Thursday, January 3, 2013
A Trip to Avignon - Wednesday January 2, 2013
At one end was a toll booth which collected levies on those who used the bridge. Revenues were used to support the hospital which was lodged in this tower.
After visiting the bridge (but not using it), we went to the Palace of the Popes. Rick Steves suggested that we get an audio guide to help understand "the barren papal palace …[and]…the complete lack of furnishings."
The palace is huge. Like all palaces it has been extended and enlarged many times. It was built quickly in the early 1300s after the French pope felt more secure in France tan in Italy where the pope was expected to be Italian.
The Church bought the town of Avignon and moved the entire papacy (500 plus personnel) to Avignon. There continued to fortify the Palace of the Pope until the papacy was returned to Italy in 1403.
The pictures you see here will give you a flavor of the palace but only a flavor. We thought Rick Steves did not do the Pope's Palace justice with his less than enthusiastic description.
After our somewhat brief visit to Avignon we returned to Montpellier, had dinner, and retired for the evening.