Bourges, the capital of Berry, has few secrets for Hélène... Guide-lecturer for City of Art and History, she tells with the energy that we know him, that Jacques Coeur was a sacred rascal and that George Sand was quite a woman for her time! Transmitting history comes naturally to her. We all have a little bit of Bourges in us, Hélène's is a little bigger than the average... She walks you through these pages to share her own piece, a story of...

The presentations

I am Hélène, National Guide-Interpreter (that's the name of the diploma...) or Guide-Speaker (as we say today...). I was born in Bourges and my parents are from Issoudun, in Indre (country of George Sand), where I currently live. Berrichonne and proud of it!
Capture d’écran 2023-04-28 à 09.35.47

Who are you ?
Originally, I wanted to be an English teacher, so I studied for that, but after 4 years of study, I realized that I preferred to practice English rather than teach it… And as I loved history, heritage, languages… I went to school as a National Guide Interpreter in Paris (a big thank you to my parents, without whom I could not have realized this dream).

Since 2011, I have been a guide-lecturer for Bourges, the Saint Roch Museum in Issoudun, but not only. Sometimes I do tourist accompaniments for a travel agency based in Puy-de-Dôme (Tyrol, Paris, Puy du Fou, Fontainebleau, Châteaux de la Loire…).
I started my career in Tours and in the Châteaux de la Loire, for that matter.

What if you were...

… a monument in Bourges?
The cathedral: what a masterpiece! What an architectural feat! I feel good. It is a calm place, full of colors with its XNUMXth century stained glass windows. century. It is a peaceful place where you can relax, reflect, meditate, let yourself be carried away by the atmosphere and the colors of the stained glass windows, pray...
In the morning, when I arrive, I sometimes send a photo of the cathedral to my friends, writing to them, “Here, I arrived safely at the office! Good day ! »

… a street in Bourges?
I will not choose a street but rather a garden. I would say the Jardin de l'Archevêché which I cross in the morning when I arrive to go to the Tourist Office. This is where I have my lunch, where I read while waiting for a group, where I watch the children run around and play, where I observe the tourists marveling at the cathedral and trying to find the best angle to take a photo , where I admire the work of the gardeners who take care of each path, each flower, and whom I cross again in the evening to leave...


Galette aux pommes de terre

… a berruyer event?
Bourges Christmas Village… I like its atmosphere, its scents of mulled wine, the merry-go-round in front of the Tourist Office, Place Gordaine and its illuminations…

… to eat or drink “berruyer” or “berrichon”?
The potato pancake! I eat it almost every week! As an aperitif with a glass of Reuilly, Quincy or Menetou-Salon! Hummmmm!

… a Berruyer character?
Berruyer no, Berrichon yes! She is not Berruyère… but George Sand!!! A sacred woman for her time! She is not from Bourges, but she came there all the same!


Friends who come from afar, where to take them in Bourges?

  • First at the cathedral, UNESCO anyway! It's unavoidable! How can you resist the beauty of its facade and its stained glass windows! Then Place Gordaine and its picturesque district, to show them the beautiful half-timbered houses from the XNUMXth century century.
  • Then I'll take them for a walk in the Palais Jacques Cœur, a memory of this incredibly intelligent and avant-garde treasurer for the XNUMXth century. The architecture and design of his "big house" leaves no one indifferent.
  • And if we have time, a walk in the marshes, especially if it's spring or summer, the flowers, the colors, the scents, an exotic, calm place, while so close to the city... Classic visit , but who will please them for sure!
  • Nights of Light if it's in summer. Bourges "by night", it's still beautiful!

Your secret corner in Bourges?

jardin de l'Archevêché

On a bench, in peace, behind a tree (I won't tell you which one) in the garden of the Archdiocese, quiet...
My moment of rest between two visits with a book, a magazine, crossword clues or visit reviews!

Your good addresses?

Cake Thé ©Ad2t
  • Le Cake Thé, Aude is adorable, she cooks wonderfully well, especially the lemon meringue pie, the best in the world I think! And the tea room, in this vaulted room, is so “cosy” thanks to its decor!
  • The Marronniers bakery… Their potato pancake is amazing, their flan a delight, their galette des rois, hummmm… their bread… everything, in fact! But for my lunch break, if I have a gourmet craving, I often go to the Marchi bakery, located behind the cathedral, it's so convenient, and they have delicious pastries and pastries and I like to chat with the owner. .
  • Librairix! What a success, this shop! And Denis and his colleague are so nice. I really like comics and I must admit that reading Grand Meaulnes or the History of Bourges in this format is really great… Thanks to Bernard Capo who has already given me a few autographs during the BulleBerry festival!

3 souvenirs that you would bring back from Bourges?
A Berrichon camembert from Daniel Mercier, a delight!
A bottle of Menetou-Salon of course…
A bottle of Monin syrup without hesitation.
It's only things that can be eaten or drunk… but as it doesn't last long, you have to come back to Bourges to buy some more!

Your little pleasure in Bourges?
Surprise the tourists! Especially by showing them the daredevil passage “Mirebeau staircase”, and also, I like to remind visitors that “our” cathedral was used for the filming of the film “Notre Dame Brûle” by Jean-Jacques Annaud, what pride!

What do you like guiding in Bourges?
The cathedral…Of course! For its history and the centuries it has gone through and all the people who have visited it, its architecture, its stained glass windows, its grandeur, its majesty... You feel very small in front of such a monument! Thank you to all these workers who have worked to offer us so much beauty, and thank you to those who do everything to maintain it today, and who allow us, us, tour guides, to be able to take so many visitors who leave. dazzled!

Your favorite Bourges story...

It's difficult...because the history of Bourges is a set of stories put one after the other to reach the present day...

The story of Jacques Cœur's incredible social and professional rise is nonetheless extraordinary. This Berruyer still managed to work for the king, to get rich and was able to afford to build a house of a wealth and a size that many envied him! Showing all the details of the facade (hearts, shells, monkey, motto, gargoyles, etc.) is always a delight and seeing the amazed gaze of visitors facing this residence while listening to the story of its owner is always a source of pleasure. That's what makes me love my job so much! The guides are history smugglers in a way…
We pass on the history of Bourges to visitors by making them dream about this beautiful heritage, we are "ambassadors"!

Visitors always leave delighted with their stay and that is the best story of Bourges, knowing that they will in turn become ambassadors and that they will tell their loved ones that Bourges is a city that you ABSOLUTELY need to visit !