Sainte Chapelle is a medieval chapel known for its 1,113 breathtaking stain glass windows and gothic architecture in the heart of Paris.
Sainte Chapelle was built in 1239 for King Louis IX, also known as Saint Louis, to house his collection of the relics of Christ. Possessing these relics indicated to other kingdoms that Louis IX was the most powerful monarch in the Western world. Among the relics collected by Louis IX was Christ’s Crown of Thorns. Thus, Sainte Chapelle is a monument symbolic of French history and power, as well as the importance of Christianity during French medieval times.
The Stained Glass
The history of Sainte Chapelle is interesting, but the stained glass on the second level of the chapel will leave you speechless. You will take a tiny staircase once inside the chapel that leads to the second floor. The second floor was used by King Louis IX while the first floor was used by members of the community.
There are over 1,000 stained glass panels covering three sides of the chapel. Each panel is 15 meters high. The windows tell biblical stories from the Old Testament and the New Testament up until the present day of Louis IX. Despite having been slightly damaged since their construction, they appear to be in mint condition to the everyday viewer.
What Else to See
Aside from the famous stained glass windows that make Sainte Chapelle glisten like a jewel, you will see gothic rayonnant architecture at its finest. Windows, high pointed towers, and lacey imagery characterize the chapel’s exterior. On the inside of the chapel, rich colors decorate walls and beautiful arches will lead your eyes to the magnificent ceiling.
Although Sainte Chapelle is the less famous church on the island of Île de la Cité, it offers visitors beautiful gothic architecture, immense stained glass windows, and an interesting history. Don’t miss out on Sainte Chapelle!
Planning Your Trip
Sainte Chapelle is open daily from 9AM to 1PM. At 2:15PM, the chapel reopens until 5PM.
Ticket Options and Prices
Full Price: 8.5€
Reduced Price: 6.5€
Group Price (greater than 20 people): 6.5€ per person
Free Admission: people under 18, people ages 18 – 25 who live in the EU or are residents in France, disabled people, jobseekers
Typically, there is a line to enter Sainte Chapelle. Since it is located right next to the Palais du Justice, their lines are right next to each other. While waiting, make sure you are in the right line for Sainte Chapelle.
If you are taking the metro to Sainte Chapelle, you will take Line 4 and get off at the Cité stop. Sainte Chapelle is equally accessible by buses 21, 27, 38, 85 and 96, as well as the Balabus. For more specific route planning and transportation options, check out the RATP website.
Check out these articles for more information on Paris main attractions.