Situated thirty kilometres form the Spanish border, Perpignan, city of Art and History, retains from its past as the former continental capital of the kingdom of Majorca an historic centre of harmonious architecture, predominantly in the Gothic style.
Constructed at the end of the 14th century, then modified under Louis XI, the celebrated Castillet, the terrace of which gives an uninterrupted view over the roofs of the city, is the symbol of Perpignan. Once you have passed through the imposing fortified entrance, stroll along the little streets of shops, then set off to discover the treasures of the old town: the 14th-18th century Cathedral of St John the Baptist, topped with a wrought-iron bell tower, the choir of which has a 17th century marble altarpiece and whose Devout Christ chapel holds a 14th century woodcarving of Christ; the old funeral cloister of Saint-Jean from the beginning of the 14th century - the Campo Santo - the largest and oldest of this type in France; the Place de la Loge with its remarkable Gothic style building, the Loge de Mer; a palace-fortress of the Kings of Majorca from the 13th and 14th centuries, and its gardens overlooking the town; the forecourt of the Town Hall with its bronze statue by the sculptor Maillol, "La Méditerranée"...
You can also enjoy a moment of relaxation, ambling around the heart of the Bir Hakeim square or along the majestic Promenade des Platanes, with its many statues.
The Castillet, which was a gateway to the town then a state prison before being classed as an Historic Building in 1889, is now home to a museum which traces the history of North Catalonia from Antiquity to the present day.
Each year, around 23 April, the festival of Sant Jordi, the patron saint of Catalonia, is celebrated. Place Gambetta is transformed into a real open air bookshop, where the book is given pride of place by of publishers, writers and booksellers. Full of things to see and do, this special day is also that of the rose, which has been celebrated here since the 15th century!