Picturesque Avignon sits along the Rhône River in Provence, a scenic and diverse region set in southeastern France. The city's most historic accomplishment occurred in the 14th century when Pope Clement V fled Rome and settled in Provence. As a result, the city of Avignon is home to the largest Gothic palace ever built—the astonishing Palais des Papes. This exquisite palace encompasses some 160,000 square feet (15,000 square meters). Besides this impressive feat, the city has even more to offer, including 14th-century monuments, interesting museums, cobbled streets lined with shops and markets selling Provençal goods, a large island, and a famous stone bridge.
Leave the city behind and explore Avignon's surroundings in beautiful Provence. You can discover lavender fields, endless vineyards, nearby villages and towns, and even retrace the footsteps of the Obamas when they visited Avignon and Provence! The region as a whole is perfect for family, friends, solo, or partner trips at any time of the year, as it benefits from the maritime climate of the Mediterranean.
Explore the City
First things first, spend some time in beautiful Avignon! This 14th-century gem is filled with interesting sites and offers a charming view of typical Provençal life.
Avignon & Pope's Palace Walking Tour
Explore the medieval city of Avignon, starting with a climb to the top of its fortifications for one of the best views of the historic center. Next, visit the 14th-century Palais des Papes (Pope's Palace), the largest gothic-style palace ever built. Other highlights include the Place de l'Horloge for its painted windows, the Town Hall with its clock tower, and the theater. End the tour with a glass of Côtes du Rhône wine at a locals' hangout. Read More
Bike Tour of Avignon's île de la Barthelasse
Leave Avignon's busy city center behind and discover an authentic side of Provence by biking on the city's island. Set in the middle of the Rhône River, the scenic île de la Barthelasse features over 1,500 acres of green space filled with bike paths, farmland, animal life, and city views. Pedal past idyllic farms growing lavender, fruit trees, vegetables, and more. Stop to savor some of the island's products and learn about its agricultural heritage. Read More
Enjoy the Wine
Provence is known for its wine production, especially along the Rhône River. You'll have plenty of opportunities to try regional varietals in Avignon, but it doesn't require much time to visit the nearby vineyards.
Chateauneuf du Pape & Gigondas Wine Tour
Discover the unique winemaking regions of Chateauneuf du Pape & Gigondas, known for pebbly topsoil that produces complex and top-rated red wines. Walk through the vineyards with an expert, learning about this important area and its characteristic soil, then taste a few varietals, Grenache and Syrah in particular. Next, head to Gigondas, which sits in the southern Rhône Valley beneath the Dentelles de Montmirail mountain range. Enjoy more wine tasting and gorgeous scenery. Read More
Hilltop Villages & Wine in the Luberon
Enjoy the delicious wine of the famed Luberon Region, known for its shallow soils, formed by limestone and argillaceous sandstone, which produce high-quality wines. Start with two wine tastings in the Côtes de Provence Sainte-Victoire vineyards, some of the most natural in France. In particular, you'll enjoy full-bodied reds and elegant rosés. Then continue into the Luberon to visit some of its idyllic villages, including Lourmarin, Bonnieux, Roussillon, and Gordes. Read More
Besides wine, Avignon and Provence offer other delicacies, including the famed "purple gold" and ancient sites.
Savor Provence's "purple gold" by touring the renowned fields of Sault or Roussillon, depending on the time of year. Start by strolling through a typical Provençal market, filled with unique lavender products, fresh produce, and regional delicacies. Then explore some of the lavender fields, stopping at a few sites along the way, including the hilltop town of Gordes, the Senanque Abbey surrounded by the purple flower, and the area's Lavender Museum. Read More
Treasures of Provence
Discover the treasures of beautiful Provence, starting with a tour of the city of Arles. You'll visit its famous ancient sites, including the Roman amphitheater, plus some of the scenes depicted in Van Gogh's famous works. Stop by The Yellow House, visit The Night Cafe, and admire The Hospital Garden. Next, head to two picturesque villages: Les Baux de Provence and Saint Rémy de Provence. End the day sipping wines from the unique Alpilles mountain region, known for complex and organic wines. Read More
How to Craft the Perfect Avignon Itinerary
Because Avignon is nestled in scenic Provence, it's especially easy to build a fun, historic, and diverse itinerary. Start with a few days in the city to take advantage of that Provençal charm, then combine Avignon with neighboring hot spots. Natural choices include the nearby French Riviera, French Alps, or the foodie city of Lyon. Of course, how much time to spend in Provence depends on how much you want to see, but give yourself at least one week if you plan to combine Avignon with some of these other cities and regions.
But, you don't have to stick to just the neighbors! Avignon and Provence pair nicely with cities like Paris or regions like Loire Valley. If you'd like to create one of these longer cross-country itineraries, plan for two weeks to make the most out of your time.
Past kimkim travelers have enjoyed the following itineraries that include experiences in Avignon: