Christian Sanctuaries Tour in Bordeaux (Self Guided), Bordeaux

You can find a good concentration of various religious buildings in Bordeaux: churches, cathedrals and temples. Do not hesitate to take a tour through the famous Christian places of worship in town. The guide below may help you have this enriching experience.
How it works: Download the app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play to your mobile phone or tablet. The app turns your mobile device into a personal tour guide and its built-in GPS navigation functions guide you from one tour stop to next. The app 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

Christian Sanctuaries Tour in Bordeaux Map

Guide Name: Christian Sanctuaries Tour in Bordeaux
Guide Location: France » Bordeaux (See other walking tours in Bordeaux)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 7
Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.5 Km or 3.4 Miles
Author: alexander
1
Basilique Saint-Seurin

1) Basilique Saint-Seurin (must see)

The Basilique Saint-Seurin stands on the edge of a public park, close to Place des Martyrs de la Resistance. Whilst its address recalls the modern history of France, the church itself is one of the city’s oldest buildings. Extended and renovated through the ages, the crypt dates back to the 6th century – almost to the origins of Christianity. It was first constructed in the age following the Roman Empire when Christian groups fought for control of France. One such group, the Merovingians, took control of much of Western France, including Bordeaux. They believed that they possessed a direct bloodline to Jesus Christ. The marble tombs of many Merovingians can be seen in the ancient crypt.

The Basilique Saint-Seurin is a UNESCO listed World Heritage Site and one of Bordeaux’s most historic buildings. Romanesque in origin, it has had many Gothic elements added through the years. Chapels from the 11th and 14th centuries are housed within the nave. In the 15th century, extensive Gothic ornamentation, including sculptures and keystones, were added to the church interior. The church and crypt are both free to visit.

Why You Should Visit:
The architecture is a treat to explore with the Romanesque intact.
The stained-glass windows are spectacular, largely 19th century.
The crypt is a surprise with exceptional 6th-century sarcophagi & original chapels.

Tip:
Outside there is a very interesting archaeological site to explore.

Opening Hours:
Tue-Sat: 8:30am-7:30pm; Sun: 9am-12:30pm / 6-8:30pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
2
Église Notre-Dame

2) Église Notre-Dame (must see)

The Église Notre-Dame is an 11th-century Gothic church located at Rue Mably in the northern quarter of the city center. One of the city’s most popular buildings, its facade as well as its name bring to mind the more famous Notre Dame church, found in the center of Paris. Built by Pierre Duplessy, a renowned architect and town planner in the late 17th century, the church is a listed historical monument.

The church’s patron saint is St. Dominic; his figure is carved into the ornate facade of the building, receiving a rosary from the Virgin Mary. The church was founded after Dominican Catholics were moved from their convent in 1678, in order for King Louis XIV to expand his palace. Due to a dispute with neighboring buildings as they searched for free land in a growing city, the church was forced into building a place of worship that faced east rather than west.

The interior of the Église Notre-Dame is known for its ornate Gothic style decoration. The church holds regular mass, and visitors at any time will find locals and tourists alike kneeling in prayer in a building still known for its tranquility, despite consistently high tourist numbers.

Why You Should Visit:
The 19th-century paintings on the walls inside are interesting, the large organ and stained glass are quite impressive, but it is the façade, facing into a small, quiet square, that is the real star.

Tip:
Try to visit during the start of service – no one bothers you and you can stand at the side where the ancient baptismal fountain and chapels are.
Next door is the Cour Mably which used to be the cloister for Notre-Dame and is now a venue for temporary exhibitions but still worth a look, partly in its own right but also because you get a good view of the church tower from within the cloister.

Opening Hours:
Mon-Sat: 9am-7pm; Sun: 8:30am-7pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
3
Église Saint-Pierre

3) Église Saint-Pierre (must see)

Église Saint-Pierre, or the Church of St. Peter, is a Medieval church situated in the heart of Old Bordeaux. Like many French churches from the 14th and 15th centuries, the Saint-Pierre is notable for its quirky, flamboyant Gothic architecture, particular an unusual single square bell tower on the left-hand side as you approach, giving the building a lopsided quality. The church’s interior is well known for drawing together architectural highlights from through the ages. An ornate Gothic portal stands next to a brilliant white 17th-century pieta, which illuminates the inner walls of the church.

