Sacre-Coeur Basilica
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Sacre-Coeur Basilica: Tours & Tickets

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The history and architecture of Montmartre's Sacré-Cœur

With its stunning façade, impressive interior, and breathtaking views over Paris, the "Sacred Heart" is as popular among locals as it is tour groups. Here are a few interesting facts to help better understand its relationship with the city.

Construction began after the Franco-Prussian War

With the French defeated, Bishop Fournier claimed God had punished the country for "a century of moral decline" since the revolution. The basilica was built to expiate Paris' sins!

It watched over a most rebellious neighborhood

Paris' highest point didn't always swarm with tourists and bohemians. Its original abbey was razed during the revolution, and the site later saw the Paris Commune uprising in 1871.

Construction finished in 1914

Though the foundation stone was laid in 1875, the basilica took 29 years to build. With the outbreak of the First World War, the building wasn't consecrated until 1919.

It was designed in response to the Palais Garnier

Paul Abadie's Romano-Byzantine-influenced design was unusual at the time, but it was intended to counter the unabashed opulence of Paris' recently built opera house.

An extinct species was discovered on the site

During the digging of its unusually deep foundations, a tooth was found and later identified as that of Palaeotherium – a previously undiscovered species of prehistoric tapir!

Sacre-Coeur Basilica: Our Tips

Booking tickets

Access to the Sacré-Cœur is free! A tour can help you make the most of your visit, but note that, as a sanctuary for religious worship, guided tour groups aren't allowed inside the chapels.

What are the opening times?

The Sacré-Cœur is open to visitors between the hours of 8:00AM and 8:00PM from May to September, and 9:00AM and 5:00PM from October to April. Mass is held from Monday to Friday at 7:00AM, 11:15AM, 3:00PM (Friday only), 6:30PM, and 10:00PM. Weekend times are 7:00AM, 11:00AM, 6:00PM (Sunday only), and 10:00PM.

How to get there?

The easiest way to reach the Sacré-Cœur is by taking the Metro line 2 to Anvers. From there it is just a short walk to the funicular car, should the scenic walk through the hill's steep gardens appear too daunting! The hill can also be reached by bus routes 30, 31, 80, and 85.

Good to Know

  • When to visit
    Open daily 8:00AM to 8:00PM in the summer, 9:00AM to 5:00PM in the winter.
  • What is the price?
    The Sacré-Cœur is free to visit!
  • Will I need a guide?
    Definitely, although the tours cannot go inside the chapels. Might be worth it to check out our best-selling tours.
  • How to get there
    Take the Metro line 2 to Anvers and walk or take the funicular car up, or take buses 30, 31, 80 or 85.
  • Additional tips
    Be aware of your surroundings and your belongings in crowded areas. | If you can, save your visit for a clear day, when views over the city are incredible!

What People Are Saying About Sacre-Coeur Basilica

Lots of interesting facts told in a light-hearted way, I recommend it

Kit commentary about Montmarte was informative with a little dash of humor. Although there are a few steep climbs, I still recommend this tour. After all Montmarte is hilly and walking really is the best way to see it.

Paris: Montmartre 2-Hour Walking Tour Reviewed by vanessa, 09/24/2016

good offering, well informwell organized, great tour leader, fair cost

I receive confirmation in 2 days with details. Tour staff service us with very good, clear and detail explanation of tour package, especially for the Eiffel Tower. The cruise tour also take long time than we expected and a lot of historical sites were seen. Warm and friendly response from local people around Seine River is so excited. Bus tour covered all historic buildings, mall, shops, restaurants, train stations and stops at several places that we easily accessed.

Absolutely excellent . Entertaining and fun!

Our guide Inga was extraordinary. Her English was fabulous , better than many natives! She was welcoming , polite , funny and very informative . I am sure she has taken this tour often but at no time did she appear bored or fed up with our questions. It was good value for money , well done . We really hope you value this employee because she is excellent. Marion Murdoch , Aberfeldy.

Paris: 2-Hour Guided Tour through Montmartre Reviewed by Marion, 09/15/2015

Great Tour, able to visit all major attraction in one day

We loved our tour. We signed up for a group tour but no one else was in our group. The tour turned out to be a private tour. Our tour guide was very knowledgeable. At first he seemed standoffish, but once we got to know him, he warmed up to us. We went with the hotel pick-up and drop-off. We were very happy we did this, and would not have changed a thing all day. Great all around trip and well worth the money! Thank You

We had a great time with our guide un Montmartre

Its a nice walking tour,the guide was on time, she was so nice with all my family,we had great time.

Paris: Montmartre Private Walking Tour Reviewed by Ma.del Pilar Reyna, 03/10/2015

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Sacre-Coeur Basilica
Based on 121 reviews by GetYourGuide customers