Boulogne-sur-Mer Belfry

Boulogne-sur-Mer, France

The oldest monument of Boulogne-sur-Mer was built in three stages, in the 12th, 13th and 18th centuries. In fact, this belfry was originally a seigniorial prison, transferred to the community in 1230. 38 years later, Saint-Louis ordered the destruction of the tower’s second floor, as well as of the community’s charter of freedom and the town’s seal, as it was refusing to pay a tax on the eighth crusade. One year later, the town, its privileges restored, was able to rebuild the missing part. As for the last octagonal level, it was built in 1734, after the spire was burnt.

Today the belfry is one of 56 in northeastern France and Belgium with shared UNESCO World Heritage Site status and serves as the home to a museum of Celtic remains from the Roman occupation.



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Founded: 12th century
Category: Miscellaneous historic sites in France
Historical period: Birth of Capetian dynasty (France)


4.8/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

valentin chris (8 months ago)
It's beautiful ! No idea if we can visit... Lack of time on my side to ask :x
Lu Cie (10 months ago)
5€ per person for the guided tour, a bit expensive for the little information the guide gives... the building and the view make up for the lack of information. If you are thirsty for history, even the Wikipedia page for the building is more extensive and interesting than the guide... who didn't even remember the name of the bell.
Peter Van Renterghem (16 months ago)
The belfry is the oldest building in Boulogne-Sur-Mer and towers above the rest. The belfry is 47 meters high and has overlooked the city since the 12th century. It was ceded to the citizens of the city by Philippe Hurepel, Count of Bouloge (and son of King Philippe Auguste) and, like all belfries, symbolizes common freedom. The belfry forms a confluence with the town hall, which was only added a lot later, in the 18th century. The brick and stone used are a fairly rare combination of materials in Boulogne-Sur-Mer. The two buildings are witnesses to the different architectural styles over the centuries.
barbara Lilin (2 years ago)
Very beautiful view of the whole city and its surroundings from the top of the belfry. A very interesting guided tour on the occasion of heritage days. I discovered that the belfry had first been a castrum in Roman times then a keep before becoming the guardian of the city's seal and charter and the symbol of communal freedoms. In the ground floor room there are beautiful sculptures of heads from old Boulogne residences. Beautiful tangle of beams and joists on the second and third levels.
A o (4 years ago)
Very nice view and good visit.
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