Situated on the left bank of the Rhône river, the French city of Avignon was the papal capital in the 14th century. This UNESCO-listed site radiates elegance and antiquity from its eclectic architecture, medieval streets and squares dotted with quaint stores, local eateries and street artists.
Avignon is known for the Palais des Papes erected by Pope Clement V. Said to be the largest Gothic palace, this building was the seat of papal power for years and boasts spacious halls and large chapels. While touring the city, you’ll most likely come across Pont St-Bénézet, one of the most iconic sites of Avignon. Although half of this bridge was washed away in the 17th century, Pont St-Bénézet still stands as a fascinating structure offering fine views of the river and the city. Art and history enthusiasts may stop at Musée du Petit Palais, a museum housing Renaissance and pre-Renaissance Italian religious paintings by Botticelli and Giovanni di Paolo, among other artists.
When travelling to Avignon from another European city, you can fly directly into the Avignon Airport. For travellers flying from other continents, it's better to stop at a larger international airport first and before getting on a connecting flight to Avignon. You can also fly to Lyon's international airport and take a direct train to Avignon.