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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

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

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

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

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

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!

Our insider 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 should I visit?
    Open daily 8:00AM to 8:00PM in the summer, 9:00AM to 5:00PM in the winter.
  • Is it expensive?
    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 information
    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

Overall rating
4.6 / 5
based on 1,466 reviews

AMAZING experience and highly recommend!

Did a photoshoot for a surprise engagement. There were some last minute changes but everything still went very smoothly. Beks is an amazing photographer and would definitely have her do another shoot for us. We ran late to the shoot and she still stayed for almost the entire hour and did multiple different locations and poses. We LOVE how the photos came out and everyone we share them with say they are gorgeous. Highly recommend for anyone that is doing a surprise proposal or anyone that just wants to have some nice photos of your vacation!

Paris: Photo Shoot with a Private Travel Photographer Reviewed by

Comfortable, Professional with outstanding photographic results

Alain was a true professional, made sure that he kept the session easy-going and comfortable. We felt like a friend was taking our pictures. Due to the inability to secure a large enough Uber ride to get to the Eiffel Tower in a timely manner, we improvised to the surrounding area and couldn't be happier with the results. Highly recommend using his services.

Exceptional tour - we had a great time experiencing Montmartre

Fred (our guide) was excellent. He shared so much history with us about Montmartre and provided us with context so we could really experience the district. Super casual and friendly with a very personalised experience. Would take a tour with Fred anytime we are back in Paris. Thank you

Montmartre & Sacré Coeur: 2.5-Hour Walking Tour Reviewed by

Interesting tour different content than expected

I found our guide to be very pleasant and interesting He coped with a big group very well I feel that I learned a lot about Monmartre It was my birthday and I found it odd to be spending so much time in a graveyard!!! Would rather have had more time at Sacre Coure

Montmartre 2-Hour Walking Tour in English Reviewed by

Brilliant content and a totally professional guide in Lindsay.

An interesting history of the area in 2 and 1/2 hours. Lindsay linked the story from beginning to end and provided us with a clear idea of the history of Montmarte and the influence of the people who moved into the area. Well worth the time and $$ investment.

Montmartre 2-Hour Walking Tour in English Reviewed by

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