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Notre Dame | Parisian Gothic masterpiece

The Notre Dame Cathedral, located on the Île de la Cité in the heart of Paris, stands as a magnificent example of Gothic architecture and a symbol of French heritage. Île de la Cité, one of the two remaining natural islands in the Seine River within Paris, is considered the historic heart of the city. It is known for its Gothic architecture and is considered one of the finest examples of French Gothic architecture worldwide. It flaunts intricate stone carvings, stunning stained-glass windows, and significant Christendom relics, like the piece of True Cross and Crown of Thorns. Though Notre Dame burnt down in 2019 and the inside is not open to visitors, seeing Notre Dame from the outside alone is an experience that combines beauty, history, and spirituality, making it a must-see destination for anyone visiting Paris. Keep reading to know more about this cathedral landmark!

Why visit Notre Dame in Paris?

Notre Dame - Paris
  • Architectural Marvel: Notre Dame stands as a testament to French Gothic architecture, boasting intricate detailing and design that has captivated visitors for over 8 centuries.
  • Historical Significance: This cathedral has been at the heart of pivotal moments in French history, from Napoleon Bonaparte's coronation to Joan of Arc's beatification. It's a living witness to France’s dynamic past.
  • Cultural Icon: A symbol of France's rich cultural heritage and located in the heart of Paris, Notre Dame has inspired countless artists, writers, and filmmakers. 
  • Religious Importance: Beyond its historical and cultural significance, prior to the fire, Notre Dame served as a place of worship and pilgrimage for Catholics worldwide.
  • Restoration and Resilience: The devastating fire of 2019 transformed Notre Dame into a symbol of resilience and hope. Witness the ongoing restoration, a testament to human determination and craftsmanship.

Which Notre Dame ticket is best for you?

If you are on a budget

Go for: Exhibition Tour

Duration: Flexible

Guide: No

  • With these tickets, you get access to the 'Notre-Dame de Paris: From Builders to Restorers' exhibit.
  • You will learn about the traditional and authentic restoration techniques used to revive the cathedral.
  • These tickets are the most affordable out of the lot and will give you great insight into Notre Dame Cathedral.

Recommended tour:

If you are short on time

Go for: Walking Tours

Duration: 1-2 Hour

Guide: Professional tour guide

  • Explore Notre Dame and admire the facade and iconic gargoyles on a walking tour with these tickets.
  • Depending on your ticket, the tour covers the crypt entrance and some Parisian landmarks, including nearby islands.
  • Gain insights from a guide into Notre Dame's history and details of the tragic fire night.

Recommended tours:

If you want to explore beyond

Go For: Combo Tours

Duration: Flexible

Guide: Audio Guide

  • Combo tickets offer Paris exploration beyond the Notre Dame exhibition. Club your cathedral exhibition experience with a visit to the Eiffel Tower or a Seine River Cruise.
  • These tickets allow you to discover significant landmarks of Paris in a limited time and at an affordable price.
  • The tours come with an audio guide, thus allowing you to gain knowledge about the places you visit.

Recommended tour:

Discounted tickets

  • You can save 10-17% if you avail combo tour tickets.
  • Additionally, combo tickets allow individuals under 17 to enter the Notre Dame exhibition for free on the presentation of a valid ID proof at the venue.

Cancellation policy

  • You can only cancel two of the Notre Dame tickets up to 24 hours before the start of the experience.
  • Other tickets can be used at any time up to the date mentioned on the ticket. Make sure to check the validity of your tickets before purchasing.

Notre Dame highlights

Impressive façade

Notre Dame's façade, adorned with intricate sculptures, narrates biblical tales, immersing visitors in its rich history and architectural grandeur, a testament to the craftsmanship of bygone eras.

Gothic rose windows

Mesmerizing Rose Windows, exemplars of Gothic stained-glass artistry, paint Notre Dame's exterior in vibrant hues, a timeless display of enduring beauty and unparalleled artistic brilliance.

Two bell towers

Notre Dame's 226 ft towers provide a picturesque Parisian panorama, a unique vantage point offering a captivating perspective of the city's landscape and an ideal photo opportunity.

Archeological crypts

Below the Parvis lies the Crypte Archéologique, revealing historical ruins discovered during construction—a fascinating journey into Notre Dame's hidden history and the ancient remnants of Paris.

Timeless statue

The Northside portal boasts a 13th-century statue of the Virgin Mary, adding a touch of religious and artistic significance to Notre Dame's exterior, a timeless symbol of faith and craftsmanship.

Gargoyles and chimeras

Notre Dame's iconic gargoyles and chimeras, both whimsical and functional, adorn the cathedral with quirky designs, enhancing its architectural grandeur while serving as unique water drainage elements.

Plan your visit to Notre Dame

Getting there
Visitors tips
Gargoyle Notre Dame, Paris

Notre-Dame de Paris exhibition

  • Entry time: 11 AM to 7 PM

Notre-Dame de Paris

The cathedral closed its doors to the public, post the fire outbreak in 2019. It's expected to reopen by 2024.

Metro to notre Dame, Paris

Notre-Dame de Paris exhibition

Address: 1 Pl. du Trocadéro et du 11 Novembre, 75116 Paris, France.

