This old papal city is also a place in Provence where sunshine and an easy-going lifestyle blend together into perfection, ensuring you an exceptional weekend. In Avignon, everything from tours, festivals and tasting sessions are on the agenda!
The Palais des Papes, papal fortress at the heart of Avignon
Of all the monuments to visit in Avignon, the Palais des Papes is the one that stands out above all the others. Its majestic walls enclose a rich history and the impressive stone vaulted ceilings are witness to a mysterious past that is waiting to be explored by visitors. The pride of Avignon, this ancient home of the Popes is full of treasures for you to discover!
Saint-Pierre Basilica, the most beautiful church in the city
Dating back to the 14th century, this church is rightly considered by many to be the most beautiful in Avignon. Its Gothic style and carved stone façades, weathered by the passage of time, give it a unique character. Entering the church is like visiting a museum: its art works, preserved since the Middle Ages, are well worth a look.
The Pont d'Avignon, the local celebrity
The Pont Saint-Bénezet is Avignon's most iconic monument. Although today only a part of the bridge is left intact, it was once an obligatory waypoint between the Kingdom of France and the Papal State. Visitors passing over the Pont d'Avignon can take in the view of the Rhone as well as the Saint-Bénezet and Saint-Nicolas chapels, both built directly on the bridge.
Take a stroll through the city
Enjoy a walk in the city centre, starting at the Place de l'Horloge, which is located near the Palais des Papes. The town hall takes centre stage in the ancient Place d'Avignon, which acquired its first public clock in the 15th century. Lose yourself on rue Peyrollerie, where you can see the Rocher des Doms close up, the stone on which the City of Popes was built.
Next, enter the Jardin des Doms and relax in this magnificent garden overlooking the Pont d'Avignon. Enjoy the view and evocative fragrances coming in on the winds of Provence! Now, descend to the headland, cross the Rhone and make a visit to the Île de la Barthelasse, where the people of Avignon enjoy the fresh air and a stroll in the sunshine.
Avignon's speciality, a treat fit for the Pope
In addition to olives and other typical Provençal produce, the most remarkable speciality of Avignon is called 'la papaline'. This sugar-coated ball of chocolate has the appearance of a pink chestnut and is filled with a local liqueur called 'origan du comtat'. Mouth watering!
Avignon festival, an event not to be missed
Since 1947, Avignon festival has been considered one of the most important events in the world of theatre. Every year, more than 30 venues take part in this week-long event. Troupes and comedians showcase their talents and the beauty of their art to the public. The festival takes place every July, book now!
Avignon's museums, a cultural outing
A visit to Avignon would be incomplete without a visit to the Musée du Petit Palais; this building situated next to the Palais des Papes bears its name well. The spiked façade gives it a charming Medieval allure. Inside, the permanent collection features Italian paintings, local sculptures and work from artists of the École d’Avignon.
The Musée Calvet is located within the Hotel Villeneuve-Martignan, which was built by the first consul of Avignon. Today it hosts numerous collections from France and abroad.