Paris Travel Planner   Crypte de Notre-Dame, Paris, France
Interested in the history and archaeology of the Île de la Cité? This is the place for you.




Paris is an old city, dating back to 52 BCE and the conquest of the Gauls by Julius Caesar. At that time it was known as Lutèce (Lutetia). The Île de la Cité was the center of the old city, and continued to be the center as the city grew.

From 1965 until 1972 archaeologists excavated the area under the square in front of Notre-Dame, known as the parvis. These excavations uncovered ruins dating back to Roman times. In 1980 the Crypte Archaeologique du Parvis Notre-Dame was opened to the public as a museum tracing the history of this fascinating city.

You'll see actual remains of Roman buildings, ramparts, and even baths.

Other exhibits focus on the Middle Ages and the urban development taking place as the Cathedral was built, starting in 1163. You can follow the development of the Cathedral through reconstructions of the four stages. You'll also see some foundation remains from medieval houses, which used Roman remains in their construction.

In the 18th and 19th centuries, many medieval buildings were taken down and new buildings created. Napoléon III charged Baron Haussmann, the famous city planner, with transforming the medieval city to a "modern" and clean city.

The Crypt also hosts special exhibitions on the history of Paris, focusing on specific time periods and/or aspects of culture.

Paris Museum Pass accepted. Closed Mondays.

Métro: Cité
RER: St-Michel

Crypte Archaeologique du parvis Notre-Dame
7 parvis Notre-Dame, Place Jean-Paul II
75004 Paris, France
+33 (0)1 55 42 50 10

Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris

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Archaeological Crypt, Parvis Notre Dame, Paris

Above, Entrance to the Crypte Archaeologique on the parvis Notre-Dame.

Below, Roman ruins in the Crypt.

Roman ruins, Paris

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