Provence is a great alternative to a classics trip to Italy or Greece, with some of the most impressive Roman remains in all of Europe. It is home to one of the best preserved Roman aqueducts, the Pont du Gard and probably the best preserved Roman temple, La Maison Carée in Nîmes.
Visit the towns of Arles and Nîmes and explore these ancient places to dive deep into Greek and Roman history. The Romans introduced amphitheatres, baths, temples and aqueducts – you can see examples of all of these still in great condition. In fact, some amphitheatres are still used today for a whole host of different events, including French bullfighting!
This is a fascinating region and would be perfect for a classics trip, with so much to see and do!
Our Suggested Itinerary
This itinerary is based on travelling by air, but let us know if you would prefer to travel by coach.
Flight to Marseille or Montpelier.
Spend the afternoon in Orange, a city of art and history, it has exceptional historical heritage. Visit two monumental Roman structures: the Arc de Triomphe and the Théatre Antique. The Arc stands majestically over the city, and the Antique Theatre is the only Roman theatre in Europe to have conserved its stage wall.
Visit the ancient town of Arles, a city on the Rhône River. It was once a provincial capital of ancient Rome and you can see many remains from this era.
Explore the 1st-century Roman Theatre, built during the reign of Emperor Augustus. Then head to the Baths of Constantine, dating back to the 4th century. These public baths were the centre of the Roman social scene, as well as a place for exercise and hygiene.
Afterwards, pay a visit to the Roman Amphitheatre, probably the most prominent Roman remain in Arles. It was inspired by the Colosseum in Rome and has hosted gladiator battles, chariot races and bullfighting over the years!
Visit the attractive town of Nîmes which has the finest collection of Roman remains in France.
Head to the Pont du Gard, the tallest Roman aqueduct, and one of the best preserved. This phenomenal piece of engineering is one of the Romans' greatest achievements.
Then head to the city centre to visit a number of impressive Roman ruins. First, visit La Maison Carée, the best preserved Roman temple anywhere. Then visit the Temple of Diana and Tour Magne, a Roman tower what was once part of the city’s outer fortifications. Finally, head to the Arena, still used today for events such as concerts and French bull-fighting.
Visit Vaison-la-Romaine, located in hilly countryside which is perfumed by vines and olive groves. The town is famous for its fabulous Roman ruins and medieval town and cathedral.
Flight back to UK.
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