Avenches is a little Swiss town in Canton Vaud, known also as the Capital of the Roman Helvetia. The town itself has quite a rich history from the time of the Romans.
The history of Avenches
2000 years ago, “Aventicum” was the capital of Roman Helvetia. The Emperor Augustus founded the Roman city of Aventicum on the site of the Helvetian capital and in the 2nd century it had over 20,000 inhabitants.
The habits and customs of Aventicum’s inhabitants 2000 years ago included entertaining themselves at the arena by attending gladiator fights, taking time for their well-being, as well as basking and relaxing at the thermal baths.
Things to do and visit:
Dating back to the early 2nd century A.D. and still in use nowadays! Especially for music festivals while the biggest of them is the famous TATTOO festival.
The Roman Museum
Opened in 1838, this museum is located in the 12th century fortified tower on the Roman amphitheater. It includes a display of mosaics and friezes and explores the history and romanization of Aventicum and the private life of the Helvetii. The key piece of the collection is a gold bust of the Emperor Marc-Aurèle.
The Old Town
Walk along the beautiful arcades and explore the Gothic and Renaissance style facades. Fun street to explore is “Rue des Alpes” – dating back to the medieval ages and with attics that were used to hand and dry tabaco. There are also numerous fountains to discover and a church.
The Benneville Tower
The Benneville tower is the largest tower of the inner wall. It dates back to the 14th century and its name comes from the Benenwyl family who owned the neighboring land.
La Promenade des 2000 ans
A charming public promenade along the old fortification with nice benches to chill and beautiful views to the Jura and Mount Vully.
While walking along the promenade you will find the castle. It was built in the 14th century and today home to communal offices and art gallery.
Bicycle Routes in Avenches
Avenches is very bicycle friendly and there are 3 fun routes you can do.