Notre Dame Basilica

If you appreciate beautiful historical buildings and architecture the Basilica of Notre-Dame is a must see

Notre-Dame Basilica in Montreal
Notre-Dame Basilica in Montreal cc licensed photo by Geoff Livingston

One of Montreal's most impressive historical sites is the Basilica of Notre-Dame. Referred to as a masterpiece of Gothic Revival architecture, both the outside and inside of the Basilica are displays of architectural ingenuity.

The Basilica built between 1824-1829 is the work of James O'Donnell an architect from New York and then later (1870-1900) Cure' Victor Rousselot and Victor Bourgeau. When standing outside the Basilica looking up you will see the twin towers looming over you in all their majesty. The western tower is called 'Perseverance' and the eastern tower called 'Temperance'. Each tower is home to the church bells of the Basilica. Perseverance houses the great bell nick-named 'Jean- Baptiste' whilst Temperance houses 10 smaller bells.

The inside of the Basilica is impressive with stained glass windows, vaulted ceilings, sculptures, statues and paintings. But what is even more impressive are the fine details which have gone into creating the Gothic style of the church. The columns, the organ, the church pews, the banisters, the pulpit and the altarpiece are all meticulously and beautifully crafted. The use of rich colours makes one feel as if you are in a spring garden or in some heavenly realm. At night time you can also experience a sound and light show within the Basilica which is bound to make your experience even more so memorable.

In addition to the sound and light show, the Basilica of Notre-Dame also hosts many concerts by various orchestras and other music groups. Admission to these concerts does vary from the admission to the actual Basilica, so be sure to check the website for more details on admission for the concerts. In order to be able to truly experience the majesty of a service at the Basilica, one must attend one of the religious events held there. The traditional organ is played and a traditional church choir leads the worship.

To get a true sense of the history of Montreal you have to visit the basilica for what would a visit to a French city in Canada be without a visit to its Sacré-Cœur.

Facts For Your Visit

Fee: Various admission fees apply, see the website for the full fee schedule.

Notre Dame Basilica Hours:
Opening hours may differ on holidays

  • Monday: 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM
  • Tuesday: 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM
  • Wednesday: 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM
  • Thursday: 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM
  • Friday: 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM
  • Saturday: 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM
  • Sunday: 12:30 – 4:00 PM

Address: 110 R. Notre Dame O, Montréal, QC H2Y 1T1, Canada

Phone: (514) 842-2925

Official Website: Notre Dame Basilica

Notre Dame Basilica Reviews

Rated 4.7 out of 5 Star Rating

5 Star Rating Expensive but beautiful. Even as a non-Christian I found it incredibly peaceful to just sit on the benches and look around. It's also cool that the stained glass windows pay homage to the Christian religious history of Montréal rather than larger Christian history. The one downside is the big boards about the price of lighting devotional candles around the church which reminds you about your wallet.
Raskuly - a week ago

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5 Star Rating Came here to see the Aura show. The show was not very long but I loved how the music and the light helped us appreciate the details of the architecture of the basilica. I would definitely recommend to see the show at least once. Unfortunately, we are not allowed to take pictures or videos of the show so here are just some pictures from before the show.
Evelyne Nguyen-Khac - in the last week

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5 Star Rating Spectacular artwork and architecture make this holy place truly awe inspiring and reverent. Well worth the $16 admission per adult. Disappointed to learn that the Aura light show only occurs once per day at 6:00pm.
Juliet Martin - 3 weeks ago

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5 Star Rating Beautiful Cathedral with amazing light and music show. Outside it reminds of Notre Dame de Paris. Inside it is like a museum with its beautiful architecture and paintings. Organ sounds great!
Irina Roskina - a week ago

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5 Star Rating We've visited countless churches and basilicas across North America and the UK. There is something special going on here. Enter this hallowed building and be prepared to be amazed! Stunning. Everything. Also highly recommend the Aura evening show, which will leave you breathless. God bless all of us!
Wiji Sixstar - 2 months ago

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Metro Line Nearest Station Walking Time
Line 2 - OrangePlace-d'Armes4 Minutes

How to get to Notre Dame Basilica by Metro

By Metro: Take Metro Line 2 to Place-d'Armes; exit and go right (south) on St. Urbain Street. You will see the Basilica straight ahead as you approach.

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