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Straddling the Mediterranean Sea and the base of the Pyrenees, Perpignan is a misfit gem combining the languid charm of Southern France with a touch of Catalan spirit. Known for its historic architecture, picturesque streets and vibrant culture, this sun-soaked city offers a truly unique holiday experience.
Whether you are yearning for the thrill of historic exploration or craving a quiet retreat in the French sun, Perpignan's colourful houses, medieval festivals, and rich gastronomy are certain to captivate every visitor. Here's an insider’s guide to making the most of this sunny Mediterranean city.
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Ascend to Fort du Serrat d'en Vaquer
Enjoy a vigorous hike up to the formidable Fort du Serrat d'en Vaquer. From atop, drink in breathtaking 360° views of the Plaine du Roussillon and appreciate the intricate architecture of this historic fortress.
Explore the Palace of the Kings of Majorca
Walk the regal halls of the 13th Century Palace of the Kings of Majorca. This architectural marvel offers a fascinating journey through history, punctuated with stunning vistas of the surrounding plains and mountains.
Visit Perpignan Cathedral
Marvel at the stunningly austere Perpignan Cathedral. Its Catalan Gothic architecture and wide nave endow it with a majestic grandeur that's unmatched. It's not just a place of worship, but also of art, history, and national pride.
Experience Le Castillet
Venture to Le Castillet, a towering red brick fortress that stands as the iconic symbol of the city. Explore the museum within and then ascend to the top for a panoramic view of the vibrant cityscape.
Engage in City Festivals
Join the local festivities at Perpignan’s renowned International Festival of Photojournalism or the medieval Trobades festival. Get a feel for the vibrant local culture and spirit, right in the heart of the city.
Sample local cheeses
Indulge in the wide array of cheeses Perpignan takes pride in. Enjoy the local speciality of Roquefort while dining alfresco in the town square, or pick up some tangy Camembert at the bustling Marché de la République.
Sip regional wines
Raise a glass of the region's most excellent wines. Whether you're in a cosy bar or a chic restaurant, relish the fine Roussillon wines that this region is celebrated for.
Indulge in Cassoulet
Savour the taste of Cassoulet, a hearty stew often considered the soul of Catalan cuisine. Rich with white beans, pork, and sometimes lamb, it's a rustic yet aromatically complex dish that's sure to comfort and satisfy.
True to its Catalan roots, Perpignan serves up some exquisite tapas. Enjoy a platter of these bite-sized delights, paired with a cool glass of Sangria, at a trendy downtown bistro.
Taste Crème Catalane
End your meal with the sweet indulgence of Crème Catalane. This beloved dessert, similar to Crème Brûlée but spiced with cinnamon and lemon, delivers a lip-smacking finish to your Catalan culinary adventure.
Perpignan welcomes visitors with open arms throughout the year, but the most ideal time to visit is between April and October. The Mediterranean climate ensures hot summers and mild winters, making it a perfect sun-drenched getaway. The warmest months are June, July, and August, where temperatures soar to a comfortable average of 30.4°C.
Tourists flock to the city in July, August, and February, with the city coming to life with vibrant festivals and events. Equally, the month of September offers wonderful weather with fewer crowds, making it both an ideal and cost-effective time to explore the cultural and gastronomic delights of Perpignan.
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