The magnificent, ancient town of Avignon, France, is simply beautiful, and lies in the department of Vaucluse in the south of the country. Most famous for the Palais des Papes, the 14th Century home of Popes, Avignon has an amazing ability to endear visitors to the point that many return and by a villa in Avignon in which to live full time. Taking a short break to Avignon, although great fun, will not allow you to see anywhere near all the fantastic attractions or sample all the entertainment options the town offers.
There are so many things too see and investigate in Avignon that you would need many weeks staying in Avignon accommodation to see everything satisfactorily, but a week’s holiday gives you the luxury of choosing the monuments and attractions that interest you the most. UNESCO have nominated the town as a World Heritage Site, and wandering through the ancient, fortified, covered streets you can easily see why. Throughout the town, a range of museums tell parts of Avignon’s history, which dates back to the 5th century.
Some of the finest places to visit from an Avignon villa include the Palais des Papes, the Place de l’Horloge and the much photographed Pont d’Avignon. Despite the town’s ancient appearance, it has a very youthful atmosphere, always awash with music, art and activity of various kinds, especially during the Avignon Festival (Festival d’Avignon). The festival first ran in 1947 to celebrate dance, music and theatre, with events springing up all across the town, in the streets and at famous historical locations throughout Avignon. If you are lucky enough to take Avignon accommodation in July, you cannot fail to miss it! Through out the year, festivals of all varieties are held in the town, including film festivals, Baroque art, theatre and the famous rampart races in February.
There are a number of excellent walks you can take from an Avignon villa, mainly heading out towards the Alpilles, a small mountain range whose foothills are covered in olive and almond plantations giving them a much needed splash of colour during spring and summer. The golf course of Golf Grand Avignon is located just outside the town, and is open for use to anyone staying in Avignon accommodation or even just passing through.
Due to the town’s location, Avignon wine tours are hugely popular with visitors, and there are many fantastic vineyards from which to take a wine tour. Throughout the town, restaurants and cafes offer glasses of the best local produce, meaning you can take your own Avignon wine tour and see the finest monuments of the town at the same time!
Arles is another beautiful old town of Vaucluse, whose outer walls hide many architectural treasures from those who pass by the town on their way to the beaches of the Cote d’Azur – Provence. However, those who do choose to stop by will be delighted by what they find. It is one of the best places to start a walking or cycling tour of Vaucluse.
The stunning town of Avignon changes with the seasons, but is always truly enchanting. In summer, average temperatures reach around 26˚C, with very little rain from May until October, and winters are short and mild, averaging about 10˚C in the coldest months.
Avignon has its own airport, the Avignon-Caumont Airport (AVN), located just 8km outside the town centre. Currently, the only direct flights from the UK to Avignon are provided by Flybe, leaving from Southampton Airport (SOU). Alternatively, you can get a train directly from Paris.