France Travel Planner by Tom Brosnahan & Jane Fisher   Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Chartres
The cathedral of Chartres is the best-preserved example of pure Gothic architecture in Europe. Its stained glass windows are simply splendid.





Though the Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris is known to everyone, the Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Chartres is beloved deeply by those who know it because of its harmonious architecture and its splendid stained-glass windows.

Built in the 1200s atop the foundations of an earlier church, the cathedral of Chartres is the purest Gothic church you'll see in all of Europe.

It's an easy day-trip from Paris, and well worth it to see the church's pure Gothic architecture, to marvel at its splendid stained-glass windows, to walk its medieval maze, and, if you choose, to attend mass.

  Stained Glass, Chartres, France
  Stained glass window...

If you have a pair of binoculars with you, take them to Chartres, and you will love being able to examine the great, lofty windows in detail.

Excellent guided tours of the cathedral are offered in English, and a tour is necessary if you want all the lore on medieval construction, the eventful history of the church, and on the meaning of the stories that are told in the colored glass.

The cathedral of Chartres is open every day from 08:30 am to 19:30 (7:30 pm) for free (donations accepted). There are small fees for visiting the crypt and the tower.

Audio tours are available for a fee, and the cathedral has a souvenir and bookshop, proceeds of which help to maintain this historic monument.

Stained Glass Windows


Trains to Chartres

Day-trips from Paris

Paris Transport

Notre-Dame de Paris

About Paris


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Cathedral Notre-Dame de Chartres, France

La Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Chartres





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