Arles

Travel Guide - Holidays & Tourism in the Bouches-du-Rhône

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Arles - Tourism in the Bouches-du-Rhône

City of Art and History, Arles is famous for its ancient and Romanesque remains. The city indeed boasts several monuments inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List: Its Roman amphitheatre (Les Arènes); its ancient theatre; the Alyscamps, an alley lined by sarcophaguses; the Cryptoportiques, a network of underground galleries supporting the ancient forum; The Constantin's Thermal baths, the portal and cloister of the Church of Saintt-Trophime. The Romanesque church of Saint-Trophime constitutes an important stopping point on the Way of St James (Santiago de Compostela pilgrim route).

Arles offers a wide choice of museums, such as the museum of Ancient Arles and Provence, the Museon Arlaten (traditional art and Provençal culture), the Réattu museum (contemporary art), and the Camargue museum.

Numerous places in the city, such as the garden of the hospital where Van Gogh stayed when he cut off his ear (now Espace Van Gogh, a cultural centre), the forum square, the quaysides of the Rhone river and Les Arènes, were immortalised in famous paintings by Van Gogh during his stay in Arles. A full Van Gogh circuit is offered in the city, with panels representing the works of the artist at the various places where he was inspired.

Situated near the Camargue, the city has preserved its traditions: the Gardians festival (herdsmen's festival), the Costume festival (traditional dress festival), and bullfighting events in Les Arènes: the Feria de Pâques and Feria du Riz. Capital of photography, Arles organises an international photography gathering, a famous event featuring exhibitions, parties and conferences dedicated to this art.

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