thing… but if you have small children who want to let them run wild in a playground… then this might not be a bad idea.

5. Hotspot in Montélimar: Visit the market in Montélimar

Every Wednesday morning, Thursday morning and Saturday morning you will find a provincial market in the center of Montélimar. Ideal for buying nougat, lavender products or fruit and vegetables. The market takes place on Place du Marche  and sometimes there are so many market stalls that the streets around the market square are also full.

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6. Fun in the area around Montélimar: Take a trip to Valence, Crest or Saoû

There are many other nice villages and towns in the area around Montélimar. For example, visit the beautiful and larger city of Valence. Or admire the Crest tower and walk through the streets with a bit of a hippie atmosphere. The beautiful village of Saoû, surrounded by high mountains, is also worth a visit, especially when you combine it with a nice hike through Fôret de Saoû.

Not far from Montélimar is one of the most beautiful villages in France: Mirmande! Also a must visit when you are in the area!

Just south of the Drôme is the Vaucluse with the famous Mont Ventoux! Read all about hiking to Mont Ventoux in our blog!

Practical tips Montelimar

You can park for free at this location in Montelimar. From there it is about a five-minute walk to the center, just cross the spur of the Rhône and you are there. Please note that many shops and restaurants are closed on Sundays and Mondays.

Nice restaurants in the center are L’ilot Montélimar in a small courtyard, restaurant La Petite France for a more chic lunch or dinner, or restaurant La Taverne on the market square where we sat down for lunch with Floris. Here you can eat simpler dishes, but perfect for when you are with children (who can play on the square or sit in the high chair).

We ate a citron meringue tart (my absolute favorite) at a small bakery, but recently the chic patisserie shop Yannick Begel has also opened on Place Emile Loubet. Last, La Petite Soupape is also recommended. This cute tearoom is beautiful on the inside and has a nice terrace.

Are you traveling to Provence? Be sure to visit Aix-en-Provence!

Where to sleep in Montelimar

There are more than enough nice hotels and B&Bs in Montelimar and the surrounding area. Here are two options. Click here for an overview of all accommodations in Montelimar.

Transit overnight tip near Montélimar: Do you stop in the area of Montélimar on your way to the south of France? Then we recommend you spend a night at Le Castel in this nice apartment. You can sleep here for 113 euros per night, it is close to the A7 and there is a swimming pool and air conditioning!

L’annexe du domaine de Brisset €€

L'annexe du domainde de brisset

This apartment just outside Montélimar has a swimming pool, private kitchen, garden and 2 bedrooms. Perfect for when you want the space and tranquility of just outside the city, but want to be in the center quickly. From 110 euros per night.

Book now

Le Cheynet €€€

Le Cheynet

This beautiful mansion with swimming pool and air conditioning is located in the center of Montélimar. You have an entire apartment at your disposal with two bedrooms, kitchen and living room. You can sleep here from 185 euros per night.

Book now

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