Find on Map

  • By Bus: 32, 63
    Nearest stop: Trocadero
  • By Metro: 6, 9
    Nearest stop: Trocadero
  • Wheelchair accessibility is ensured.
  • Guide dogs are allowed on the tour.
  • Some tours include professional tour guides or audio guides.
Smoking prohibited at Notre Dame, Paris
  • As of today, the Notre Dame Cathedral remains closed to the public owing to the devastating fire. However, it's important to be respectful of your surroundings when visiting.
  • Avoid littering, damaging the environment or the property, and respect the privacy of other visitors.
  • If there are security measures in place, make sure to follow them carefully. This may include passing through a metal detector or having your bag checked.
  • Avoid shouting or making loud noises that could disturb other visitors.
  • Smoking is prohibited in the vicinity of Notre Dame, so make sure to avoid smoking or using e-cigarettes in the area.
  • Tripods and flash photography is not permitted inside the exhibition.
  • La Grange Aux Canards (350 m): Experience the charm of French cuisine in a rustic setting at La Grange Aux Canards, renowned for its delectable duck dishes and warm, welcoming atmosphere.
  • Respiro, Trattoria - Pizzeria (400 m): Indulge in traditional Italian flavors at Respiro, where a cozy ambiance sets the stage for savoring delightful pizzas and traditional Italian dishes.
  • Cafe Med (450 m): Enjoy authentic Mediterranean cuisine at Cafe Med, offering a laid-back setting to relish diverse dishes and drinks inspired by the region's vibrant flavors.
Musée d'Orsay near Notre Dame, Paris
  • Panthéon: (2 km) The Panthéon is an 18th-century church turned neoclassical mausoleum. It serves as the resting place for notable French figures, including Voltaire, Rousseau, and Victor Hugo.
  • Centre Pompidou: (3.5 km) A contemporary art museum and cultural center, known for its distinctive modern architectural style, featuring brightly colored pipes and ducts, and boasts a vast collection of over 100,000 works.
  • Musée d'Orsay: (3.5 km) Uniquely housed in a former railway station, this museum is renowned for its extensive collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist art, showcasing works by renowned artists such as Monet, Van Gogh, and Renoir.
  • Notre-Dame de Paris Exhibition: (6 km) Immerse yourself in history at the City of Architecture & Heritage, with a captivating exhibit showcasing the iconic cathedral and its creators. Don't miss this unique link to Notre Dame's restoration architect, Eugène Viollet-le-Duc.
Notre Dame in Morning, Paris

While you can't visit the Notre Dame and see the cathedral from inside, here are some tips to keep in mind if you want to see the Cathedral from outside:

  • Notre Dame draws tons of visitors, especially in peak season. Arrive early for an unobstructed view without battling the crowds.
  • Don't rush at Notre Dame; the exterior is exceptionally beautiful. Take your time to appreciate the intricate architecture and sculptures.
  • The Cathedral remains a place of worship. Show respect for those paying homage and maintain a reverent demeanor.
  • Notre Dame's reconstruction is complex. Expect scaffolding and construction. Be patient and respect the workers restoring this iconic cathedral.

The Notre Dame today

Five years after the devastating fire on April 15, 2019, the major restoration challenges of Paris' Notre-Dame Cathedral have been successfully tackled. The cathedral is on schedule to reopen on December 8, 2024. Employing traditional methods and materials, the reconstruction endeavors to recapture the cathedral's former grandeur. While the renovation is underway, you can still appreciate the exterior and delve into its history at the adjacent archaeological crypt.

Although access to the square is currently restricted, you can still view the crypt from a distance. Your guide will then take you to the entrance of the crypt, where, after a guided tour, you'll be able to explore beneath Notre Dame. You'll enjoy a self-guided tour of the very foundations of Île de la Cité, the original heart of Paris.

The fire inflicted substantial damage, affecting the roof, spire, and stained glass windows. A dedicated team of architects, engineers, and artisans leads the meticulous reconstruction. With a projected cost exceeding €1 billion, funding relies on global donations. Recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Notre Dame embodies architectural brilliance, and its restoration serves as a powerful symbol of resilience and hope for Paris and France.

Frequently Asked Questions about Notre Dame

What is Notre Dame?

Notre Dame is a medieval Catholic cathedral located in the heart of Paris, France.

What can I see at Notre Dame?

Before it's closure in 2019, owing to a fire, you could see the iconic Gothic architecture and intricate stained glass windows at Notre Dame.

Are Notre Dame tour tickets available online now?

While you cannot visit the cathedral itself due to its closure, you can purchase Notre Dame exhibition tickets online for an enriching experience.

How do I get to Notre Dame?

You can get to Notre Dame by public transport, including the bus, train, or metro.

Is Notre Dame Cathedral open to the public?

No, Notre Dame Cathedral is not open to the public at this time. The cathedral is still under restoration after the fire in 2019. The restoration is expected to be completed in 2024, but there is no guarantee that the cathedral will be open to the public by then.

Can I still see Notre Dame Cathedral from the outside?

Yes, you can still see Notre Dame Cathedral from the outside. The cathedral is located in the heart of Paris, and it is easily accessible by foot or by public transportation.

What is the status of the restoration of Notre Dame Cathedral?

The restoration of Notre Dame Cathedral is ongoing. The main goal of the restoration is to rebuild the roof and spire of the cathedral. The restoration is expected to be completed in 2024.