Sacré-Coeur- The Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris

Sacré-Coeur- The Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris

This famous Roman-Byzantine style white-domed catholic church is situated on the top of the Montmartre hill is the highest point in the city of Paris.  Its construction began in 1875 (designed by Paul Abadie) and completed in 1914 but was consecrated only after the end of World War I.

The basilica is built of a special kind of limestone called Travertine deposited by mineral springs. The unique chemical properties of the stone which give out a substance called calcite upon reaction with rainwater acts as a bleach and helps to withstand pollution, keeping the white colour of the basilica.


35 Rue du Chevalier de la Barre, 75018 Paris, France

How To Reach Sacre-Coeur

Metro (subway) lines to take: line 2 (M2) and get down at Anvers OR line 12 (M12) and get off at station Abbesses. You have to walk for a few minutes from either of the above metro stations to get to the bottom of Montmartre. From the bottom of the hill, you can either climb the steps or take the small funicular train which is covered by a metro ticket.

Sacre Coeur opening times

Opening times: Basilica is open for prayer and sightseeing every day from 6am till 10:30pm (free entry)

Dome opening times: 08:30 am -8pm (May-September)

09:00am-5pm (October- April)

Opening times may vary according to weather conditions and you have to purchase a ticket. The entrance to the dome is outside of the basilica on the left side.

(Remember! you have to climb 234 spiral steps!! but if you can make it, you will get a spectacular panoramic view of Paris)

Things to remember:

  • Wear sensible shoes!! a lot of walking and a lot of steps to climb. Also, it can be very cold on the top of the hill during winter.
  • There is an app you can download called TUPUY which gives a free audio tour for the basilica but you have to create an account and log in to get it.
  • Dress appropriately and keep silence as there are ongoing mass and adoration throughout the day. Don’t forget to light a candle and say a prayer 🙂
  • After visiting the church, pause for a few minutes, sit down at the forecourt of the basilica and enjoy the wonderful view of Paris. (If you are visiting the dome, it is said that you get to see up to 30km of the surroundings on a clear day!!)
  • It is a very crowded place, Beware of the pick-pocketers and souvenir sellers!!
  • Not many people know that there is also another historic church on the Montmartre hill called ‘The Church of Saint Peter of Montmartre’. Founded by Saint-Denis and dated back to the third century by the archaeologists, this is one of the oldest surviving churches in Paris. It is believed that Saint Ignatius Loyola made vows to establish the Jesuit order of priests here in 1534. This church was rebuilt in the 19th century and is almost not known since the popularity of Sacre-Coeur but if you are interested and have time in your hand, why not visit this hidden gem of history?
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  • Reply Lauren Cocking February 1, 2017 at 3:24 pm

    I love the layout of this post, with all the tips and tricks to know if you want to visit! 🙂 Awesome

    • Reply JJ February 1, 2017 at 4:15 pm

      thank you gal 🙂

  • Reply Elisamartinez February 1, 2017 at 3:40 pm

    Cannot belive i miss this! Paris is such a HUGE country! I zigzagged everywhere. Totally going back there and stay longer. I was only there for a day and half.

    • Reply JJ February 1, 2017 at 4:14 pm

      It can get really crowded i agree. Happy travelling 🙂

  • Reply Jacky February 1, 2017 at 3:54 pm

    Oh how beautiful your pictures are! If course it’s a must see if I ever muster up the courage to go to Paris and battle the crowds 😀 All very useful information! I’ll definitely check out the Church of Saint Peter!


    • Reply JJ February 1, 2017 at 4:13 pm

      Thank you 🙂

  • Reply Daisy February 1, 2017 at 5:58 pm

    I miss paris! Didn’t love living there during the winter though to be honest, but the whole city is radiant when the sun’s out

    • Reply JJ February 1, 2017 at 6:39 pm

      We visited the city towards the end of winter. it was cold but less tourists :).

  • Reply Ivy February 1, 2017 at 6:04 pm

    Montmartre is one favourite neighbourhood in Paris ! We’re not religious and usually shy away from churches but we really enjoyed Sacre Coeur when we were there. There was a guy playing a harp on our visit on the steps in front of the basilica, making the visit that much better

    • Reply JJ February 1, 2017 at 6:37 pm

      Yes, the view from here is a must see 🙂

  • Reply Rebecca February 1, 2017 at 10:42 pm

    Lovely post! I’ve been to Paris twice and want to go back a third time just to see Sacré-Coeur. Great post full of lots of tips that will def help my visit!
    R x

    • Reply JJ February 2, 2017 at 7:59 am

      Thank you, I am glad it is helpful:)
      Happy Travelling..x

  • Reply Emma February 1, 2017 at 10:52 pm

    I lived in Paris for a year and Montmatre was one of my favourite areas. I often used o go to Sacre Coeur and light a candle – it’s such a peaceful place. And it has the best view pf the whole of Paris from the top of the hill! Very jealous of your trip – it’s been a few years since I’ve spent time there!

    • Reply JJ February 2, 2017 at 8:01 am

      I loved lighting a candle and sitting quietly in one of those chapels is a beautiful place..

  • Reply Maegan White February 1, 2017 at 11:21 pm

    What a great layout of tips and pictures at the bottom! We were just here May 2016 and it was A LOT OF CLIMBING! We were overloaded by the selfie stick folks but made it out unscathed lol. Cheers!

    • Reply JJ February 2, 2017 at 8:03 am

      Thank you Megan:).When we visited it was keychain folks! haha

  • Reply Thirty30Courtney February 2, 2017 at 4:11 am

    I stayed in a hostel right by the Sacre Coeur for my first night in Paris and I can only wish that I had taken more pictures of it by itself. It was such a dope experience to be able to see it during the day and at night once things calmed down. I visited the area even after I switched hostels.

    • Reply JJ February 2, 2017 at 8:05 am

      I bet nightview is fantastic, totally different experience from day time..!

  • Reply Anjali February 2, 2017 at 2:02 pm

    Your photos are GORGEOUS!!! They make me feel like I’m there. And I hadn’t had it on my list, but now it is!

    • Reply JJ February 2, 2017 at 4:15 pm

      Thank you Anjali,its well worth the visit. You will like it:)

  • Reply Agness of Fit Travelling February 10, 2017 at 1:38 am

    Sacré-Coeur looks incredible, it is definitely worth a visit! The photos are stunning, Jain!

    • Reply Jain February 10, 2017 at 3:07 pm

      thank you Agness 🙂

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