Paris, France: The Sacre Coeur (Basilica of the Sacred Heart)
About Sacre Coeur:
One of the most recognizable structures in Paris, the Sacred Heart Basilica sits atop the hill of Montmartre. From here you have a breathtaking view of Paris from one of the city’s most unique neighborhoods.
It claims to rest on the place where the first Bishop of Paris, Saint Denis, is said to have been beheaded. Tradition tells the story that after beheading he carried his head to the nearby suburb of St. Denis where the Abbey Church of St. Denis now stands.
The Basilica was built after the Franco-Prussian war in 1871, a war that pitted the Catholics and Royalists on one side against the secularists on the other. The Basilica was built to expiate the sins of the people.
Here you will find Eucharistic Adoration 24 hours a day, as it has been continually since 1885! Therefore visitors are requested to be silent and be modestly dressed. No photographs or videos are allowed inside.
There is a funicular to take you up to the hill from the street down below. Occasionally when this is not working there are buses that will do the same. Or, of course, you can walk up the hill to the Basilica, although the climb is somewhat steep.
The view looking upward toward the steps is one of Paris’ most photographed spots and a gathering place for tourists as well as pilgrims.
There are several Masses each day, more on Sundays of course. There is also the opportunity for Confession every day, Vespers and special Masses on certain feast days. Check their website for schedules.
Finding Sacre Coeur:
We recommend “Little Black Book of Paris” and “Streetwise Maps” to help you find your way.
Address: 35 Rue du Chevalier de la Barre, 75018 Paris
GPS coordinates: 48° 53′ 14.0568” N, 2° 20′ 36.0852” E
Tel: +33 1 53 41 89 00
Click here for the official website of the Sacre Coeur Basilica in Paris.
A little-known fact: there is a vineyard here, Le Clos Montmartre, right in the heart of Paris. Dating from 1932, it is the last remaining vineyard in the city and still produces grapes and some 70 varieties of wine. It is located at the base of Montmartre, not far from the funicular. You can find their website here.
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