Paris - Sainte Chapelle

This gem is often overlooked as people head straight to the other main icons that Paris has to offer.

The Sainte-Chapelle is Gothic style chapel on the Île de la Cité in Paris. Built in 1248, it has one of the most extensive 13th century stained glass collections anywhere in the world. There is around 600 square metres of stained glass.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Entry to the church is through the lower chapel.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

There is so much to see here. The blue and gold ceiling decorated with fleur-de-lys is a real standout.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

You will also see the statue of King Louis IX who masterminded the construction of St Chapelle.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Zoom in on the colourful artefacts.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Don’t forget that very old floor that you are walking on.

Don’t forget that very old floor that you are walking on.

You can also see the Great Shrine which is where the 22 relics of the Passion of Christ were once kept. Love those idols that surround this.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Then climb the narrow stairs to the upper chapel.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Step inside where you will be taken aback by the amount of stained glass. Stop for a moment to take it all in. For me it was an overwhelming sight.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

No photograph can really do justice to what you are seeing here. It is difficult to get the “full picture”.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

The light is not great for amateur photography. I just wandered around and took photos from different angles. While the definition of the actual biblical scenes depicted in the windows was not so clear in my photos, the darkness and colour of these windows gave it the ambiance I was hoping for.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

The main altar is illuminated by a full wall of 15 stained glass windows. Magnificent. Some of the originals of these windows date back to the 13th century.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

The Rose Window, featuring 87 petals was installed in the 15th century completes the picture of so many windows.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

The upper chapel features sculptures of the twelve apostles. Of these Pillars of the Church, only six are originals.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Take photos of the walls, and anything else that catches your eye. Another beautiful ceiling with its golden stars symbolising the heavens complements the coloured glass.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Not much is said about the exterior of this royal chapel.  It is surrounded by buildings such as the Conciergerie and Palais de Justice.  For this reason, you cannot really get a full picture of the church.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

Take a walk around, see the many windows, look up to the spire and the gargoyles.

Paris - Sainte Chapelle

A truly unforgettable experience and one I would truly recommend.

 

OTHER CHURCHES AND CATHEDRALS OF PARIS

Notre Dame is is a medieval Catholic cathedral in the centre of Paris. It is considered to be one of the finest examples of French Gothic architecture. Construction began in 1163 and finally opened in 1345. Over the centuries, the church has been added to, almost destroyed during the French Revolution, renovated and most recently significantly damaged by fire in 2019.

Paris - Notre Dame Cathedral

Visit in front of the church, walk around it, view from across the Seine, go inside and climb the tower to see the gargoyles – Notre Dame has it all and its free to enter (except for the tower visit).

Paris - Notre Dame Cathedral

For more on Notre Dame, click here…

Sacre Coeur Basilica

Located on top of the hill at Montmartre, Sacré-Cœur was built in 1919 and it is a Romano-Byzantine styled Catholic church. The spacious green area in front of the church is a nice location for picnic and to admire the spectacular city view of Paris.

Paris - Sacre Coeur

We did take a look inside the Sacre Coeur but photography was not allowed. The building itself was majestic so took photos from different angles.

Paris - Sacre Coeur

Eglise De La Madeleine

Built in Neo-Classical style, it is one of the best-preserved of all Roman temples.

Paris - Eglise de la Madeleine

Its fifty-two Corinthian columns, each 20 metres high, are carried around the entire building.

Paris - Eglise de la Madeleine

The church’s bronze doors bear reliefs representing the Ten Commandments.

Paris - Eglise de la Madeleine

Inside the church is lavishly gilded.

Paris - Eglise de la Madeleine

Above the high altar, stands a statue depicting St Mary Magdalene being lifted up by angels.

Paris - Eglise de la Madeleine

Paris - Eglise de la Madeleine

Eglise Saint Eustache

Built between 1532 and 1632, this church is situated near the medieval marketplace of Les Halles.

Paris - Eglise Saint Eustache

Paris - Eglise Saint Eustache

While its structure is Gothic, the interior is Renaissance and Classical.

Paris - Elise Saint Eustache

Paris - Eglise Saint Eustache

The side chapels were so colourful.

Paris - Eglise Saint Eustache

Paris - Eglise Saint Eustache

Paris - Eglise Saint Eustache

The Chapel of the Virgin was built in 1640 and restored in 1804. It is highlighted by three major paintings by painter Thomas Couture.

Paris - Eglise Saint Eustache

The church also has some truly magnificent stained glass windows including a rose window.

Paris - Eglise Saint Eustache

Paris - Eglise Saint Eustache

Paris - Eglise Saint Eustache

Church Saint-Jean-de-Montmartre

Situated at the foot of Montmartre, this church was the first example of reinforced concrete in church construction.

Paris - Saint-Jean de Montmartre

Built in 1904, the brick and ceramic tile-faced structure exhibits features of Art Nouveau design.

Paris - Saint-Jean de Montmartre

Paris - Saint-Jean de Montmartre

Paris - Saint-Jean de Montmartre

Another beautiful stained-glass window.

Paris - Saint-Jean de Montmartre

Of course there are literally hundreds of churches in Paris. These are just some of the ones we came across in our wanderings of Paris.

IF YOU ENJOYED THIS POST, CHECK OUT MORE ON PARIS

Paris – Notre Dame – an iconic French Masterpiece

The Louvre – more than just a museum

The Romance of Paris

Wandering the streets of Paris

Paris and its beautiful bridges

Paris – The history and opulence of Les Invalides

Opera Garnier – A must see Paris gem