The church is surrounded by an elegant square, the Place Saint-Pierre. Together they form the heart of this ancient district of Bordeaux, also named after St Peter. A bustling area of the city, from medieval times, it was largely destroyed in the 18th century. The narrow streets built in the medieval district’s place carry a timeless quality, each lined with similar, well-preserved townhouses. Look out for the peculiar faces on many of the house facades. Known as ‘mascarons’, they were a symbol of wealth for the homeowner.

Why You Should Visit:
Undeniably pretty with some unusual adornments externally. Also, as many have observed, it's very peaceful.
Sits in a shady, tranquil, small square that makes you feel you're in the middle of a small town rather than a busy city.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 8am-6pm, except Sundays when services are held between 8am and 12pm.
Sight description based on wikipedia
4
Cathédrale Saint-André

4) Cathédrale Saint-André (must see)

The Saint-André Cathedral, often known simply as Bordeaux Cathedral, is located at Place Bey Berland in the heart of Bordeaux city center. The Roman Catholic Cathedral of Saint-André was consecrated in 1096 by Pope Urban II; however, only a wall within the nave remains of the original Romanesque structure. The majority of the building has survived from the 14th & 15th centuries. The cathedral’s famous Royal Gate dates to the early 13th century. The entire building, including the separate bell tower, the Tour Pey Berland, is listed as a French national monument.

The cathedral has played its part in the history of Bordeaux. In 1137, Eleanor of Aquitaine, one of the region’s most famous historical figures, married Prince Louis VII. Within a few months, they became King & Queen of France, but their marriage was annulled in 1152. Eleanor went on to marry Henry Plantagenet, a future king of England. The cathedral boasts two Gothic towers above the main entrance, in addition to the vertiginous bell tower directly adjacent to the main building. Still an active place of worship, it holds mass each Sunday and is still the seat of the Archbishop of Bordeaux-Bazas – a position once held by Pey Berland, after whom the bell tower and surrounding square are named.

Why You Should Visit:
French cathedrals have grandeur & splendour in abundance, and this one is top of the pile, with well-preserved interior decoration and design.
The bell tower, which stands separate from the cathedral, is also worth pointing out as the views from the top are worth the effort of the climb up.

Tip:
There is no entry fee, but they do take donations.
If you walk in, make sure you look to the right, to the back and admire the giant organ pipes.
To appreciate the cathedral from a different perspective, climb the Pey Berland tower nearby.

Opening Hours:
Mon-Sat: 10am-1pm / 3-7:30pm; Sun: 9:30am-1pm / 3-7:30pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
5
Basilique Saint-Michel

5) Basilique Saint-Michel (must see)

The Basilica of Saint-Michel is a Catholic church located on Place Canteloup, a historic square close to the Pont de Pierre bridge. It was built at the turn of the 15th century in the Gothic Flamboyant style. A highly unusual design, it features a cruciform church building and a separate bell tower. The tower, which tapers to form an elegant, ornately decorated spire, is 114 meters tall and was built after the church building, sometime in the 15th century. It makes the Basilica of Saint-Michel the city’s tallest building, and the second tallest church in all of France.

The dizzying height of the tower makes it visible across much of Bordeaux, a flat city with relatively few tall buildings. It is worthwhile heading towards this landmark wherever you are in the city, as the church itself houses a number of interesting artifacts. The church pulpit depicts St Michael slaying a dragon, whilst the central stained glass window was designed by Couturat. Beneath the church lies a cemetery and catacombs from the city’s Roman era, which lay undiscovered until 1881.

