The town is proud to present its renowned creativity which has survived the centuries from the days of the Dukes of Bourbon down to the present day.
The most recent example was the creation of the Illustration Centre devoted to book illustrations dating from the last 50 years. Located alongside the Allier, you can visit the CNCS, the Centre National du Costume de Scène (National Theatre Costume Centre) with its collection of 9,000 theatre or opera costumes, which organises a number of extremely varied annual exhibitions.
As the préfecture of the Allier area, Moulins is rightly proud of the vibrant yet peaceful lifestyle of a town which has always been synonymous with history and know-how.
Alongside the river Allier, basking in the gentle colours of the town's bricks and pink sandstone, take the time to enjoy the special atmosphere to be found here. The artistic features added by the Dukes of Bourbon, the theatre costumes and private buildings and courtyards all arouse a sense of cultural curiosity, discovery and relaxation.
As a Town of Art and History, Moulins, features a number of impressive architectural heritage sites, of which the Cathedral and the famous Master of Moulins Triptych are prime examples.
Created in 990, Moulins enjoyed massive growth when the town headed the Duchy of Bourbonnais from 1327 to 1527. Today, traces of the patronage of the Dukes of Bourbon can be seen all around Moulins, and the town’s guides will help you to discover this impressive heritage. Enjoy a stroll through the cobbled streets of the historical old town combining timber framed houses, middle class homes and fine town houses. Discover the Chapel of the Visitation whose outstanding painted ceilings have recently been restored. Admire the treasures and masterpieces of the Visitation which are exhibited at the Hôtel Demoret… As you can see, Moulins is packed with interesting features waiting to be discovered by those who take the time to seek them out.
If you enjoy contemporary, dynamic art, head on over to the Illustration Centre :
Located in the heart of the old town in a marvellous private building dating from the 18th century, the Illustration Centre, an initiative unique of its kind in France, is devoted to illustrations from children's books dating from the last 50 years, with something new every six months thanks to the temporary exhibitions hosted there.
Another popular heritage site in Moulins is the Centre national du costume de scène et de la scénographie (National Theatre Costume and Stage Design Centre):With its soft lighting, outstanding character and the wealth of beautiful costumes exhibited here, everything has been done to ensure that your visit to the National Theatre Costume Centre in Moulins provides an opportunity for you to discover these arts. With a collection of 9,000 opera, theatre and ballet costumes, this centre is a shrine to costume making know-how and the creation of theatrical settings.