Cergy-Pontoise, a multicultural place

Cergy-Pontoise, a modern city with a view

Located 45 minutes from Paris by train, on the banks of the Oise river and at the gateway to the Vexin country, Cergy-Pontoise conurbation is full of surprises and different atmospheres. It blends the urbanism of the old new town of Cergy with the art and history of the royal city of Pontoise, not to mention the charm of the small towns around the area.

Photo d'une vue du ciel de l'Axe Majeur de la Tour du Belvédère, Parc des Impressionnistes, les 12 colonnes et la base de loisirs
Lionel Pagès

"L’Axe Majeur", the heart of Cergy-Pontoise

Initially a small farming village 50 years ago, it is now a multicultural center where life is good, with some rich cultural offers. It has undergone a number of developments and one of the most emblematic is Dani Karavan's monumental "Axe Majeur", built in the 1980s.
One of the new town's urban planners, Michel Jaouën, was a key figure to bring the sculptor's work to life.

This symbolic work is an ideal place for a walk with friends or family. Sheltered from the hustle and bustle of the city, you can even make a stop for a picnic.

If you go all the way to the end, you'll enjoy a beautiful view of the city and Paris visible in the distance.

"L'Axe Majeur" was awarded by the Remarkable Contemporary Architecture label in 2022.

The art work offers an insight into architecture and urban planning, but above all, it has become a meeting place for sportsmen/women and film-makers who come here to shoot their video clips, commercials or films.

A few steps away, you can see Europe's largest clock (at Cergy Saint Christophe station) indicating the way to the "Axe Majeur".

In Cergy, let's discover exciting activities !

For sports enthusiasts, Cergy's Île de loisirs offer a generous range of activities: a water park, tree climbing, surfing, beach activities, barbecues with friends or even rafting.


Photo d'un homme surfant sur la vague à surf de l'île de loisirs de Cergy Pontoise.
Cyril Badet
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Île de loisirs de Cergy-Pontoise

Pontoise, City of Art...

Pontoise, a city of art and history, is popular with culture lovers, and played a central role in the world of Impressionism.

Since the Middle Ages, it has been home to several kings of France and wealthy merchants, as well as to many artists, notably the Impressionist painters.

Two itineraries are on offer: one through the narrow streets of Pontoise, the other along the banks of the Oise. Both will be filled with anecdotes about the life of Camille Pissarro. Reproductions of Pissarro's paintings will be presented in the places where they were painted, to put you in the painter's shoes and give you access to his vision.

For those who prefer a self-guided tour, a walking map of all these emblematic sites is available on request from the Cergy-Pontoise Tourist Office.

As for river cruises, an Impressionist cruise leaves from Pontoise. It retraces the unique landscapes immortalized by the great 19th-century painters.

...and history

Today, the rests of this incredible past make up the charm of Pontoise. You can visit the city's underground passages, the Pissarro and Tavet-Delacour museums and their surprising collections, or take a cruise on the Oise River under fine weather.

You can also wander through the old streets of the old town, which hold so many secrets...

Not far away, in Saint-Ouen l'Aumône, is the Abbey of Maubuisson. This ancient building is now a center for contemporary art, and each year it invites a renowned artist to exhibit works specially designed for this historic site.

Just a few miles away from the Parc Naturel Régional du Vexin Français, Cergy-Pontoise is made up of numerous small towns, each with its own little-known but equally rich heritage.

Now it's your turn to discover them through the forests, along the banks of the Oise and in small, hidden monuments, thanks to the family walks and hikes offered by the Tourist Office.