Why You Should Visit:
A gothic extravaganza on the outside, standing clear in the square. Easy to walk around and view from all angles.
Inside is typical except for the marvelous 20th-century windows, some of the best modern stained-glass in Europe.
One of the chapels is given over to information both on the glass in the basilica and on the 'modern masters'.

Tip:
Sit outside by night in one of the many coffee/wine bars in the square and enjoy the view!

Opening Hours:
Mon-Sat: 10am-12:30pm / 2-5:30pm; Sun: 2-5:30pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
6
Église Sainte-Croix

6) Église Sainte-Croix

The Eglise Sainte-Croix is a former Roman Catholic abbey, which stands on raised ground to the south of Bordeaux city center. The abbey was originally a Benedictine monastery, built in the 7th century by followers of the Merovingians. It was rebuilt in the 11th and 12th centuries, and given the Romanesque facade that still stands today. It is separated from the city center by a small stream, known as L’Eau Bourde, or Foolish Water. Since 1890, it has been the home of Ecole des Beaux Arts, a local fine art school.

The abbey has suffered a troubled existence. Whilst its exact date of foundation is unknown, it is recorded that Saint Benoit-sur-Loire, a beatified French monk, died here in 679. The original building was destroyed by the Saracens in 730, and the second construction did not survive the 9th century Norman raids on the city. The abbey came back strongly from these disasters, growing enough to build a larger church in the late 11th century. Through the Middle Ages, the grand yet expensive Eglise Saint-Croix became less used by monks, who eventually sought permission to build a new monastery. The abbey became a hospice in 1793, ending over a thousand years as a place of worship.
Sight description based on wikipedia
7
Eglise Sainte Eulalie

7) Eglise Sainte Eulalie

Eglise Sainte Eulalie is an old but outstanding building designed in a Gothic style. It warmly welcomes people from everywhere, offering religious services and, occasionally, some very nice concerts.
Sight description based on wikipedia

Walking Tours in Bordeaux, France

Create Your Own Walk in Bordeaux

Create Your Own Walk in Bordeaux

Creating your own self-guided walk in Bordeaux 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.
Bordeaux Famous Architecture Walk

Bordeaux Famous Architecture Walk

Bordeaux is classified as a "City of Art and History". The city has been included in UNESCO World Heritage List as "a great urban and architectural ensemble". Bordeaux is one of Europe's largest and most original 18th century architectural center. Don't miss the opportunity to tour the most famous architecture in Bordeaux.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.4 km
Contemporary Landmarks Tour

Contemporary Landmarks Tour

Bordeaux is rich in old historical landmarks, yet it features many edifices of different contemporary architectural ideas, which represent the new and modern life of the city. Get familiarized with this side of the city's architecture and have fun visiting contemporary landmarks of Bordeaux.

Tour Duration: 4 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 9.4 km
Bordeaux Landmarks Walk

Bordeaux Landmarks Walk

As one of the most appreciated cities in France, Bordeaux is loaded with beautiful attractions. The city is great for any day or night walk. A tour of some of the most renowned landmarks in the city will create lasting impressions and wonderful memories. Don't miss this opportunity.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.5 km
Bordeaux Cultural Tour

Bordeaux Cultural Tour

As a cultural center, Bordeaux plays an important role not only in France alone. The city abounds in history, culture and traditions. Everyone who comes to Bordeaux has lots of new things to see and discover. If you’re an art lover and want to see the most important cultural places in the city, you may use the tour below, which will help you find them easier.

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 6.6 km
Daily Life Tour in Bordeaux

Daily Life Tour in Bordeaux

Walking through Bordeaux and sightseeing is nice, but if you want to have a true cultural experience, we suggest you find out more about the daily life of locals, their traditions and routine. Here is a list of the common places that locals visit on a regular basis.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.7 km
Museum Walking Tour in Bordeaux

Museum Walking Tour in Bordeaux

As you take a short walk around Bordeaux you'll notice that several places here express real English influence, and that is because Bordeaux was managed by Englishmen for quite a long time. For a better understanding of the history and culture of this town you may visit some of its most popular and informative museums which are listed in the following guide.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.7 km