Sainte Chapelle

Address: 4 bouldevard du Palais, Paris, 75001, France
Telephone: 01 53 40 60 80

- Mid-range


A jewel of High Gothic architecture with fabulous stained glass.

Built by Louis IX or Saint Louis in just six years between 1242 and 1248 to house the Crown of Thorns and other holy relics he had acquired on crusade, the double decker Sainte Chapelle is an intimate special place, all the more so in that you cannot see it from the street but it is hidden within the Palais de Justice law courts complex. The lower chapel is dark and atmospheric with star-painted vaulting and an ancient mural of the Annunciation. In contrast, the upper chapel, once reserved for the royal family, is tall and dappled in colour from its richly coloured stained glass windows, with minuscule figures depicting 1113 scenes from the Old Testament and the Crucifixion.

Value for money

Price advice

8 euros; free all under 18s, EU nationals under 26.

Expert tips

As the chapel is inside the Palais de Justice complex be prepared for security checks and queues and bring ID.

There are classical concerts most evenings between mid-March and mid-November. Buy tickets on the day at the chapel (10am-5pm) or on 01 44 07 12 38.

You can buy a ticket twinned with the Conciergerie just up the street – a remnant of the medieval palace with two massive vaulted Gothic halls and later a prison during the Revolution.

Try to come on a sunny day to see the stained glass at its best.

Recommended for

  • Culture vultures
  • First-time travellers
  • Mature travellers
  • Seasoned travellers
  • Education
  • Romance
  • Sightseeing
  • History