Place du Palais, Avignon
When Italy was going through a time of social unrest in the 14th century, the papacy briefly moved to Avignon. Over a period of 100 years, a succession of Popes built up the Palais des Papes (the Pope’s Palace) in the centre of Avignon. It’s impressive and the largest Gothic structure in Europe from the Middle Ages. The square that surrounds it, the Place du Palais, is also impressive, and as big in scale as the palace. There are lots of restaurants, hotels and cafés around the square; it’s where the tourist train leaves from and where the kids hang out on the merry-go-round. It’s touristy but essential viewing.