Religious sites in France

Église Saint-Pierre

After the Roman town of Burdigala (current Bordeaux) ceased to exist, the inhabitants moved away from the river, and the new city centre became what is now the Saint-Pierre district. The first church was built on the premises of the former port in the Middle Ages.  The current church dates from the 14th and 15th centuries and was built on the site of ancient Gallo-Roman port. The Flamboyant style appearance survived from ...
Founded: 14th century | Location: Bordeaux, France

Church of the Jacobins

The Church of the Jacobins is a large brick building whose construction started in 1230, and whose architecture influenced the development of the southern Gothic style. The relics of Thomas Aquinas are housed there. In the two centuries following the dissolution of the Dominican Order at the time of the French Revolution it served various different purposes before undergoing major restoration in the 20th century. In the e ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Toulouse, France

St. Thomas Church

The church of St. Thomas is the main Lutheran church of the city since its Cathedral became Catholic again after the annexation of the town by France in 1681. The site on which the current church stands was used as a place of worship under the patronage of Thomas the Apostle as early as the sixth century. In the ninth century, Bishop Adelochus established a magnificent church with adjoining school, however both burned dow ...
Founded: 1196 | Location: Strasbourg, France

Church of Saint-Maclou

The Church of Saint-Maclou is considered one of the best examples of the Flamboyant style of Gothic architecture in France. Saint-Maclou, along with Rouen Cathedral, the Palais de Justice (also Flamboyant), and the Church of St. Ouen, form a famous ensemble of significant Gothic buildings in Rouen. The Construction on Saint-Maclou began sometime after 1432; it was to replace an existing parish church that had suffered fr ...
Founded: c. 1432 | Location: Rouen, France

Saint-Nizier Church

The Church of Saint-Nizier name refers to Nicetius of Lyon, a bishop of the city during the 6th century. The first religious building on the site of the present church was a Roman monument, perhaps a temple of Attis, whose worship was probably the cause of the Christian persecution in Lyon from 177. In the 5th century, according to tradition, Eucherius of Lyon, 19th bishop of Lyon, built on the ruins of the building a bas ...
Founded: 14th century | Location: Lyon, France

Notre-Dame la Grande

The west front of Notre-Dame la Grande church adorned with statuary is recognised as a masterpiece of Romanesque religious art. The district was already populated in Roman times. The ancient vestiges of a brick and rectangular stone construction can be located near the gutter on the northern wall of the current church. The church is mentioned in the 10th century, referring to the Romanesque church of the same name. Its p ...
Founded: 11th century | Location: Poitiers, France

Toulouse Cathedral

The exact date of the original Toulouse Cathedral is unknown; the first mention of a church building on that site is found in a charter of 844. In 1073 the bishop of Toulouse commenced work on a more elaborate structure, followed by additional construction in the 13th century. The irregular west front exists because the cathedral consists of two incomplete churches, the first dating from the early 13th century, which inc ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Toulouse, France

Saint-Maurice Church

The Église Saint-Maurice is a church on rue de Paris, in the historic centre of Lille, northern France. Its construction began at the end of the 14th century and completed at the end of the 19th century, and it was extended over more than four centuries. A hall church in the Gothic style, it was made a monument historique in 1914.
Founded: 14th century | Location: Lille, France

Church of Saint-Pierre

The Church of Saint-Pierre (Église Saint-Pierre) was built in the early 13th and the construction continued until the 16th century. The spire was destroyed in 1944, and has since been rebuilt. The eastern apse of the church was built by Hector Sohier between 1518 and 1545. The interior choir and the exterior apse display an architecture that embodies the transition from Gothic to Renaissance. Until around the mid 19th c ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Caen, France

Senlis Cathedral

Senlis Cathedral was built, for the most part, during the third quarter of the 12th century, when the royal city of Senlis was experiencing a true 'golden age'. It was profoundly renovated in the 13th and 16th centuries. With its portal of the crowning of the Virgin (12th century), its monumental 78 meter south tower (13th century) and transept facades all masterpieces of the high and late Gothic, Notre Dame de ...
Founded: 1153 | Location: Senlis, France

Église Sainte-Croix

The Church of the Holy Cross (Église Sainte-Croix) was formerly the church of a Benedictine abbey founded in the 7th century, and was built in the late 11th-early 12th centuries. The façade is in the Romanesque architectural style. The church has a nave and four aisles, a transept with apses on each arm, and a polygonal apse. The nave is 39 m long, while the apse is 15.30 m high. Its organ dates from the 18th ce ...
Founded: 11th century | Location: Bordeaux, France

St. Epvre Basilica

Built in the 19th century in gothic revival style by Prosper Morey, Saint-Epvre’s Basilica is decorated with stained glass and wood panelling and was in-part made in Bavaria. It was richly endowed by Napoleon III, Emperor Franz-Joseph, Ludwig II of Bavaria and Pope Pius who donated the beautiful stone paving in the choir that came from the Appian Way. The market square and general trading centre in the Middle Ages, ...
Founded: 1864-1874 | Location: Nancy, France

