The Ile de la Cité
Return to the roots
Hustle and bustle now prevails on the Ile de la Cité and it was the same from the beginning of our era. Paris, and Lutetia before, developed from this place, centre of the royal, judicial and spiritual power of the city.
Of course, the environment has changed in the course of time. Yet, the contemporaries of Henry IV in the 16th century have crossed the Seine by the same Pont-Neuf that you will take.
In the 13th century, Saint-Louis built the Sainte-Chapelle. Come and admire it ; a part of its decoration, particularly the stained-glass windows, are original !
A bit earlier, at the beginning of the 11th century, Notre-Dame de Paris began to be built. Saint-Louis, Philippe le Bel, Marie Stuart, Henry IV, Bossuet and Napoleon Bonaparte, among other great historical persons, trod upon the cathedral cobblestones. Why not you ?
But the oldest vestiges date back to the Antiquity and they are waiting for you in the archeological crypt of Notre-Dame de Paris parvis.
From the Pont-Neuf to Notre-Dame de Paris, the places have resisted invasions, more recent wars and exceptional bad weather. They also witnessed difficult times and historical moments. There are many emotions throughout this rich tour, such as sadness, fear, nostalgia but mainly amazement, astonishment, amusement... With no tools but you eyes and your legs, go back in time, on the lookout for the vestiges left by our distant forefathers for our great pleasure.
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Starting point :
le Pont-neuf (Pont-neuf station, underground line 7 or bus ligne 75).
the whole day, including the visit of the Conciergerie, Sainte-Chapelle and Notre-Dame de Paris.
- Public : All
- Means of transport : By foot
Access for persons with reduced mobility :
for a part of the tour only.
The Conciergerie: access by the n° 2 Boulevard du Palais. The building is not accessible for person in a wheelchair. Persons with reduced mobility have to be accompanied by a valid person.
The Sainte-Chapelle: access by the n° 4 Boulevard du Palais. Person in a wheelchair have to be accompanied by a valid person.
Notre-Dame de Paris: towers non accessibles (no lift).
- Total distance : 3 km
don't forget to take your binoculars.