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Sacre Coeur Basilica in Paris, France: Tours & Tips

Sacre-Coeur Basilica, officially known as the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris, is situated atop the Montmartre Hill in Paris, France. Get Directions!

As one of Paris’ prominent landmarks, it attracts more than ten million visitors annually.

Visitors are drawn to the basilica’s stunning design and artwork, including the largest mosaic in France.

The Sacre-Coeur Basilica’s well-known dome is the second highest point in Paris, reaching upto 213 metres (700 feet) high.

It offers divine views of Paris, making it a popular spot for sightseeing and photography.

Additionally, Sacre-Coeur Basilica conducts cultural events, concerts, and exhibitions and is a prime spot to experience the vibrant cultural scene of Paris.

Snapshot

Opening Hours: Daily, 6 am to 10.30 pm

Last Entry: 10 pm

Time Needed: Approximately 1 to 2 hours

Location: Atop Montmartre Hill, one of the highest points in Paris.

Address: Basilique du Sacré-Cœur, 35 Rue du Chevalier de la Barre, 75018 Paris, France. Get Directions!

📍Nearest Metro Station: Anvers (Line 2) or Abbesses (Line 12).

About Sacre-Coeur Basilica

Designed by architect Paul Abadie, Sacre-Coeur Basilica was constructed in 1914 but its completion was delayed until 1919 due to World War I.

It was named  “Sacré-Cœur,” which translates to “Sacred Heart,” referring to the Catholic devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

The basilica’s design blends Romano-Byzantine and medieval architectural styles, featuring the white travertine stone façade and a prominent dome.

What’s interesting about the Sacre-Coeur Basilica is that public donations funded its construction entirely.

Fun Fact! The white travertine stone used in the construction of Sacre-Coeur Basilica self-cleans when it rains, giving it its distinctive luminous appearance.

Cultural Significance of Sacre-Coeur Basilica

The Sacre-Coeur Basilica is a central hub for festivities and religious processions in Paris.

Since 1885, it has been the site of uninterrupted silent prayer sessions.

For those seeking a unique experience, visitors can spend a night in the dormitory by joining the prayer chain.

Additionally, Montmartre hosts the annual Fête des Vendanges, a lively wine harvest festival, adding to the basilica’s allure. Check activities to do in Montmartre.

Visitors can also witness captivating concerts and choir performances within the basilica, adding to its cultural vibrancy.

What to Expect Inside Sacre-Coeur Basilica

What to Expect Inside Sacre-Coeur Basilica
Image: Saish Rane on Unsplash

You’ll be stunned by the Basilica of Sacre-Coeur’s interior, with high ceilings, colorful mosaics, and intricate stained glass windows.

Visitors admire the mosaics and artwork depicting religious scenes and figures, showcasing incredible craftsmanship.

At the center of the basilica is the main altar, which is adorned with ornate decorations and religious symbols.

You can also climb the 300 steps of the basilica to reach the dome, which offers incredible city views of Paris, rewarding visitors with vistas of prominent landmarks.

Religious services, masses or prayers add to the spiritual ambiance. Participate in these services for peace.

Browse through the basilica’s gift shop to find souvenirs and religious mementos to commemorate your visit.

Sacre-Coeur Basilica Ticket Options

Entry to the Sacré-Cœur Basilica is open to all without an admission fee.

However, certain activities and areas within the basilica require separate tickets for access.

You can choose the Sacre-Coeur audio tour for self-exploration, starting at just €4.

You can also opt for a guided tour led by knowledgeable guides who can help you tour the entire basilica without missing out on any section.

Here are the most recommended Sacre-Coeur Basilica ticket options:

Sacré-Coeur Guided Walking Tour

Sacré-Coeur Guided Walking Tour
Image: Getyourguide.com

This 1.5-hour tour, led by an English-speaking expert guide, takes you through Montmartre and Sacré-Cœur in Paris.

Next, visit Moulin Rouge and Café des 2 Moulins, well known from the movie “Amélie.”

You can easily plan your Montmartre adventure with free cancellation options and the ability to pay later.

The ticket is ideal for friends and families, especially those fascinated by cinematic landmarks and panoramic city views.

Ticket Price of Sacre-Coeur Basilica guided tour:

  • Adults (12 years & above): €36
  • Children (4 to 11 years):€31
  • Infants ( Below 4 years): Free

Paris City Pass for 2, 4, or 6 Days

Paris City Pass for 2, 4, or 6 Days
Image: Getyourguide.com

Access over 85 top attractions, including the iconic Sacré-Cœur Basilica, with a convenient all-inclusive Paris city pass.

Enjoy priority access to popular sites like the Louvre, D’Orsay Museum, and Sacré-Cœur, saving time and hassle.

