Paris may be the first stop in the north of the country, but the beauty and grace of Avignon makes it the number one destination in the south. Avignon incorporates everything that makes the ideal holiday destination – good weather, fantastic food, numerous attractions for all ages and interests, topped off with an amazing vibrant nightlife.
Due to the rich tapestry of history and culture woven in Avignon, the city has gained an impressive and well earned reputation for being a place of style, grace and sophistication. Each century, something unique and beautiful has been added, with the end result being a city of world-class heritage and a truly exceptional atmosphere.
When you visit Avignon, you are visiting a city that has many things to see and do. Start by exploring the very walls of the city. The city walls date between 1359 and 1370 and have been a part of the city’s heritage. These massive stone ramparts were erected in order to help protect Avignon from their enemies but even in their heyday they were not the state-of-the-art defences, but they have become part of the atmosphere and heritage of the city. Head inside the very walls and explore the museums to understand more about the role Avignon played in local and national history.
The city prides itself on its love of art and culture, so visiting at least one of the several art galleries and museums is a must. Head first to the Musee Angladon where you can allow your senses to burst as you gaze on some truly outstanding artworks by Cezanne, van Gough, Degas and Manet. For those interested in archaeology and history, there are some interesting collections of artefacts from various historical periods.
The Musee Calvet is considered one of the best galleries in France, and even the building itself, an 18th century palace, is truly exceptional. Inside, allow you eyes to feast upon the Galerie des Sculptures, a collection of marble sculptures dating back to the 19th century. On the second floor, you will discover an array of fantastic paintings from Dutch and Italian artists, including Vernet and Manet.
When you have explored the beauty and emotion of artworks, the next stop is to visit the Palais des Papes. This massive Gothic palace is the largest in the world, and its striking beauty is appreciated by all who come to admire her. The palace has been the location of many celebrations, including Clement IV’s coronation in 1342, but it was originally built as a fortress to protect its people. There are guided tours around the palace and as you explore each room you are left with a sense of refinement and historical significance.
When you have finished exploring Avignon, you can explore what she has to offer you by way of culinary delights. Restaurants and cafes are found on every street; some hiding in little corners, others found in authentic palaces. However, wherever you discover your eatery, the food will certainly take you on a journey to heaven.
Visiting Avignon means you are visiting a city that takes great pride in her history, her culture and her style. Just by walking along her streets, you understand how magnificent she really is. Once you discover her beauty, you will never want to leave.