France & Italy With Trafalgar Tours: Day 2 (Part 3)

After our exquisite lunch experience, our Trafalgar Tours Travel Director, Jonathan, suggested that the best way to digest the food that we had just consumed would be to wander around and the best place to do it would be in Avignon.  We began our Provencal journey in the village center at the Palais des Papes, or Pope’s Palace.  It is one of the largest and most historical medieval Gothic buildings throughout all of Europe.  Countless Popes over the centuries have called this magnificent place their home.

Provence, France

Depending on where you choose to marvel at this architectural wonder, it will change colors right in front of your eyes due to the sun’s reflection upon it.  I wish that I would have had time to further explore this UNESCO World Heritage Site, however the stores in the “City of the Popes” were sweetly calling out my name.

Provence, France
Provence, France
Provence, France

One of the things that sets Trafalgar Tours apart from its competitors is that even though it is a guided vacation and the Travel Directors are passionate about sharing their insider secrets, it still highly encourages its clients to make discoveries on their own during the trip.  Thus, we all separated for a couple of hours.  Before I got lost in some retail therapy, however, I wanted to see more of what the quaint cobble-stoned streets had to offer.

Provence, France
Provence, France
Provence, France
Provence, France

The main square in Avignon, which is lined with cafes, boutiques, galleries, and of course a carousel, is Place de l`Horloge.   This is the throbbing heart of the city where business deals are done over glasses of champagne and young lovers steal kisses underneath the moonlight.

Provence, France

As I made my way back to the meeting spot, I caught sight of a couple of my colleagues refueling themselves at a bar and I had no choice but to join them.  Once we were properly satiated, we then headed to dinner, which was again nothing short of amazing.  “Life changing food” was quickly becoming the theme for the trip and I made peace with the fact that I would return to the United States five pounds heavier.

 

The final stop of the day was to our hotel, the Grand Hotel Mercure le Roi Rene, located right in the middle of Aix-en-Provence.  Sleep came easily and so did dreams of the adventures we would be having the following day!

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Andi Perullo de Ledesma

A Chinese Medicine Doctor/Travel Writer and Photographer who is exploring life and the world one beautiful adventure at a time.

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Comments

France & Italy With Trafalgar Tours: Day 2 (Part 3) — 51 Comments

  1. I have only read about Avignon and that it was home to many a Pope before the Vatican…but I have yet to see all the wonders you captured above in your beautiful photography. And I love the fact that you were able to show the two tones of the Palais des Papes…incredible!!

    • Thank you so much!!! I could have sat there for hours photographing the palace at different angles, alas I needed to do some shopping. ;-)

      I definitely want to return though and explore the inside!

  2. Avignon has that benefit of being one of the few places in Europe that did not destroy thier medieval heritage. I always wondered what Barcelona would be like if they hadnt torn down its massive ramparts. Old drawings of the palace at the time of the popes show a massive, massive building. I’ll bet it was quite a site back then – cause it still is now. Great photos by the way!

    • Despite Barcelona destroying a lot of it’s past, it’s still one of my most favorite cities in the world! :) Avignon is just gorgeous as well and it’s incredible how much history it has preserved. Thanks for your kind words re: my photos!!!

  3. Oh Andi, these photos are absolutely stunning! I’ve been so sick the last while and it is a pure gift to come here and be whisked away to such a gorgeous part of the world. :-) xo

  4. I think your tour guide certainly hit on to something with that recommendation. Usually I have to deal with the pains of digestion in my little Spanish zulo. Could do with a stroll round this stunning French site!

    Lovely photos.

    • Wow, thank you so so so much!!! Honestly, I’ve never taken a class in my life and I don’t know much about photography at all. Having said that I’ve always been a huge fan of photography and have looked at millions of photos over the years, so I think that has helped train my eyes. I have been flirting with the idea of taking some classes in 2012. I definitely want to learn and buy Photoshop.

  5. My favorite photo? The lavender crate! So gorgeous, looks like an amazing trip! Found your blog via Terra and so excited about it, seems like an amazing site and looks like you’re doing what you love the most, I can sense your passion through your writing! Cheers!

    • I’m so happy that you stopped by!!! I always love new readers. Terra is the best right? Thanks a million for your kind words — they mean so much to me! I wish that I would have seen more lavender, but sadly that is all I stumbled across.

  6. The Papal Palace is overwhelmingly large, so I’m not surprised to hear it’s one of the biggest of its kind. I went there on a school trip when I was 11, and for several days before we arrived I thought it was the Purple Palace…imagine my surprise when it was not, in fact, violet-colored.

    • Oh wow to go there when you were 11, incredible! I think the coolest thing I saw at 11 was the White House haha. I can just picture 11 year old Emily with cute little pigtails staring up at the palace wondering why it’s not purple!!!

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