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Just north of popular Épernay, Hautvillers at first may seem like just another village in the countryside. But for true fans of Champagne, it has become a pilgrim's destination. That's because it is the birthplace of Champagne! The town's Saint-Pierre Abbey is where Dom Pérignon first made the bubbly elixir, and today he is buried in the abbey, now owned by Moët & Chandon.

But there's more to Hautvillers than simply this historical fact. A stroll through the streets reveals the whimsical iron signs that grace every public or commercial building and what lies within. And there are wine tastings at Au 36, charming dining options and lots of activities nearby. Hautvillers' motto is “Entre Vignes et Forêts,” meaning between the vineyards and the forest–the perfect place to discover the magic of this verdant region.