Avignon, France

By:Madeline Hiebert

Where it All Began

The earliest settlement ever recorded in Avignon was over 5,000 years ago! The history lies in the time of the 14th century where it was selected to be the residence of the pope Clement the V. The city was chosen for a variety of reasons including the Rhone River which was an excellent transportation route, political considerations involving the popes, and location all play a part in the reason for the settlement of Avignon.

The Rhone River

The Rhone River is one of the two most important rivers in Europe. It flows from Lake Geneva in Switzerland west to Lyon and then south through Avignon to the Mediterranean Sea. It is the largest river to flow into the Mediterranean Sea and it also has enormous economic, military ,and social significance. Many bridges that cross the Rhone River is the world-famous Pont d'Avignon Bridge.

Many visitors to France like to take River Cruises along the Rhone River, some of which depart from Avignon.

Avignon is know as the French Vatican.

Interesting Facts

Secret gardens dot Avignon's landscape and they consist of mazes, flower gardens, and secret pathways that lead to beautifully colored vegetation and flowers of all types.

It is said that Avignon seems to look just like all of Van Gogh's paintings.

Flea and Food Markets in Avignon are quite extravagant and it would be wise to visit one on your trip here!

Avignon is the home of the Palais des Papes! (The palace of the popes)

The Cuisine and Culture

In Avignon there culture and cuisine go hand in hand. Dishes dating back to Avignon's medieval time period can still be found in the many restaurants in the ancient city. Also, music, dance, and theater embody the soul and heart of Avignon's culture. Operas and theater are plentiful in the city and some date to being constructed back in 1847, like the Opera d' Avignon. Old cafes and romantic restaurants on every corner showcase the grace and artistic qualities of Avignon's people and past, or how they conquered their past.

Most of the architecture in Avignon revolves around the Gothic style and is prominent in all of the palaces.

Travel Tips

#1 There are bakeries and eateries at nearly every corner, so bring a few extra Euros with, you would be smart if you are in the mood for a pastry!

#2 Be wary of anyone around the Palais des Papes area who tries to get you to sign a petition. They also attempt to lie to you just when you leave the Palais des Papes and claim to be working for the Palais des Papes or other authorities in Avignon. The petition and anything else stated is false information. If you sign their petition, they will demand large quantities of money from you.

Must Sees

The Palais des Papes

Pont d' Avignon

Pont du Gard

Place d l'Horloge

City Walls

Notre Dame des Dom

Avignon, France: Youthful City in Medieval Walls