"Châteauneuf-du-Pape" Châteauneuf-du-Pape by longsanborn

Châteauneuf-du-Pape Travel Guide: 2 reviews and 17 photos

Visiting France's famous wine growing region

I went to Châteauneuf-du-Pape in May 2002. This is a village in Provence, in southern France. Its name derives from a castle built by the Popes when they ruled from Avignon. This village is dedicated to its world famous wine "Châteaunef du Pape" which is also part of the similarly famous Côtes du Rhône.

Castle ruins

We walked down the twisting narrow streets with their numerous beautiful fountains including the XIV° century Souspiron fountain, you'll see the ancient bread oven and olive press and you can walk as far as the Papal castle built by Pope Jean XXII between 1316 and 1333.

Wide stone staircases take you up to the fortress where the Popes lived until 1377, and their return to Rome. The fortress was badly destroyed by fire during the religious wars and then further damaged in 1944. Little remains apart from a short stretch of wall, one of the high towers and a lower room.

However from the ruins there is a 360 ° panoramic view over the Rhône valley , the Luberon, Avignon and the papal Palace which can be seen in the background.

One of the best wine-growing region

A bit of history: In the XIV century Pope Jean XXII, chose Chateauneuf as the location for their summer residences, and then decided to plant vines on the stony land which surrounded their landholdings.

For a long time the wine production remained a secret but started to become well known in the XVIII century but it was in 1929, that it was officially recognized and bestowed with it's own appellation Châteauneuf-du-Pape. This appellation means that the wine production in Chateauneuf du Pape is subject to strict controls to ensure that the 55 vineyards produce an extremely fine wine.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Beautiful vineyards, good wine tastings
  • Cons:Trip good for wine lovers
  • In a nutshell:Loved the beautiful landscape
  • Last visit to Châteauneuf-du-Pape: May 2002
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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