Avignon: An Artistic Vibe with Papal History

Posted: Tuesday, 22nd October 2019

For 70 years during the early 14th century, Avignon was the centre of the Roman Catholic world. This bustling, ancient city in Provence-Alpes-Cote-d’Azur is now vivaciously rich with history and youth with a vibrant art and music scene. In fact, it is now well-known for its annual arts festival.

Avignon has a way with people in that it is such an alluring destination, you’ll most likely never want to leave. Rural Hotels Provence’s travel experts suggest setting aside ample time to thoroughly explore the fortified narrow streets and all that Avignon has to offer.

UNESCO World Heritage Sites

The famous Pont d’Avignon was originally built around 1180 and eventually abandoned in the 17th century. The bridge was rebuilt with 22 amazing stone arches and once connected Avignon with the picturesque village, Villeneuve-Les-Avignon. It now only extends over half of the Rhone River and showcases four of the 22 stone arches.

The Palace of the Popes is the largest gothic palace in the world. Seven popes resided here from 1309 to 1377 until the French Revolution. The palace can be thoroughly explored, and many of the gargoyles guarding the walls make great photographic models. After extensive walking, take a break in Place du Palais, the large square in front of the palace where you can enjoy a variety of street entertainers.

Festival d’Avignon

Avignon’s festival of dance, music and theatre has grown in international popularity since its inception in 1947 by actor/director Jean Vilar. Visitors have enjoyed and anticipated the lively events so much so, that they arrange holidays specifically around the festival dates. The staff at Rural Hotels Provence will happily advise your accommodation in conjunction with the Festival d’Avignon.

Shopping and Museums

Avignon is well known for its pedestrian streets offering a variety of shops, restaurants and cafes. You will also find the daily markets along the streets and in some of the old, picturesque squares. The municipal museums are not only very popular, but they’re also free. They include:

  • Calvet Museum
  • Lapidaire Museum
  • Petit Palais Museum
  • Requien Museum, and
  • Palais du Roure

The thriving historic city of Avignon has so much to offer visitors, as do our meticulously selected hotels in the area. Here are a few, including ones near the medieval village Villeneuve-les-Avignon:


If you are ready to book accommodation or wanting to find out more about a holiday in and around Avignon, contact our friendly experts at Rural Hotels Provence.