Fontainebleau is renowned for the large and scenic forest of Fontainebleau, a favourite weekend getaway for Parisians, as well as for the historical château de Fontainebleau, which once belonged to the kings of France. It is also the home of INSEAD, one of the world's most elite business schools; of the École supérieure d'ingénieurs en informatique et génie des télécommunications (ESIGETEL), one of France’s Grandes écoles; and of a branch of the École nationale supérieure des mines de Paris (the Paris School of Mines), also one of the elite Grandes écoles.

Le Bilboquet rock in Fontainebleau forest © Atout France/Fabrice Milochau

Protected by France's Office National des Forêts, the forest of Fontainebleau encompasses the town and numerous nearby villages, and is recognised as a French national park. It is managed in order that its wild plants and trees, such as the rare Service Tree of Fontainebleau, and its populations of birds, mammals, and butterflies, can be conserved. It is a former royal hunting park often visited by walkers and horse riders. The forest is also well regarded for bouldering and is particularly popular among climbers, as the biggest developed area of that kind in the world.

Horn blowers ready to sound the start of hunting with hounds
© Atout France/Fabrice Milochau

The Royal Château de Fontainebleau is a large palace where the kings of France took their ease, and where the French royal court, from 1528 onwards, developed the concepts that became known as the Renaissance.

Artist in Fontainebleau forest. North-west of Fontainebleau is Barbizon, a village famous for the many impressionist painters who spent their lives there.
© Atout France/Fabrice Milochau


4, Rue Royale, 77300 Fontainebleau
Tel. : 01 60 74 99 99

Fontainebleau lies 55.5 km (34½ mi) south-southeast of Paris, and has the largest land area in the Île-de-France region; it is the only one to cover a larger area than Paris itself.

Recent Articles

  1. French Food and Drink - No BS Guide for lovers of Food, Wine, Liqueurs

    Aug 28, 19 03:18 AM

    Our guide to French food and drink for those who love traditional French food along with our no BS guide to understanding French wine and liqueurs

    Read More

  2. Things To Do In Carcassonne The Ultimate Tourist Guide

    Aug 24, 19 06:26 PM

    The ultimate tourist guide to things to do in Carcassonne when you visit this wonderful town in Aude France. Discover the places to go and see in Carcassone.

    Read More

  3. Lyon Old Town Guide to Vieux Lyon

    Aug 18, 19 07:48 AM

    Your complete guide to Lyon old town otherwise known as the Vieux Lyon. Don't miss this amazing part of the city if you're visiting Lyon in France.

    Read More

  4. 18 French Villages You Must Visit Most Beautiful Villages in France

    Aug 17, 19 06:31 AM

    Our guide to the 18 most beautiful French villages you simply must visit. Loads of info, photos and facts in our ultimate villages in France tourist guide

    Read More

  5. What a Pissoir - The True Story of France's Unique Urinals

    Aug 13, 19 03:47 PM

    Is there anything more French than a pissoir? Sadly on the decline nevertheless the pissor is an endring image of the country. This is their story

    Read More