Abbey of Saint-Étienne

The Abbey of Saint-Etienne, also known as Abbaye aux Hommes ('Men"s Abbey'), is a former monastery dedicated to Saint Stephen (Saint Étienne). It is considered, along with the neighbouring Abbaye aux Dames ('Ladies" Abbey'), to be one of the most notable Romanesque buildings in Normandy. Like all the major abbeys in Normandy, it was Benedictine. Lanfranc, before being an Archbishop of Canterbury, was abbot of Saint-Etie ...
Founded: 1067 | Location: Caen, France

Old St. Peter's Church

The Church of Old Saint Peter"s in Strasbourg is first mentioned in 1130. On 22 May 1398 the Chapter of the Abbey of Honau, which had been in Rhinau since 1290, moved to Old St Peter"s because of flooding in Rhinau. The Chapter stayed there until 1529, conducting its services in the choir, while the parish occupied the nave. When the Catholic rite was restored in 1683, the Chapter returned to the Church and stay ...
Founded: 12th century | Location: Strasbourg, France

Vauclair Abbey Ruins

Vauclair Abbey was a Cistercian monastery located in what is now the commune of Bouconville-Vauclair. The monastery was built about 15 kilometers to the south of Laon in an east-west stretch of the Ailette river valley at the foot of the northern side of the Chemin des Dames, on a site already occupied by a church, in the present commune of Bouconville-Vauclair. The site was ceded to Bernard with all its rights and ...
Founded: 1134 | Location: Bouconville-Vauclair, France

Notre Dame du Haut

The chapel of Notre Dame du Haut in Ronchamp is one of the finest examples of the architecture of Franco-Swiss architect Le Corbusier and one of the most important examples of 20th century religious architecture. It was built between 1953 and 1955. The chapel is a working religious building and attracts 80,000 visitors each year. Notre Dame du Haut is commonly thought of as a more extreme design of Le Corbusier’s l ...
Founded: 1953-1955 | Location: Ronchamp, France

Saint-Pierre-le-Jeune Protestant Church

The Saint-Pierre-le-Jeune Protestant Church is one of the most important church buildings in Strasbourg. The church has been Lutheran since 1524 and its congregation forms part of the Protestant Church of Augsburg Confession of Alsace and Lorraine. The oldest part of the church is the small lower church used as a burial crypt, which is the remains of a Columban church erected in the 7th century. Three of the four arched ...
Founded: 11th century | Location: Strasbourg, France

Saint-Éloi Church

The original Church of Saint-Éloi from the mid-15th century had the shape of a Latin cross. It was consecrated around 1443. It is said to have been erected by prime contractors from Ghent on the site of St. John"s Hospice. In 1558, the French troops led by Maréchal de Thermes invaded the city and burnt the church. Only the tower survived. The re-construction of the church started in 1559 under the supervision of p ...
Founded: 1559-1567 | Location: Dunkerque, France

Church of Saint-François-des-Cordeliers

The Church of Saint-François-des-Cordeliers was constructed as part of a monastery under Duke René II of Lorraine following the Battle of Nancy, next to the Palace of the Dukes of Lorraine. It was consecrated in 1487. The monastery was Franciscan and the French name term cordelier refers to the simple rope belts the monks would tie their cassocks around. Since the monastery was under the patronage of the dukes, the c ...
Founded: 1487 | Location: Nancy, France

Saint-Michel Basilica

Saint-Michel Basilica is a Baroque jewel with its incredible exterior, the bell-tower, the coloured cobbles of the parvis arranged to form the Grimaldi’s coat of arms and the “rampes Saint-Michel” (a series of flights of stairs). The construction of the Basilica begun in 1640 under the reign of Honoré II, but took several centuries to be completed. The façade was then renovated in the 19th Century adding typical ...
Founded: 1640 | Location: Menton, France

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Petersberg Citadel

The Petersberg Citadel is one of the largest extant early-modern citadels in Europe and covers the whole north-western part of the Erfurt city centre. It was built after 1665 on Petersberg hill and was in military use until 1963. It dates from a time when Erfurt was ruled by the Electors of Mainz and is a unique example of the European style of fortress construction. Beneath the citadel is an underground maze of passageways that can be visited on guided tours organised by Erfurt Tourist Office.

The citadel was originally built on the site of a medieval Benedictine Monastery and the earliest parts of the complex date from the 12th century. Erfurt has also been ruled by Sweden, Prussia, Napoleon, the German Empire, the Nazis, and post-World War II Soviet occupying forces, and it was part of the German Democratic Republic (East Germany). All of these regimes used Petersberg Citadel and had an influence on its development. The baroque fortress was in military use until 1963. Since German reunification in 1990, the citadel has undergone significant restoration and it is now open to the public as a historic site.