Castles’ route around Avignon
From the City of the Popes to the other bank of the Rhone, which previously accommodated Avignon Bridge, pretty buildings from the past open their doors to visitors. Sometimes wonderful gardens are found behind the high walls, like a jealously kept symbol of a fine combination of traditional raw materials and the fragility of the living…gilité du vivant…
The Palais des Papes and Saint-André fort
The Avignon sector also has its set of remarkable buildings and castles, starting with the Palais-des-Papes listed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Just opposite Avignon at Villeneuve lez Avignon, on the other side of the Rhone, Saint-André fort keeps watch. It’s a place that I really like, particularly for its panoramic view of Villeneuve lez Avignon, the Rhone Valley and Mont Ventoux. Tours at night are organised there during the summer, and this year I’ll go to see the “inhabited fort’ exhibition that looks back over an unknown time in the fortress’ history: when it served as an annexe to the Hôtel des Invalides in Paris. And while you’re there, I recommend – still within the fort – the Abbaye St André estate, its superb garden and the beautiful view from its terraces.
Fall in love…
- A booklet-game is available for children to visit the fort (€2 from the fort ticket desk) for a fun way to discover it and make nice memories!
- Tours are included in the Vaucluse Provence Pass.
Châteauneuf-du-Pape, the first wine classed as an AOC in the world, a real jewel in French wine heritage.
The appellation estates extend from Avignon to Orange, and vines comb the hillsides as far as the banks of the Rhone.
It’s a lovely area ennobled by a few vestiges of the castle at the top of the hill.
Brantes castle in Sorgues
Stop off at Brantes castle in Sorgues, the exterior beauty of which is often extolled.
Sorgues castle was built in 1700, and belongs to a private owner who opens his garden by appointment, which has been classed as a Remarkable Garden, and listed on the historic monuments list.
Edged with large cypress trees, it has taken Tuscan inspiration for particular well-done topiary art with box trees and laurustinus, along with magnolias, and three mirror-pools the Sorgue flows into. The place is simply delightful for us to enjoy.
- Think to look at Brantes Garden which organises a full programme for the “RDV aux Jardins” on 4, 5 and 6 June 2022.