Porentruy is a cosy and beautiful Swiss town based in Jura Canton and there are quite a few reasons to visit Porentruy. As you may guess from the name, it is in a french part of Switzerland and the spoken language over there is french.
I have visited Porentruy couple of times and would like to share my recommendations on what to do and experience in this Swiss town.
How to get to Porentruy
Porentruy is located not very far from the highway so it is very easily reachable by car or train.
If you would like to visit Porentruy by train, please check all the latest time schedules and ticket prices right here: Swiss trains. The trip from Zürich should take you a bit longer than 2 hours, from Basel a little over one hour.
If you come to Porentruy by car, you can easily park in a Coop parking lot, you can find it here: Saint-Germain 3, 2900 Porrentruy. You can pay there by card and parking lot is right next to the old town.
Walking around Porentruy
Some details straight away about the walk around Porentruy:
Time needed: up to 2 hours.
Distance: 3-5 kilometers.
Places which you must visit: Botanical garden, Jurassica Museum, Porentruy castle.
Best time to visit: Summer. Both times I was there in late autumn and botanical garden is kind of out of season at that time. It is very beautiful in summer.
Once I left my car in the parking lot, I got straight below the church Église Saint Pierre and walked up to it. The church was closed, but as I saw on the internet, it has some very nice stained glass. You can have a look at some pictures right here: Église Saint Pierre.
Afterwards, one of the most popular places in Porentruy is its botanical garden. It is one of the oldest such gardens in Switzerland and has a wide variety of roses and cacti, as well a lot of plants from Jura canton. There you can find thematic greenhouses as well. Unfortunately I have visited this garden both times in late Autumn so the beauty of it was not in full range, but still a very calm and nice place to visit.
As you can see in the image above, all the flowers are cut for the winter, but you can see all the information about each plant in those little stands. I always admire how grass is green in Switzerland even in winter time.
There’s as well a place to rest and read a book if you wish in this garden. The garden is on the higher part of the city, so you can get a pretty good view of the city.
As well not far from the botanical garden you can visit the Jurassica Museum. I think the name of it gives a good indication what about is it. You can find there quite a big variety of fossil fuels and other nature related expositions. You can find more information about this museum right here: Jurassica Museum in Porentruy.
After visiting Botanical garden it is time to explore the old town a bit.
Actually I myself just wandered around the old town, it is very french, full of little shops, especially the central square.
I have taken pictures of some other nice buildings and places in Porentruy.
In the picture above is maybe the most beautiful building for me personally in Porentruy. It is a museum and you can visit it, have a look at all information right here: Musee De L’Hotel-Dieu.
What catches they eye very fast in Porentruy is the big castle on the highest point in Porentruy. The castle in the image below is seen in the end of the street, above it.
The images of this castle are amazing on internet, but being there and not having a drone, it is very hard to get all castle in one nice frame 🙂 Please have a look at some images of the castle right here: Chateau de Porentruy.
Once you get to the castle, you can enjoy the most open views of the city. I was there on a very cloudy day, so my images look a bit grim.
Porentruy doesn’t have big mountains around it, just hills, but you still can see them in the picture.
As well, through Porentruy runs a river and in some places you get a feeling of Amsterdam or even Venice, it is always fun when city has some small tiny cute bridges over the river in the city old town.
I wonder what does this pig mean, I am sure there is some fun history details included.
After the castle, I just came back to the city center to have my lunch and continue my trip further on in Jura canton.
Porentruy is a perfect weekend destination in Switzerland if you are looking for more hidden treasures in this beautiful Alps country.
My perfect day in Porentruy would be like this:
I would wander around the old town and check as many little streets, yards, old buildings as I can. Later on, I would definitely visit the botanical garden (especially if you come in summer).
I would finish my walking tour by the beautiful and huge Porentruy castle on the mountain. Later on I would have a dinner or delicious bakery in Boulangerie Roelli which is in the city center, in the main square.
If you have more time in Porentruy, there is some nice hiking paths leading from the castle to France. France is just 10 kilometers away from Porentruy, so you can even set up yourself for such adventure:) But basically Porentruy is surrounded by forests, so there are many nice hiking opportunities.
If you are looking for more beautiful places around this area, you must visit the charming Saint Ursanne, it is a very medieval and stunning little village in Jura canton, very close to Porentruy. You can find all the information about Saint Ursanne right here: Charming Saint Ursanne.
If you have any questions regarding Porentruy, please let me know, I will do my best to help you.
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