18.03.2022 Views

Spring 2022

Discover Paris in the spring, Caen in Normandy and its marvellous markets plus Yvoire, a picturesque village on the edge of Lake Geneva in Haute-Savoie. Explore Saint-Omer, a historic city in the far north that's full of secrets and treasures, and Evian, where Frankenstein's monster stayed! Head with us to Metz in Lorraine to find out about its incredible past, La Couvertoirade, one of the prettiest villages in France, and the UNESCO heritage of Avignon. Guides, gorgeous photos, what's new in France, the best tours and delicious recipes from the legendary Le Nôtre bakery in Paris - and more.

Discover Paris in the spring, Caen in Normandy and its marvellous markets plus Yvoire, a picturesque village on the edge of Lake Geneva in Haute-Savoie. Explore Saint-Omer, a historic city in the far north that's full of secrets and treasures, and Evian, where Frankenstein's monster stayed! Head with us to Metz in Lorraine to find out about its incredible past, La Couvertoirade, one of the prettiest villages in France, and the UNESCO heritage of Avignon. Guides, gorgeous photos, what's new in France, the best tours and delicious recipes from the legendary Le Nôtre bakery in Paris - and more.

SHOW MORE
SHOW LESS
  • No tags were found...

You also want an ePaper? Increase the reach of your titles

YUMPU automatically turns print PDFs into web optimized ePapers that Google loves.

© Jill Converyr

Saint-Bénézet bridge – the

Pont d’Avignon

The building of the bridge of Avignon was

begun in 1175 after a 10 year-old shepherd

from the Ardèche named Bénézet (which

means ‘Little Benoit’) claimed to have been

told by God to build a bridge along the

waterfront in Avignon. Legend has it that, after

walking to Avignon, accompanied by an angel

disguised as a pilgrim, he was challenged by

the Bishop’s provost to carry an impossibly

large block of stone to the water’s edge. It

was so large, it was said that thirty strong men

couldn’t move it. The tale goes that aided

by angels bathed in golden light, he hoisted

the stone onto his shoulder and laid it as the

foundation stone for the Bridge. Overcome

by this miraculous feat, benefactors supplied

sufficient funds. It took ten years to complete

the bridge. Bénézet’s feat was declared a

miracle, though he died without seeing it

completed, he died in 1184. Pilgrims flocked

to see the bridge whose fame spread far and

wide, and the shepherd became the patron

saint of bridge builders.

Originally almost a kilometre long, the bridge

had 22 arches. It was built at a point of the

river where the force of water was so strong,

even Roman engineers were deterred from

building there. Today, only four arches remain,

the bridge having been poor maintained,

reconstructed several times and finally swept

away by floods, it collapsed in the 17th century

and it’s said that King Louis XIV was one of the

last people to walk across it.

On the bridge the little stone Chapel of Saint-

Bénézet where the saint was originally buried,

was rebuilt in 1414 after the “War of the

Catalonians”. The Saint’s remains are now in

the nearby 14th century Gothic church of Saint-

Didier, built during the time of the Popes in Avignon.

The ramparts of Avignon

The old city of Avignon is encircled by

ramparts. They are 4.3km long and were

The Good Life France | 53

Hooray! Your file is uploaded and ready to be published.

Saved successfully!

Ooh no, something went wrong!