PROVENCAL TOWNS: Avignon or Aix en Provence?
Great moments in Provence are provided through strolling the streets of the classical Aix-en-Provence or on the Rocher des Doms in Avignon looking at the medieval monuments of the city.
Avignon, Prow on the Rhône river, a trip throughout the Middle Ages: “Climbing” to the Rocher des Doms in Avignon will give you another emotional experience. It dominates the powerful Rhône river with its famous bridge and the bucolic scenery of the Barthelasse island. This “ascent” helps you to understand the choice of this location for the city since this rock is obviously a natural shelter.
On the other side of the river, is the lovely city of Villeneuve-les-Avignon, this symbol of the King of France was facing the county of Provence at the time Provence was independent.
The 14th century walls still surrounding the city and the Palace of the Popes immerse you in the Middle Ages when the Popes made this quiet city of Provence the capital of Christendom. You will be impressed by the immensity and majesty of the monument built by the 7 Popes who sat in Avignon in the 14th century. The huge banquet rooms, the frescoes, the coloured floor tiles will give you an idea of the Pope’s life at that time.
Aix-en-Provence, a trip into the classical period:
Aix-en-Provence, one of the oldest Roman cities of Provence, is among the most attractive: its sumptuous 17th and 18th century architecture, its mansions and fountains singing everywhere, its lively streets and lovely stores, its markets and cafés… these combine to make a very special and unique Provencal athmosphere within Aix.
When the sun is highlighting the golden facades of the mansions of the city it’s a fascinating and unforgettable spectacle.
No stay in Aix-en-Provence is complete without walking in the footsteps of the painter Paul Cezanne, a native of the city who made its surroundings famous especially the impressive Sainte-Victoire mountain range which was one of his favourite subjects.