8 Best Things To Do In The City Of Perpignan, France

things to do in perpignan france
| 4 min read

The medieval town of Perpignan, France is the capital of the Pyrénées-Orientales. The Roussillon City was also the continental capital of the Kingdom of Majorca during the 13th and 14th centuries. Conveniently located in the deep south of France, just 13 km (8.1 miles) west of the Mediterranean coast, this place has many historical sites and great places to visit. It is also accessible by train from the Gare de Perpignan railway station, which offers connections to several neighbouring cities, such as Paris, Barcelona, and Toulouse.

Let’s take a look at this list of the eight best things to do in the city of Perpignan, France. Check it out!

1. Visit the Basilica of Saint John the Baptist of Perpignan (Perpignan Cathedral)

Basilique-Cathédrale de Saint-Jean-Baptiste de Perpignan - panoramio
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Jorge Franganillo used under CC BY 3.0

First stop, a look at one of the national monuments of France - the church. Construction of this Roman Catholic cathedral began in 1324, by King Sancho of Majorca, but was later finished in the following century. It was built in the Catalan Gothic style, because of its association with the Kingdom of Majorca, but the facade was never finished. A portico and a clock tower were later added in the 18th century and the building was restored during the 19th and 20th century. Be amazed, as this cathedral also features stunning works of art inside, like the statue of the Virgin and the child.

Perpignan Cathedral

Address: 1 Rue de l'Horloge, 66000 Perpignan, France

Website: Perpignan Cathedral

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2. See the Palais des Rois de Majorque (Palace of the Kings of Majorca)

Le Palais des Rois de Majorque (Perpignan) (8839918960)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Jean-Pierre Dalbéra used under CC BY 2.0

Take a look at this beautiful palace, thanks to King James II of Majorca, the king in 1276, who was behind the idea of building a palace with a garden, on the hill of Puig del Rey. This palace is also a fortress and features a beautiful garden overlooking the whole city of Perpignan. Guided tours are offered, which will bring you to features of the palace, including the dining room, chapel and the throne room. Time to take out those cameras and get a shot of the beauty this place has to offer.

Palace of the Kings of Majorca

Address: 4 Rue des Archers, 66000 Perpignan, France

Website: Palace of the Kings of Majorca

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3. Visit Le Castillet

Perpignan - Le Castillet
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user [Unknown] used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Built in the year of 1368, by Guillame Gitard, Le Castillet was used to fight off invaders and serve as the defensive wall of the city. This place not only used to be the city gate but also a prison until the end of the 19th century. Today, Les Castillet often houses different contemporary art exhibitions.

Le Castillet

Address: 1 Boulevard Wilson, 66000 Perpignan, France

Website: Le Castillet

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4. See the stunning Jardin de Sant-Vicens

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Take a break and get a breath of fresh air in this beautiful garden, located on Rue Sant Vicens. This garden offers a relaxing view with a wide range of exotic flowers, orange trees and oleanders. Aside from the garden of the Palace of the Kings of Majorca, this place is also the perfect spot for nature lovers! They also have a shop, which offers textiles and ceramic pots. Better increase your baggage allowance if you plan to take home a pot!

Jardin de Sant-Vicens

Address: 66000 Perpignan, France

Website: Jardin de Sant-Vicens

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5. See Loge de Mer

Perpignan, Loge de mer.
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user H2k4 used under CC BY-SA 3.0

“Sea Lodge” in English, this is one of the must-visit historical sites of Perpignan. Conveniently located in the heart of the old town, Sea Lodge used to be a stock exchange and maritime tribunal, used to regulate sea trade. This also became the town hall for a time. The building is made of river stones, which represent the kind of architecture seen in the region. Loge de Mer is one of the first eight buildings in the region classified as a historic monument, which makes it a hard-to-resist destination.

Loge de Mer

Address: Place de la Loge, 66000 Perpignan, France

Website: Loge de Mer

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6. Eat food with the freshest ingredients at La Galinette

Restaurant Cuisine Food French
Source: Pixabay

Need a break from all the sightseeing? Then try eating at restaurant Le Galinette, which recently received a coveted Michelin rating. This restaurant is a good stop for romantic people, families with children or special occasions. The ideas man behind this successful fine dining restaurant is Chef Christophe Comes, who chooses ingredients directly from his own 2-hectare (4.9-acre) garden. Aside from his talent, it is his love for fine ingredients that allows this restaurant to serve fresh and sumptuous food. Definitely worth a stop!

La Galinette

Address: 23 Rue Jean Payra, 66000 Perpignan, France

Website: La Galinette

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7. Try Catalan cuisine at Le Saint Jean

Soup Tapas Meal
Source: Pixabay

If you are near St. Jean-Baptist Cathedral, you may stumble upon this highly recommended restaurant in the area. If you want to experience innovative dishes, both Catalan-inspired and classic French cuisine, Le Saint Jean is a must visit. This cozy place has a friendly ambiance that will also make you feel relaxed and satisfied while getting a taste of their fresh, seasonal and local products.

Le Saint Jean

Address: 1 Rue Cité Bartissol, 66000 Perpignan, France

Website: Le Saint Jean

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8. See Hotel Pams

Perpignan-Hôtel Pams-16
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Wayne77 used under CC BY-SA 4.0

This elegant mansion in Perpignan was built between 1852 and 1872, by one of the founders of JOB Cigarette Paper Company, Pierre Bardou. It was later transformed during the late 1890’s by Bardou’s son-in-law, Jules Pams, a politician with a love for art. The mansion displays the artistic choice of the wealthy bourgeois during the 20th century, with its stunning and decorative interior. Hotel Pams is owned by the city of Perpignan today and is open to the public for a visit. The sad part is, it is only open occasionally, but if you are lucky, admission is free!

Hotel Pams

Address: 18 Rue Emile Zola, 66000 Perpignan, France

Website: Hotel Pams

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A Catalan experience

Visiting Perpignan, France will take you to a different experience, which is mostly Catalan inspired. The city is rich in history and without a doubt, it still shows in the attractions and most of the structures around the place. There are a lot of activities you can do if you want to relax and just sit down while satisfying your eyes and your stomach! Pack your bag and enjoy a wonderful vacation in the city of Perpignan, France!

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Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
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Catherine is a small-town woman who thrives in an ecstatic world, finding joy in planned and spontaneous travel. Life, to her, is a series of surprises waiting to be explored with open eyes....Read more

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