Choose between 2, 3, 4, or 6-day passes and tailor your itinerary to explore at your own pace.

Plus, save over 50% compared to purchasing individual tickets, making the pass a cost-effective choice for experiencing the best of Paris.

This city pass is perfect for families, friends, or anyone traveling in a group who wants to explore more within a limited time.

Paris City Pass Prices:

  • Adults (18 years and above): €144
  • Children (2 to 17 years):€69
  • Infants ( Below 2 years): Free

Solve puzzles, unlock mysteries, and discover hidden treasures with the exclusive Escape game inside the Sacré-Coeur!
It’s a thrilling escapade led by expert guides that takes you through Parisian history and culture. 
Plus, capture your victorious moments with complimentary photos by your game master.

Where to Buy Sacre-Coeur Basilica Tickets?

You can purchase tickets for the Sacré-Cœur Basilica online or from offline ticket booths.

However, buying tickets online is easier because you can book them from the comfort of your home, with instant confirmation and e-ticket delivery.

Avoid long ticket queues, choose your preferred time slots, and get special discounts.

Plus, it’s safer because you don’t have to worry about losing printed on-paper tickets.

Sacre-Coeur Basilica Hours:

The Sacre-Coeur Basilica is open throughout the year from 6 am to 10 pm.

However, there are a few exceptions:

  • Sacre Coeur Basilica closes late on major religious holidays such as Easter Vigil and the day before Easter.
  • On the first Thursday of each month, there is a Holy Hour prayer from 11 pm to midnight, which can extend the closing time.

Dome Schedule:

MonthsOpening Hours
June to September9 am to 8.30 pm.
October to February10 am to 5.30 pm.
March to April9.30 am to 7 pm.

How Long to Spend in Sacre-Coeur Basilica

Allocate 1.5 to 2 hours for a fulfilling visit to Sacré-Cœur Basilica.

Spend 30 minutes to an hour exploring its interior and admiring its architecture and artwork.

Consider an extra 30 minutes for climbing the dome, offering stunning views of Paris City.

Those seeking spiritual solace can devote additional time to prayer or reflection.

You can also keep additional time for browsing the gift shop or enjoying the surrounding Montmartre neighborhood.

Best Time to Visit Sacre-Coeur Basilica

Visit Sacre-Coeur Basilica in the early morning or late evening, especially on weekdays, to avoid crowds.

Arriving shortly after the basilica opens at 6 am allows for a peaceful exploration of its interior and will be like a private tour.

You also get a chance to witness the sunrise over Paris from the surrounding hill of Montmartre. 

Alternatively, visiting in the evening, closer to closing time at 10.30 pm, offers a quieter experience and a chance to admire the city lights twinkling below.

Special religious celebrations and events held at Sacre-Coeur Basilica, such as Easter or Christmas, allow you to witness unique ceremonies and traditions, making it the perfect time for a visit.

Best Season to visit Paris’s Sacre-Coeur Basilica:

Spring and fall offer pleasant weather for exploring Sacre-Coeur Basilica and enjoying blooming views of Paris from Montmartre Hill.

Summer months experience higher tourist traffic, so plan your visit accordingly to avoid crowds.

How to Reach Sacre-Coeur Basilica in Paris

 Anvers station
Image: Commons.wikimedia.org

The Sacré-Cœur Basilica is located at the top of the Montmartre Hill in Paris, France.

The exact address is

Basilique du Sacré-Cœur

35 Rue du Chevalier de la Barre

75018 Paris, France.

Get Directions!

Sacre-Coeur Basilica is easily accessible by various means of transportation. Let’s take a look:

By Metro:

Take Metro Line 2 to Anvers station or Line 12 to Abbesses station, both of which are located within walking distance of Sacre-Coeur Basilica.

By Bus:

Several bus routes stop near Sacre-Coeur Basilica, providing convenient access from different parts of Paris. 

Alternatively, board the Montmartrobus from various points in Montmartre for direct access to Sacré-Cœur.

By Taxi:

Hail a taxi or use ride-sharing services to reach Sacre-Coeur Basilica directly, especially if traveling with luggage or mobility concerns.

By Walking:

Enjoy a scenic stroll uphill from the bottom of the hill to the basilica.

Choose from several routes, passing by the nearby neighborhoods, such as Pigalle or Montmartre and offering picturesque views along the way.

Insider Tips for Sacre-Coeur Basilica

Make the most of your visit to Sacre-Coeur Basilica with these insider tips:

  • Visit during Off-Peak Hours: Go early in the morning or late in the evening to avoid crowds.
  • Dress Respectfully: Cover your shoulders and knees as a sign of respect.
  • Explore Montmartre: Take time to wander the charming streets nearby. Buy tickets.
  • Climb the Dome: Don’t miss the panoramic views from the top.
  • Consider Guided Tours: The guided tours offer insights into the basilica’s history.
  • Respect No-Photography Zones: Maintain the solemn atmosphere inside.
  • Enjoy Surrounding Attractions: Check out nearby landmarks like Place du Tertre.

