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Aix en Provence - Town Hall

 

Avignon - Popes' palace

 

Avignon


MARSEILLE - AIX EN PROVENCE - AVIGNON

France's premier port and oldest major city, Marseille is in a surprisingly attractive setting, centred on the Vieux Port (the old harbour). People have leaved here for 26 centuries, its mixture of cultures being so varied that Alexander Dumas called it "the meeting place of the entire world"

This tour gives you the chance to discover several faces of the second-largest city in France :

- View on the "Vieux Port". All streets lead to this place, where visitors tend to congregate. In this creek where the Phocaeans landed in 600 BC, now we can see thousands of yachts and pleasure boats
- View on the huge and somptuous XIXth century cathedral
- Spendid panorama from the highest point of the city, to take time to admire the unique site on which the city was built
- Visit of the basilica Notre Dame de la Garde, overlooking the city, presided over by a golden Madonna on a 150 ft bell tower. Its inside decoration made of mosaics and unusual votive offerings will impress you

Continue towards Aix en Provence

The old capital of Provence has kept a great deal of the character imparted to it in the XVIIth and XVIIIth. The sober elegance of its mansions, the graceful charm of its squares, the majesty of its avenues and loveliness and its fountains are impressive.

You will love to stroll through the heart of the town, in the pedestrian old streets to discover the façades of the baroque ochre coloured private mansions. These dwellings were built for the nobility, each with a concept and style corresponding to the residents' social importance.
The city also boasts a wide variety of fountains. Aix is the "city of water, city of art".
Among other buildings of interest : the cathedral, the townhall, the Corn Exchange
Why not having a coffee at the terrace of one of the numerous cafes.
Why not tasting a calisson cake with it, freshly made with almond pasta before continuing your visit in the narrow streets, full of tiny boutiques.

Lunch

Continue to Avignon, a UNESCO World Heritage Site

Avignon, a strategic site in the Rhone valley, owes its origins to the Doms rock. With the arrival of the popes in the 14th Century, the city became a second Rome. It was enriched by art in the 17th and 18th Centuries, and it remained papal property up to the French revolution. Its medieval walls cover nearly 3 miles and are punctuated by 39 towers and seven gates ! Within the walls thrives a culturally rich city.

The major site of the city is the huge pope's palace, the biggest gothic palace in the world. Just beeing at the foot of the impressive building will let you an unforgettable souvenir. It gives an idea of the grand life under the seven French popes who built a miniature Vatican during their rule here. You can visit 25 rooms of it, including the ceremonial rooms, chapels, cloister, private papal apartments with priceless frescoes, and others. (entrance not included)

The second point of interest is the St Bénezet bridge. This legendary bridge is a significant symbol of the history of Avignon, famous throughout the world due to the beloved children's song. The bridge was built in the late 1100's. Though it was often rebuilt after damage inflicted by the raging flood waters of the Rhone. (entrance not included)

This tour requires a minimum of 9 hours

Suggested schedule
8:00am Pick up at your hotel or ship in Marseille
Sightseeing tour of the second largest city of France to discover the mains monuments: Notre Dame de la Garde, le Vélodrome stadium, la Major Cathedral, le Vieux Port, la Corniche Kennedy …
10:00 Drive to Aix
10:45 Guided tour of the charming city of Aix, renowned for its romantic atmosphere: baroque private mansions, fountains, shaded squares...
Lunch
01:00pm Drive to Avignon
02:15 Guided tour of Avignon, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This strategic site of the Rhone Valley is worldwide renowned for its huge pope’s palace, the major site of the city (possible inside visit of the Popes palace: about 11 euros per person)
04:00 Drive back
05:00 Drop off 

The schedule can be changed depending on the arrival/departure times of your ship or according to your wish if you stay in a hotel.

www.transferts-service.com
www.marseille-private-tours.com
www.toulon-private-tours.com
www.provence-private-tours.com