Just 2 hours and 40 minutes from Paris and 5h30 from Brussels on the TGV, only 45 minutes by car from Marseilles Provence airport and its regular flights all over the world , Avignon, home to outstanding architectural heritage and located in the very heart of Provence, is well worth discovering.
The Palace of the Popes, the largest Gothic palace in Europe was the residence of the sovereign pontiffs during the 14th century. The palace lies in the historical centre of the city, not far from the famous Pont d’Avignon, sung the world over in the beloved children’s song, another prestigious witness to Avignon’s past.
Avignon still has its ramparts which circle the entire city. Within the protective walls, the old winding streets and dense architectural fabric beckon the visitor to wander and explore.
Avignon’s museums offer a wide array of collections. Explore prehistory at the Musée Lapidaire, discover paintings from the Middle Ages at the Petit Palais museum, Fine Arts at the Musée Calvet, the Impressionnists at Angladon, decorative arts at Musée Vouland and contemporary art at the Collection Lambert !
Avignon is also famous for its theatre festival, today the scene for contemporary creations in the performing arts. In addition to it the accompanying “off” festival shows plays by over 900 companies, turning the city into one big stage. All year long, a thriving cultural scene abounds in Avignon, with opera, many permanent theatres, associations and clubs proposing music, theatre, dance and other events.
Avignon is an important centre for Provencal cuisine. Award-winning chefs prepare traditional and innovative menus in charming restaurants throughout the city. Avignon is also the capital of the Côtes-du-Rhône wines – enjoy tasting them at the shady sidewalk cafés throughout town.
Architecture, culture and gastronomy – visiting Avignon means discovering the lifestyle of Provence.
Tours & Activities
Top things to do
Visit Unesco Heritage
The Palace of the Popes , residence in the 14th Century is the most important gothic palace in Europe. It offers 25 different rooms as the Courtyard of Honor, Benedict 12th Cloister, the Grand Tinel where the Pope and his guests attended great banquets on feast days, the Grand chapel, Pope’s private apartment with invaluable frescoes… The old bridge – le Pont d’Avignon – has been made famous the world over by the beloved song.
Enjoy the summer festival or other major events
“Festival d’Avignon” is one of the oldest and most famous theatre festivals in the World presenting contemporary European creations. The fringe festival with its over 900 different theatre companies, turns the city of Avignon into a huge stage in July. Every season has its major events.
Eat & drink local
Avignon is an important centre for Provencale cuisine. Award-winning chefs prepare traditional and innovative menus in charming restaurants throughout the city. Les Halles local marketplace offers a range of regional products and free cooking demonstrations on Saturdays. Avignon is also the capital of the Côtes-du-Rhône wines – enjoy tasting them at the shady sidewalk cafés throughout town.
Ask for Avignon Passion and the Pass card
It is given free of charge at the Tourism Office and in tourist and cultural sites (monuments, museums). The Pass allows you to discover the heritage in the city of Avignon at special prices. The first visit is full rate, the rate drops for all the following visits: from 10% to 50% off. Use it at all the tourist sites in Avignon and Villeneuve lez Avignon as well as for excursions.
Walk in the parks
Visit the Rocher des Doms garden next to the palace and the gardens overlook the Rhone and afford magnificent views of the entire area. Take the free shuttle boat from the foot of Avignon’s bridge to the Barthelasse island one of the largest river island in Europe. The banks of the Rhone have been developed into a walking path with its fabulous views over the city of Avignon and the Palace of the Popes. There you can cycle, walk, go to the swimming pool, skate board park…