Thursday, August 29, 2013

The Popes Palace All Lit Up

The days have cooled here in Provence, the summer festival season is winding down and I'm braced for the inevitable--yet always jarring!--reduction in gala garden-party invites. But there are still plenty of opportunities for summer-style diversions, such as this sound-and-light show at the 14th-century Palais des Papes in Avignon. Truth is, many of these things are more fun when it's not 32 degrees celcius at midnight. So...

Les Luminessences d’Avignon is a grand-scale sound and light show that runs until September 28. For 35 minutes, the main courtyard of the Popes Palace is bathed in colorful light, with monumental 3D images in sequence and a sound track to match. The show was created by Bruno Seillier, the artistic director behind the Nuit des Invalides show in Paris this year and last...and the 200 Years of Glory show at Versailles. The spoken part is in French (famous French actors describing the history of the 'old stones,' the lives of the Popes and more) but I'm told it's very beautiful and enjoyable either way.

Luminessences runs twice every evening (9:15 and 10:15 pm) through August 31st...once (9:15) on weekdays in September...and twice on Friday and Saturday nights in September. Doors open at 8:30 (first show) and 10 pm (second). Entry is €10 per person, reduced rate is 8€ and kids under 8 are free. You can order tickets online or buy them everyday (9 am to 10:15 pm) at the Palais des Papes or Monday through Saturday from 9 am to 5:45 pm (and Sundays from 10 am to 4:45 pm) at the Avignon Tourist Office. Meanwhile the site for Luminessences is here with lots more info about the show. And for any Avignon questions, you can always call the Tourist Office: 04 32 74 32 74.


  1. My New York clients saw the show this week and highly recommend it. So I am passing the info on to all my September clients as well.

  2. 24/7 in France: Great video of a great site in a great city - would love to see it!

  3. Thanks so much for the reminder Julie. Would love to catch this fabulous show. It looks stunning.
    As we head back to France we are looking forward to enjoying the wine harvests and Fall markets. Will watch your fabulous site for posts. All the best.

  4. Thank you for reminding me - just booked our tickets!

  5. I can't believe I didn't know about this! I'm going to book some tickets :)
    Thanks for posting Julie!

  6. Thanks for this information, Julie. I am hoping we will get up there to see it!

  7. Julie this looks spectacular, have you seen it? thanks I hope to see it someday...



  8. We went last night, having toured the Palais during the day (2 Euros off the evening tickets if you do both in the same day!) And it was fantastic. I did not try to follow the narration and still enjoyed it immensely. It really is 360 degrees and 3D entertainment. Merci for the recommendation!

  9. We went last night and truly enjoyed it. I did not try to follow the narration, but as we'd touredthe Palais during the day (saving 2 Euros on the night's tickets) we had no trouble following it. A great 3D x 360 degrees of entertainment. Merci!



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