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Carpentras
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Tourist Information Centre

Carpentras Office de tourisme
Place Aristide Briande Carpentras
84200

Tel:+33 (0)4 90 63 00 78
Fax:+33 (0)4 90 60 41 02

Email the Carpentras Office de Tourisme

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Carpentras tourist information

where to go - what to see - what to do

Carpentras is of historical importance.  A Celtic settlement to begin with, it was the Greeks of Marseille who put Carpentras on the map travelling here to buy goats, skins, wheat and honey.  It then became a Roman city before establishing itself as the papal county of Venaissin in 1320.  It flourished in the 14th-century when Pope Clement V spent time here preferring it to Avignon.  Jews who had been expelled by the French crown also found refuge here protected by the pope but subject to restrictions such as having to pay to leave the ghetto.  Approx. 100 Jewish families still live in Carpentras today.  

There are reminders of Carpentras' past, for example, the 1367 synagogue which is the oldest in France and still contains the original baths and bakery used to make unleavened bread for Passover.  There is also a 14th-century Porte d'Orange which was commissioned by Pope Innocent IV in 1360.  The Porte d'Orange is all that remains of the original ramparts that have now been replaced by wide boulevards. 

On entering the town itself you'll find a charmingly unpretentious atmosphere which springs to life on a Friday when Comtat farmers fill almost half the town with their stalls.  The focal point of the market is on Rue des Halles in the Passage Boyer - an impressive glass arcade.

What to See - Carpentras Attractions

Fontaine de Vaucluse
W of Gordes, Chemin de la Fontaine
source of the river Sorgue and the most powerful spring in France
| Admission charge | Opening Times: Daily | Tel: +33 (0)4 90 20 32 22

Le Mont Ventoux
N of Carpentras on D938, Malaucene
for information on cycling, skiing, walking and guided nature trails of the Provence's favourite narrow ridge contact the tourist office in Malaucene
| Admission charge | Opening Times: Daily | Tel: +33 (0)4 90 65 22 59

Caromb
N of Carpentras off D938, Carpentras 84200
a lovely village with medieval fortifications and the regal church Notre-Dame-et-St-Maurice

Abbaye de Senanque
4km N of Gordes, Senanque 84220
one of the most venerated Romanesque/Cistercian monasteries in France
| Admission charge | Opening Times: Daily

Crillon-le-Brave
N of Carpentras off D938, Carpentras 84200
head here for fantastic views of the Mont Ventoux

L'Harmas
Serignan-du-Comtat on D976 NE of Orange,
the home of botanist & scientist Jean-Henri Fabre who created a herb & flower garden to observe insects
| Admission charge | Opening Times: Mon & Wed-Sat | Tel: +33 (0)4 90 70 00 44

Hotel-Dieu
Place Aristide Briand, Carpentras 84200
an 18th-century hospital with pleasant chapel containing tomb of Monseigneur d'Inguimbert who invested his wealth in the town
| Opening Times: Mon,We,Thur ams only

Musee Municipal
Rue Madeleine-Roch, Orange 84100
a good introduction to Orange's history dating back to the Roman era
| Admission charge | Opening Times: Daily | Tel: +33 (0)4 51 18 24

Musee Comtadin-Duplessis
Bd Albin-Durand, Carpentras 84200
the history of Carpentras plus 16th-17th-century paintings
| Admission charge | Opening Times: Closed Tue | Tel: +33 (0)4 90 63 04 92

Triumphal Arch
Avenue de L'Arc de Triomphe, Orange 84100
built approx. AD 20 the arch is decorated with battle scenes that indicate former Roman glory

Musee Sobirats
Rue du College, Carpentras 84200
contains displays of regional art and history
| Admission charge | Opening Times: Wed-Mon | Tel: +33 (0)4 90 63 04 92

Roman Theatre
Place de Freres-Mounet, Orange 84100
which dates from the 1st-century AD and is still used for performances
| Admission charge | Opening Times: Daily | Tel: +33 (0)4 90 51 17 60

Synagogue
Place Maurice Charretier, Carpentras 84200
founded in 1367 the synagogue was the focal point for Carpentras' strong Jewish community
| Opening Times: Mon-Fri | Tel: +33 (0)4 90 63 39 97