Avignon, a city in southeastern France’s Provence region, the prefecture of the Vaucluse department in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region of Southeastern France. Surrounded by medieval ramparts, and renowned for its Palace of the Popes, a 14th-century fortress, Avignon is set on the Rhône River. From 1309 to 1377, it was the seat of the Catholic popes. It remained under papal rule until becoming part of France in 1791. This legacy can be seen in the massive Palais des Papes (Popes’ Palace) in the city centre, which is surrounded by medieval stone ramparts. Nearby, on the Rhône, are the remains of the medieval Avignon Bridge.