Avignon & Les Baux de Provence
Home to the Popes during the 14th century, Avignon is an amazing place of architecture and history. The quaintness and panoramas of Les Baux are a nice contrast.
A NOTE ABOUT DRIVING TIMES
About 3 hours on the road — a bit heavy compared to other services from this port.
While the word “Avignon” might make you start humming “Sur le Pont d’Avignon”, it should be noted that Avignon derives most of its fame from the Avignon Papacy, the time between 1309 and 1377 during which seven popes resided in the town. Avignon is bursting with impressive historical sites (the historical centre became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995) and has the distinction of being one of few French cities to have preserved its ancient ramparts. The ramparts, built by the Popes in the 14th Century, are an outstanding example of Medieval fortifications.
We will focus on the Palais des Papes (a 14th century joint work of the best French architects in the International Gothic style), the cathedral, and the Pont d’Avignon. We’ll also walk through cobblestoned Rue des Teinturiers, recalling a time when wool and silk manufacturing fueled the town’s economy, still evidenced by the few water wheels that remain over the Sorgue river.
Les Baux de Provence
Les Baux, perched on a spur of rock, has been deemed “One of the most beautiful villages in France”. There are a great many historical monuments in this small place, and lots of opportunities to buy local handcrafts and olive oil. This part of France is known for terra cotta figurines called “santons” that are traditionally placed in Nativity scenes.
DURATION: 8 hrs
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