Tucked within the Palace of Justice complex, this masterpiece reveals nothing of its splendour from the street. It must be said that the Sainte-Chapelle was never intended to be open to the public.
King Louis IX (later canonized Saint-Louis) ordered the construction of the chapel in the 13th century to shelter his holy relics (the crown of thorns and a fragment of Christ’s cross), now conserved in the Notre Dame Cathedral. This precious reliquary, along with the Conciergerie, are the last remaining vestiges of the Palais de la Cité, the first royal palace, where French kings lived until the 14th century.
Play of light
The Sainte-Chapelle’s lower chapel, through which you enter on the ground floor, is reminiscent of a crypt, and includes 140 capitals ornately decorated with floral motifs characteristic of the early 13th century. A small stairway leads to an upper chapel, which once held the relics and was connected to the king’s chambers.
Ever since its completion in 1248, this vessel of polychrome light has mesmerised visitors. Almost entirely composed of 15-meter-high stained glass windowpanes, separated only by delicate colonnettes supporting rib vaults, this architectural wonder is dazzling to behold. It is one of the most complete and remarkable examples of stained glass craftsmanship from the French Gothic period.
Tip: plan your visit for a sunny day, to take full advantage of the colourful light shimmering through all 600 m2 of stained glass. And music lovers can attend a classical music concert held inside the chapel. Magic!
TOP TIP: the visit of the Sainte-Chapelle is included in the Paris Region Pass Experience.
Access and contact
Metro : line 4, station Cité Bus : lines 21, 27, 38, 85, 96 and Balabus
Days and opening hours
From 02/01 to 31/03/2020, daily between 9 am and 5 pm. From 01/04 to 30⁄09, daily between 9 am and 7 pm. Laste entrance : 30 minutes before closing time. Close from 13:00 to 14h15, from monday to friday. Night-time on wednesday till 21:30 from mid-May to Mid-September. From 01/10 to 31⁄12, daily between 9 am and 5 pm. Laste entrance : 30 minutes before closing time. Close from 13:00 to 14h15, from monday to friday.
- 9 €
- From 02/01 to 31/03/2020 Adult: 9 to 11.50 €. From 01/04 to 30/09/2020 Adult: 9 to 11.50 €. From 01/10 to 31/12/2020 Adult: 9 to 11.50 €. Free entry for children < 18 years, Job-seeker, disabled people and accompanying persons. Group rate available for > 20 people. Free admission : -For all, the first sunday of the month between November and March included 18-25 years old (for people under 26 years old who are citizens of one the 27 countries of EU or are non-European permanent residents of France). Included in the Paris Museum Pass Audioguides: Reduced price : 3€ Full price : 4,5€ Couple (2 audioguides) : 6€ Twinnned ticket for Conciergerie and Sainte-Chapelle From 12€ to 15€.
Guided tour languages
Bulletin board languages
Single mean time tour60 mins
Single services tour
- Unguided individual tours available permanently