Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris

Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris (must see)

Notre Dame Cathedral is a major Catholic temple and remarkable architectural, historic and religious monument. It is the seat of the Archbishop of Paris and is a functional Roman Catholic church. It sits on a small island, Île de la Cité, in the middle of the river Seine, and has been in its place for over 800 years. Its foundation stone was laid in 1163, in the presence of Pope Alexander III. The cathedral took 200 years to build and was completed in 1345. Several architects were employed on the project, which is evident in the mixture of styles on the facade. The most significant change in the design occurred in the mid 13th century. Notre Dame was among the first buildings in the world to rely on arched exterior supports.

Many glorious, as well as tragic events, have been associated with the cathedral. In the midst of World War II, after the Cathedral had been restored to its full splendor, there were fears that the German invaders might destroy the newly renovated stained glass. To prevent that, a lion's portion of the glass, called the Rose Window (the biggest known glass window in the world, made in the 13th century), was removed, hidden and reinstalled only after the war was over.

The history of Notre Dame, of course, is incomplete without the famous Joan of Arc (Jeanne d'Arc), a peasant girl whose extreme bravery and spiritual richness led the army of France to victory in many battles against the English during the Hundred Years War. Aged only 19, she was captured by the enemy and executed. 25 years after her death, on July 7, 1456, Joan of Arc was declared a martyr by the Catholic Church. In 1909, Pope Pius X beatified her at Notre Dame Cathedral.

Inside the cathedral is a 17th-century organ which is fully operational. Another distinct historic feature of the site is the famous bell which has recently been redesigned to toll automatically. Visitors to the bell tower must prepare to climb 140 steps in order to hear the incredible sound of the bell and also to enjoy the bird's eye view of the city of Paris.

Why You Should Visit:
One of the few places in Paris that are free!
Beautiful and significant while also being in active use – the iconic design ensures it stands out from all the rest.

Tip:
It costs to climb the towers (book early!) unless you have the Paris Museum Pass, in which case there is no additional charge.

Opening Hours:
Mon-Fri: 8am-6:45pm; Sat-Sun: 8am-7:45pm
Sight description based on wikipedia

This sight is featured in a self-guided walking tour of Paris, France within the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" which can be downloaded from iTunes App Store or Google Play. Please download the app to your mobile phone or tablet for travel directions for visiting this sight. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

Download The GPSmyCity App

Download 'GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities' app for IOS   Download 'GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities' app for Android

Notre Dame Cathedral on Map

Sight Name: Notre Dame Cathedral
Sight Location: Paris, France
Sight Type: Religious
Guide(s) containing this sight: Hotel-de-Ville Walking Tour   Religious Sights Walking Tour  

Walking Tours in Paris, France

Create Your Own Walk in Paris

Create Your Own Walk in Paris

Creating your own self-guided walk in Paris is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Bourse-Opera Attractions Walking Tour

Bourse-Opera Attractions Walking Tour

Located on the right bank of the River Seine, the 2nd arrondissement, together with the adjacent 8th and 9th arrondissements, hosts an important business district, centred on the Paris Opéra. The area contains the former Paris Bourse (stock exchange), the Garnier Opera House and the famous Fragonard Perfume Museum.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.8 km
Luxembourg (6th Arr) Walking Tour

Luxembourg (6th Arr) Walking Tour

This tour takes you to explore the 6th or so-called Luxembourg arrondissement, one of the most expensive districts of Paris, home to posh boutiques, eateries and iconic cafes once favored by legendary writers, the likes of Hemingway and Camus. The area is particularly renowned for its unique architecture, rich history, and deeply rooted intellectual tradition. On this tour you will visit Jardin du Luxembourg, Le Palais de Luxembourg, Saint-Sulpice Church and other notable sights.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.4 km
Louvre (1st Arr) Walking Tour II

Louvre (1st Arr) Walking Tour II

This is part 2 of the 1st arrondissement tour of Paris exploring one of the smallest and oldest districts of the French capital, home to some of Paris's major landmarks, as well as business and administration offices . This itinerary includes Pavillon de Flore, Tuileries Gardens, Musée de l'Orangerie and many other prominent sights.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.6 km
The Da Vinci Code Walking Tour

The Da Vinci Code Walking Tour

Owing to the success of the controversial "The Da Vinci Code" book by Dan Brown, Paris has become even an more popular tourist destination. This self-guided tour will take you through the main places described in the novel so that you could see for yourself and decide whether to believe or not.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.0 km
Elysee (8th Arr) Walking Tour II

Elysee (8th Arr) Walking Tour II

This is the 2nd part of the 8th arrondissement tour of Paris, exploring one of the busiest districts of the French capital. Among the tourist highlights visited on this walk is the famous Arc de Triomphe, plus a number of museums and historic monuments.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.9 km
Elysee (8th Arr) Walking Tour I

Elysee (8th Arr) Walking Tour I

On this tour you will explore the 8th arrondissement of the French capital, one of its busiest and chic neighborhoods, thanks to the presence of Avenue des Champs Elysées, Arc de Triomphe and Place de la Concorde. If shine and glamour are up to your liking, we invite you to take this walk in a mixed crowd of fashionistas, tourists and local workers, and see some of Paris's most prominent attractions, such as as Le Grand Palais, Palais de L'Élysée, and more.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.6 km

Useful Travel Guides for Planning Your Trip


10 Unusual Things to Do in Paris, France

10 Unusual Things to Do in Paris, France

If you've visited Paris, you've probably seen the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, and Versailles. You probably whizzed through some world-class art, ate delicious food in restaurants with English menus, and bought crepes from a street cart. However, Paris has a lot of things to do that...
9 Must Try Cafes in Paris

9 Must Try Cafes in Paris

Discovering the best coffee and cafes in Paris can be difficult. The city is filled to the brim with brasseries and cafes, but very few offer the Anglophone standard of a good cup of coffee. This is a guide to inform tourists and Parisians alike of the new and somewhat established cafes in Paris...
8 Best Food Markets in Paris for Authentic French Produce

8 Best Food Markets in Paris for Authentic French Produce

The image of Parisians that you may have in your head as strolling through a colourful market with a basket on their arm, chatting to vendors and picking up fresh produce, is quite accurate. Most Parisians do visit local markets at least once a week to stock up on the freshest fruit, vegetables,...
Paris Souvenirs: 19 Distinctively French Products to Bring Home from Paris

Paris Souvenirs: 19 Distinctively French Products to Bring Home from Paris

You can hardly have enough money and luggage space to get all the takes your fancy in Paris. Luckily, with a little bit of tasteful advice and experience, you can save yourself some time and effort and pick up just about the right amount of things worth taking home. Listed here are some of the hints...
18 Must-Visit Cafes in Paris, France

18 Must-Visit Cafes in Paris, France

Paris is home to thousands of cafes; there is a café on practically every street corner you turn, in every square you stumble across, on every boulevard you stroll along. The age-old Parisian tradition of sitting around at rickety tables and shooting back espressos is a fundamental part of everyday...
Top 16 Vegetarian Restaurants in Paris

Top 16 Vegetarian Restaurants in Paris

The French have great respect for the fresh, organic produce yet France isn’t famous for its vegetarian cooking. Hence it’s a good idea for vegetarian visitors to Paris to come prepared in advance. This guide shows you places around the city which serve vegetarian food, complete with the...