On my last day in Paris, I went underground.
Aside from the splendor that Paris has to offer with its museums, churches and twinkling lights, it also offers something macabre. In the 18th century, while Paris was founding the Louvre Museum and building the Champs-Élysées, the church of Les Invalides and the Panthéon, its people were getting sick with infectious diseases emanating from its neglected cemeteries. As most of aboveground Paris was built using limestone extracted from its mines, the authorities launched an ambitious project to convert the abandoned quarries into an ossuary. Thus was born, from the bones of six million dead people, the Catacombs of Paris, the largest underground necropolis in the world. No wonder it has become a very popular attraction since its opening to the general public in 1867.
Catacombs of Paris
The popularity of the Catacombs of Paris was not something I accounted for when I planned my trip. So, I found myself at the end of a kilometer long queue and out in the freezing 4ºC/feels like -1ºC Parisian winter for almost two hours. It was such a relief when I finally entered the catacombs and experience its relatively comfortable 14ºC temperature.
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Catacombs of Paris: Decide Before You Go:
On-site ticket rates:
- Adults: 13 Euros
- 4-17 year old: 5 Euros
- Audio guide: 5 Euros
Online Tickets Rates:
- Reduce your waiting time + audio guide: 19 Euros
- 4-17 year old without audio guide: 5 Euros
Link to buy online tickets to the Catacombs of Paris: click here.
- Due to vandalism and theft of skulls in 2009, it is now forbidden to enter the Catacombs of Paris with suitcases and luggage. Only bags measuring 40x30cm are allowed.
- Visitor numbers are restricted to 200 at any time. Admission may be delayed for a short time during busy periods.
- There are 130 steps to go down and 83 steps back up to street level.
Catacombs of Paris
1, avenue du Colonel Henri Rol-Tanguy (place Denfert-Rochereau)
From Tuesday till Sunday from 10 am till 8:30 pm
Last admission: 7:30 pm
Catacombs are open 14th July, 1st November and 11th November.
Closed every Mondays and certain holidays (1st May and 15th August)
January 4, 2017
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