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Avignon Travel Tips - Make the Most of Your Time in Provence

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Avignon is an important city in Provence - a crossroads of west and east that welcomes diversity in culture, food, and art. It's no wonder people travel across the globe to be around its Gothic architecture, storied broken bridge, and river views. The city's Mediterranean climate, though comparatively mild, has distinct seasons with hot summers and cool winters.

Best time to travel

 

In July, theatre lovers flock to Avignon's performing arts festival. If you like lively squares, impromptu shows, and bustling streets, this is the perfect time to go. During November and December, Avignon, like many cities in France, has a popular Christmas market. If slow-paced, quiet vacations are more your style, try to visit during off-season months like May or September, when crowds and prices have dwindled.

Not to miss

 

Palais des Papes, the ancient walls, and Pont d'Avignon are prime examples of Avignon's preserved Gothic architecture, making them sightseeing essentials. Beyond that, Rocher des Doms presents superb landscape and river views, and a quiet café surrounded by elaborate gardens. You'll have excellent shopping opportunities along main and pedestrian-only streets. If you travel across 1 leg of the river to the island, you'll discover nature and a tranquil escape from the city.

 

Getting around

 

Avignon is easy to navigate by bike, which you can rent from one of several Vélopop racks throughout the city. If you plan to wander beyond the walls, you can take a shuttle boat across the Rhône, and a bus from Grand Avignon to neighbouring communities and cities.

 

Cuisine

 

While Avignon has dining options for every budget and taste, a visit here offers the perfect opportunity to try one of the 3 Michelin-starred restaurants in the city. With exceptional cuisine and service, these first-rate restaurants offer dishes that use an array of ingredients ranging from pigeon to asparagus. Smaller bistros serve classic French dishes and regional specialties in laid-back surrounds.

 

Customs and etiquette

 

Tips aren't expected at restaurants in France unless it's written on the bill or the service was exceptional - and even then, 10% is sufficient. You can haggle at a flea market, or at a farmer's market, but haggling isn't done in department or retail stores. Dress in Avignon is pretty casual, although locals rarely wear sweats or baseball caps in public.

 

Fast facts

 

  • Population: 90000
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  • Spoken languages: French
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  • Electrical: 230 volts, 50 Hz, plug type C, E
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  • Phone calling code: +33 4
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  • Emergency number: Emergency number: 112; Police: 17; Fire: 18