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Travel bucket list idea:

Last updated: 07 July, 2023
Expert travel writer: Dana Facaros

Set on a low hill, this is the biggest and one of the best-preserved Roman amphitheatres in France, where 20,000 would come to watch gladiators fight to the death. Built in the late 1st century AD, it was inspired by Rome’s Coliseum, which had been built a decade earlier – and was later converted into a fortress in the Middle Ages (an era from which three towers still survive). Originally the amphitheatre had a third level of arcades, but even now there are lovely views over the rosy tile rooms of Arles from the top level.

A designated UNESCO World Heritage Site, it’s now used an arena again, it’s used for bullfights during Arles’ Easter and September festivals, as well as the bloodless Courses Camarguaises bullfights, and occasional gladiatorial re-enactments.

Be sure to visit the ancient theatre, too, which is included in the ticket – built in the century before the amphitheatre, it’s not as well-preserved, but still used for performances.

Price from: £8
Minimum age: Any
Age suitable: 18+
When: All year around

Getting there & doing it

Located right in the centre of town. There are no guided tours, but there are information boards in English.

When to do it

The amphitheatre is open all year round, seven days a week – except on days when it’s not hosting modern-day spectacles. Go early or late in the day when the shadows in the arcades are at their most evocative.

Our selection of the best Viator tours of this attraction or activity

Arles and Camargue Small-Group Half-Day Tour from Avignon


Arles and Camargue Small-Group Half-Day Tour from Avignon
Enjoy a small-group tour from Avignon to discover Arles and Camargues with an experienced guide. During this half day tour you will visit Arles, where art and history meet in perfect harmony, pond of Vaccares, where you will see pink flamingos, white horses and black bulls in their natural habitat and Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer.

Price: €75

Min age: 0

Rating 4.62 / 5 [37 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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Arles, Les Baux and Saint Remy de Provence from Marseille


Arles, Les Baux and Saint Remy de Provence from Marseille
This tour from Marseille will take you through the Plain of the Crau, to the ancient city of Arles, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Les Baux de Provence and Saint-Rémy de Provence. Numbers are limited to a maximum of eight people on this small group tour, ensuring you'll receive personalized attention from your guide. On certain days, a drive through Aix en Provence may be included to pick up and drop off passengers.

Price: €145

Min age: 4

Rating 4.65 / 5 [26 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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