Dress Code in Sacre-Coeur Basilica

Visitors are expected to dress modestly and appropriately during their visit.

Both men and women must ensure that their shoulders and knees are covered. Sleeveless tops, tank tops, and shorts are not permitted.

Clothing that is overly revealing or provocative, such as low-cut tops, mini-skirts, and clothing with offensive slogans or graphics, should be avoided.

Hats and head coverings should be removed before entering the basilica as a sign of respect.

While there is no specific restriction on footwear, it’s advisable to wear comfortable shoes suitable for walking, especially if you plan to climb the dome.

Read more.

Nearby Attractions to Sacre-Coeur Basilica

Once you are done exploring Sacré-Cœur Basilica in Paris, visitors can explore various attractions in the Montmartre neighborhood.

Here’s a list of some must-visit landmarks.

Attraction NameSpecialtyDistance from Basilica
Wall of “I Love You”Phrase “I love you” in 300 languages0.32 km (0.2 miles)
Place du TertreArtists painting portraits0.48 km (0.3 miles)
Dalí ParisMuseum showcasing Salvador Dalí’s works0.48 km (0.3 miles)
Moulin RougeIconic cabaret with extravagant shows0.64 km (0.4 miles)
Montmartre VineyardHistoric vineyard with wine tastings0.80 km (0.5 miles)
Montmartre CemeteryFinal resting place of notable figures0.97 km (0.6 miles)

FAQs

Why is Sacré Coeur in Paris famous?

Sacré-Cœur Basilica in Paris is famous for its stunning architectural design, commanding location atop Montmartre hill, and cultural significance.

It attracts more than 10 million visitors annually who come to admire its beauty, explore its interior and enjoy panoramic views of Paris from its dome.

What is inside Sacré Coeur?

Inside Sacré-Cœur Basilica, visitors can expect to find a breathtaking interior featuring high ceilings, colorful mosaics, intricate stained glass windows, and ornate decorations.

The main altar, adorned with religious symbols, serves as the focal point of the basilica. Visitors can admire the artwork depicting religious scenes and figures.

Additionally, visitors can climb 300 steps to reach the dome for stunning views of Paris.

Is the Sacré Coeur Church very famous?

Yes, Sacré-Cœur Basilica, also known as the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris, is highly famous and recognized as one of the popular landmarks of Paris.

Its distinctive white domes and commanding position atop Montmartre Hill make it a prominent feature of the Parisian skyline.

It holds cultural and religious significance and is visited by millions of tourists and pilgrims worldwide yearly.

How much does Sacré Coeur cost?

Entry to Sacré-Cœur Basilica is free for all visitors.

However, certain activities and areas within the Basilica require a ticket in the form of guided tours or special access tickets.

The ticket prices range from € 3 to € 180 depending on the type of experience or tour chosen. Check out your options.

Do you need tickets for Sacré-Cœur Basilica?

Entry to Sacré-Cœur Basilica itself is free and open to the public.

However, certain activities within the Basilica complex may require tickets.

Visitors can choose from guided tours to city passes, including a complimentary Basilica visit.

What day is Sacré Coeur closed?

Sacré-Cœur Basilica is open every day of the year, including weekends and holidays.
Visitors should note that the basilica may close later on major religious holidays, such as Easter Vigil, or for special events or ceremonies.

It’s advisable to check the schedule in advance, especially if planning a visit during holidays or specific occasions.

How much time do you need at Sacré Coeur?

To fully explore Sacré-Cœur Basilica, including admiring its interior, climbing to the dome for panoramic views, and possibly attending religious services, plan to spend approximately 1.5 to 2 hours.
This allows enough time to appreciate the basilica’s beauty and soak in its spiritual ambiance without feeling rushed.

Is Sacré Coeur free?

Yes, entry to Sacré-Cœur Basilica is free for all visitors.

You can see this Parisian landmark’s stunning architecture and peaceful ambiance at no cost. 
Keep in mind that while entry to the basilica itself is free, there may be charges for additional experiences or services offered onsite. 

How much does it cost to climb Sacré Coeur?

The cost to climb to the top of Sacré-Cœur Basilica’s dome may vary depending on the ticket option chosen and whether it includes access to other areas or experiences.

Visitors interested in climbing the dome can purchase tickets either as part of a guided tour package or separately.

The guided tours cost €36 for adults aged 12 years and above, while children aged 4 to 11 years can join for €31, and infants below 4 years can participate for free.

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