Avignon City Breaks
Famous for its Papal palace and for its bridge, the beautiful city of Avignon is one of the most picturesque destinations in the south of France. The beauty of its buildings and the region's wonderful weather combine to make this a photographer's (and holidaymaker's) dream.
Located on the River Rhone (which marks the border between the Laguedoc and Provence regions), beautiful Avignon is surrounded by completely intact stone walls, built by the last of nine popes who set up a rival Catholic church in Avignon after fleeing the corruption of Rome in the 14th century.
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Popular attractions on Avignon city breaks
Pop into the Palace of Popes
This UNESCO World Heritage attraction is certainly impressive, particularly from the outside, and is the world's largest Gothic palace. Built for Pope Clement V after he abandoned Rome in 1309, the immense size of the Palais des Papes shows the incredible wealth held by the popes. The fortifications of the building (with walls over 3 metres thick) show just how important protection was to the Popes of the time.
Walk the walls
Built in the 14th century, Avignon's walls completely encircle the city. The walls make for an excellent walk, having been wonderfully restored (minus the original moats). During the walk you can visit a number of museums built into the walls.
See that bridge
The famous bridge, immortalised by the song "Sur la pont d'Avignon", was originally completed in 1185 to link Avignon with another small town (which today is Villeneuve-les-Avignon). The bridge is best known as the 'Pont d'Avignon', but is officially the 'Pont Saint-Bénezet'. It was originally 900 metres in length, but suffered frequent damage and numerous collapses due to flooding of the Rhone. Today it is a ruin, only stretching halfway across the river.