Notre Dame Cathedral

The Notre Dame is considered to be one of the finest examples of Gothic architecture in the world

Notre Dame
Notre Dame cc licensed photo by Олександр

The Notre Dame Cathedral is a name that many people will know. Notre Dame de Paris is its full name, meaning Our Lady of Paris. The cathedral is built in the Gothic style and is a Roman Catholic church that is still in use today. It is considered by many to be one of the finest examples of Gothic architecture in the world.

The Notre Dame received much notoriety from the famous novel 'The Hunchback of Notre Dame' by renowned author Victor Hugo which was published in 1831. Today it attracts over 13 million visitors and pilgrims each year. In holding with the view that worshiping the Lord should be open to all, there is no entrance fee to the cathedral. Visitors are asked to dress appropriately and to be as quiet as possible so as not to disturb those who come to worship in its hallowed halls.

A number of significant events have taken place in the Notre Dame Cathedral. Some of those events include the coronation of Henry VI as king of France, the marriage of James V of Scotland to Madeleine of France, the coronation of Napoleon I, as well as the beautification and canonization of Joan of Arc.

The Notre Dame Cathedral was built on the exact site of the first Parisian Christian church, Saint Etienne basilica. The basilica was built on the site of a Roman temple to Jupiter. Thus the Notre Dame Cathedral symbolizes the victory of Christianity over the pagan Roman gods to some pilgrims.

Though the Cathedral was ravaged during the French Revolution, it has been beautifully restored. It is a shame that the statues and stained glass windows destroyed during that time are lost forever. In spite of this desecration the Cathedral still has many architectural features that must be seen. There are the portals, the west front with its two enormous towers and the stained glass windows that remain, including the various rose windows.

The Notre Dame Cathedral is visited by many people each day and hundreds come to attend the various mass services. If you truly want to experience the Roman Catholic church then this is the place to do it.

Nearby attractions: Sainte Chapelle and The Latin Quarter

Facts For Your Visit

Fee: Access to the cathedral is open and free of charge every day of the year, during the opening hours. Donations are welcome if you feel it is appropriate. Access to the cathedral Towers is free with the Paris Pass otherwise admission charges apply.

Address: 6 Parvis Notre-Dame - Pl. Jean-Paul II, 75004 Paris, France

Phone: 01 42 34 56 10

Official Website: Notre Dame Cathedral


Metro / RER Line Nearest Station Walking Time
M4Saint-Michel7 minutes
M10Cluny - La Sorbonne6 minutes
M1, 7, 11, or 14Châtelet12 minutes
RER B or CSaint-Michel - Notre-Dame6 minutes

How to get to Notre Dame Cathedral by Metro / RER

By Metro: From Metro Line 4 exit at Saint-Michel Station and cross the road to your right and walk north straight across the Saint-Michel Bridge. You will already see the Notre Dame to your right as you are crossing the bridge. From Metro Line 1,7,11, or 14 exit at Châtelet Station and follow Rue Saint-Denis south and cross the bridge over the Seine. Keep walking south on Blvd du Palais and go left just before the next bridge. The Notre Dame is straight ahead. From Cluny - La Sorbonne Station exit and go east to Rue Saint-Jacques; then left (north)continuing across the bridge.

By RER: Take RER B or C to Saint-Michel - Notre-Dame Station and cross the Saint-Michel Bridge. Notre Dame is visible on your right.

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Rated 4.7 out of 5Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris Star Rating

5 Star Rating Beautiful, towering gothic cathedral situated on a small island in the middle of the Seine. You can visit around 6pm so that you can attend evening mass as well. There are numerous chapels to find your denomination for private prayer as well. The design of the cathedral is outstanding. The early designs and its evolution to the finished cathedral are shown in small scale models that are really interesting and informative. The stained glass, statues, etc are all magnificent. You can get here using the metro with the nearest station only a short walk away.

Wayne Ng - 4 days ago

5 Star Rating Although I unfortunately did not get the chance to go on a tour with Paris Trip, I would highly recommend this agency purely based on interaction. We came in with an enquiry that they were unable to help us with directly, and even after it transpired that they didn't sell what we were looking for they still went out of their way to assist us and helped us to solve our problem. The staff were so helpful and accommodating without any agenda and it was really appreciated. Based on the amazing service... This was a small-group tour from downtown Paris to Versailles, including lunch at one of the Versailles restaurants. A small-group tour like this is really important, because the lines for regular admission are quite long. Versailles is a spectacular palace on a huge estate with extensive gardens and fountains. This is the palace that other places in Europe are always comparing themselves to, but nothing is quite like the original.

Leggo Tung Lei - 14 days ago

5 Star Rating Notre Dame may not be the largest Catholic cathedral in the world, but it might be one of the most beautiful and famous with an estimated 14 million visitors a year. It is free to get inside. Stepping into this spiritual place took my breath away. It would be hard not to be impressed by its high arched stonework, ornate hanging chandeliers and spectacular stained glass. If you didn't visit Notre Dame, then you didn't finish your Paris visit.

Seetheworldwith Daph - 15 days ago

5 Star Rating Take advantage of your jet lag and go early if you are an American tourist. Gazing at the rose windows is one of the pinnacles of life, in my view. If you visit Paris often, you can sort of touch your past each time you gaze into the rose. Such beauty. The lines are long and the cathedral full during the day so it’s worth getting up early. Take the extra time to read the historical placards then wander about a bit and you’ll start seeing things you missed. Light a candle and take 15 min or half an hour to contemplate, meditate or pray, and settle into the history of the place. When else will you get this opportunity? Then walk around back along the river and stroll under the trees.

Laura Musikanski - 27 days ago

5 Star Rating Mass at this place is was an absolute magical / beautiful experience for me. The place is absolutely breath-taking. The vibe in this place is really uplifting, after my visit here, I actually feel like all the burden of my life have somehow disappeared. I was talking about this to a friend of mine who had accompanied me and she said the same. When I visited this place there was a box which encouraged visitors of all religions, cast and creed to place their petitions, which I did and I am happy to say that what asked for did come true (btw I am not religious, just thought I’d mention) The architecture is a masterpiece, the detail in the carvings is so intricate you can get lost in it. Don’t try to search the meaning of it, just enjoy it! It was so good and well done that you can easily get lost in a beautiful day dream. The stained glassed is magnificent, but to fully appreciate, this I would say visit on a sunny day and also do visit after sunset. The chandeliers, do make you feel like you are literally in the house of the almighty. It also does house the some relics, including the purported Crown of Thorns, a fragment of the True Cross, and one of the Holy Nails. Definitely a must see when in Paris!!

Ori D'Silva - 1 month ago


Interesting overview about the history and significance of Notre Dame in Paris

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