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Home to an array of fascinating historical attractions, Avignon is a beautiful city in the southern reaches of France. Priceless sites are scattered across the cityscape, including the world-famous walled-section in the heart of town. Landmarks like the Pont d’Avignon, the Papal Palace and the fascinating Place Pie market welcome tourists anytime of the year. Due to the large distances between these highlights, tourists should take advantage of car hire in Avignon.
Who to Book With
Avis, National and Europcar are some of the largest companies offering car rental in Avignon. However, some of local firms also offer rental vehicles at very competitive prices also. All rental suppliers in the city provide online booking opportunities for tourists, so compare prices and book before you arrive.
Best time to go
The best time to visit Avignon is during the spring months of March, April and May, when the weather is mild and precipitation is relatively low, making sightseeing much more comfortable. In addition, was most tourists flock to Avignon during the hot summer period, tourists will find plenty of discounts on transport and hotels in the spring.
Need to Know Essentials
Before renting a car in Avignon, you will need to provide several documents:
- A credit card used in the booking or deposit-confirmation sheet
- A driving license from country of origin or an International Drivers Permit
- Secondary photo identification
The walled section of Avignon is best visited on foot. However, the streets and roads around the outside of this district are generally in good condition, so driving across the city is an efficient way to get around. However, tourists need to be aware of incorrect signposts, aggressive local drivers and limited parking options.
As Avignon is not large, most attractions located within the inner-city can be toured on foot. However, getting around the farther reaches of the city can still be done via public transportation, which includes taxis, buses and a unique mode of transport called baladines. Even though Avignon has a large train station, it is only used for regional and national travel as the city doesn’t have a local train network. Cars are useful if tourists wish to explore the outer-districts of Avignon and the surrounding region.
Visitors will be able to find taxis in the city. There are numerous companies offering this service in Avignon, including Avignon Provence Taxi. Even though the city is not overly large, it can get quite hilly, so taking taxis will make it easier to get from point A to point B. Most drivers speak some English and often Spanish.
Even though there are limited bus services within the walled area of Avignon, the outer districts are well-connected. Buses are not only suitable for inner-city travel, however, as the Grand Avignon region is also linked to the central areas by bus. The Transports en Commun de la Region d’Avignon (TCRA) is responsible for public bus transport in the city and the surrounding region.
Similar to taxis, Baladines are seven-seater vans that offer just one route around Avignon. They are inexpensive and can be hailed just like taxis. Between July and August, they operate everyday of the week. However, outside these months, Baladine services are offered only Monday to Saturday.
Even though the beauty of Avignon is enough to satisfy any tourists’ holidaying desires, a trip to the city is not complete without discovering the vast richness of Provence. Roman ruins are the main sites found across the region of Provence, but wineries and outdoor entertainment opportunities also lure visitors out of Avignon. Car rental provides plenty of daytrip possibilities for Avignon tourists.
Arles - A sleepy town less than 20 miles away from Avignon. However, tourists will do anything but sleep in this beautiful little township, as Arles is home to some of Europe’s most breathtaking Roman sites, including the Cryptoporticos, Pont Van Gogh and a massive Roman Amphitheatre. Tourists should also get out of their car and explore the medieval centre for a few hours.
Pont du Gard - A world-famous landmark located in the town of Remoulins, just to the west of Avignon. The aqueduct is one of the world’s most impressive Roman-built structures, so daytrips to this destination are absolutely recommended. Excellent hiking opportunities are also found around the city, so outdoor lovers will be pleased too.
Nimes - Located less than 30 miles to the southwest of Avignon, Nimes boasts an inspiring cityscape of historical marvels. Sites like the Roman Amphitheatre (Les Arenes), Greek temples, and the Maison Carre make the trip to Nimes extremely worth-while. Nimes is also home to plenty of great museums.