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Avignon holidays

France's Papal city

Although successive tribes settled in and took control of Avignon, the town was generally seen as insignificant until the early 14th century. At this time, the city became home to the first of seven successive popes, based here to avoid factional fighting in Rome. In a bid to rival Rome's Papacy, Avignon's architects designed many of the city's magnificent surviving features, including the grand city fortifications and the marvellous Palace of the Popes - one of the most important Medieval Gothic buildings in Europe. Throughout the entire era, Avignon developed into a thriving centre of culture; the celebrated Avignon School of painting derived from Italian artists sent for by the popes, and Avignon's University was established in the 1330s.

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There are 3 holidays in this category
Showing 1 to 3 of 3 holidays
Avignon, the Rhône & Provence 2015

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Inspiration for artists including Van Gogh, this region of France oozes history, charm and atmosphere. Staying in the delightful city of Avignon, we explore some of the fascinating highlights of Roman Provence, including the magnificent Pont du Gard, enjoy a lunch cruise along the Rhône and a tasting of Châteauneuf-du-Pape wines.

Premium Rhone Cruise 2015

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Cruise in style along the River Rhône on MS Amadeus Symphony. When you are not discovering this scenic valley on visits to historic cities and charming towns, you can relax on board and make full use of the superb facilities, enjoy the weather on the spacious sun deck and indulge yourself with fine dining.

The Captivating Rhone 2015

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Let the gentle currents of the Rhône transport you through Burgundy and Provence aboard our fantastic river cruise ship. Discover the region's verdant vineyards and absorb the atmosphere of its historic towns, soaring cathedrals and half-timbered houses as we sail from Lyon, taking in the UNESCO-protected centre of Avignon during the cruise.

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More about Avignon

Sur le pont d'Avignon
After the Papacy was restored to Rome, Avignon lost some of its power, but remained an important seat for the Catholic Church. Incredibly, the city was held by the Papacy until 1791 - more than 370 years after the last pope resided there. Avignon then became part of France, and soon became one of its most popular tourist attractions. Along with the beautiful palace and fantastically preserved houses, Avignon is also known for the Pont St Bénezet, its famous broken bridge. All but four of its 22 arches were decisively washed away in a particularly devastating flood in 1668 - today, the surviving arches have become an iconic symbol of the city.

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