Arles is a city of 52,000 as of 2005 located in the south of France on the banks of the River Rhone. Arles is home to some of the most impressively intact Roman monuments outside of Rome. Arles is also known as the subject of over 300 paintings by Vincent Van Gogh. Van Gogh was most likely attracted to Arles by the Provencal landscapes and quiet nature of the town, which was off the beaten track when he arrived there in 1888.
There are two particularly impressive Roman monuments in Arles. One is the Roman theater which held 20,000 spectators and still functions as the venue for outdoor concerts in the summer months. The Roman arena, or amphitheater, however, is the true gem. Today it functions as the home for numerous bullfights, and is in remarkably preserved condition. We have many More France Vacation Information, Travel Review and Attractions Articles Now Available.
Other Roman monuments to see while you are in Arles include the Roman baths – The Thermae of Constantine. These thermal baths once were a part of Constantine’s grand Palace and can be toured. There is also an elaborate Roman necropolis just outside of the old town.
There is also an outstanding Ancient History Museum in Arles which features one of the best collections of Roman sarcophagi found anywhere outside of Rome itself.. There are some non-Roman structures to be admired as well, such as the Church of St. Tropohime, which was once a Cathedral and is one of the best examples of Romanesque architecture you will see.
Although Van Gogh painted so many of his most famous works in Arles, including The Night Cafe, Starry Night Over the Rhone, the Yellow Room, and L’Arlesienne, a grand total of zero Van Gogh paintings are on display here. You can however enjoy the famous Photography Festival that takes place in Arles every year. We have many More France Vacation Information, Travel Review and Attractions Articles Now Available.