- Cathédrale St-Jean-Baptiste (Perpignan, Languedoc-Roussillon): In 1324, Sancho of Aragón began this cathedral, but the consecration didn't come until its completion in 1509. Despite the different builders and architects over the decades, it emerged as one of Languedoc's most evocative cathedrals. The bell tower contains a great bell that dates from the 1400s. The single nave is typical of church construction in the Middle Ages and is enhanced by the altarpieces of the north chapels and the high altar, the work of the 1400s and the 1500s.
- Cathédrale St-Just (Narbonne, Languedoc-Roussillon): Though construction on this cathedral, begun in 1272, was never completed, it's an enduring landmark. Construction had to be halted 82 years later to prevent breaching the city's ancient ramparts to make room for the nave. In High Gothic style, the vaulting in the choir soars to 40m (131 ft.). Battlements and loopholes crown the towering arches of the apse. The cathedral's greatest treasure is the evocative Tapestry of the Creation, woven in silk and gold thread.
- Cathédrale Notre-Dame-des-Doms (Avignon, Provence): Next to the Palais des Papes, this was a luminous Romanesque structure before baroque artists took over. It was partially reconstructed from the 14th through the 17th century. In 1859, it was topped by a tall gilded statue of the Virgin, which earned it harsh criticism from many architectural critics. The cathedral houses the tombs of two popes, John XXII and Benedict XII. You'd think this cathedral would be more impressive because of its role in papal history, but it appears that far more time and money went into the construction of the papal palace. Nevertheless, the cathedral reigned during the heyday of Avignon.
- Abbaye St-Victor (Marseille, Provence): This is one of France's most ancient churches, believed to be built in the 5th century by St. John Cassian to honor St. Victor, a 3rd-century martyr. The church was destroyed by the Saracens, except for the crypt. In the 11th and 12th centuries, a fortified Gothic church was erected. In the crypt are pagan and early Christian sarcophagi; those depicting the convening of the Apostles and the Companions of St. Maurice are justly renowned.
- Cathédrale Orthodoxe Russe St-Nicolas (Nice, French Riviera): With its magnificent blue and gold onion-shaped domes and turrets, there's no more beautiful Russian Orthodox cathedral outside Russia than this. Built by the Russian royal family in honor of the 20-year-old Grand Duke Nicholas Alexandrovich, who died in Nice of tuberculosis, the cathedral dates from the Riviera's golden age, when everyone from Russian ballerinas to grand dukes visited the French Riviera. It was classified as one of France's monuments historiques in 1987.
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