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“Busy but Architecturally Impressive”

Basilica du Sacre-Coeur de Montmartre
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Guided Tour of Sacré-Coeur and Montmartre
Ranked #10 of 1,107 things to do in Paris
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Fee: No
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: This Montmartre landmark, a 19th-century basilica built by the French government following the Franco-Prussian War, features a large medieval dome that provides excellent views of the city.
Mosta, Malta
Level Contributor
113 reviews
96 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“Busy but Architecturally Impressive”
Reviewed January 31, 2013

I wasn't surprised by the huge amount of people trying to enter the Basilica and taking photos on the steps given I had read reviews before. Neither about the amount of beggars or street sellers in every area (very are very difficult to avoid) which however do make it less annoying.

Nevertheless, this is a must see landmark primarily for the architectural beauty particularly externally but also for its imposing location. Nice views over Paris although I do not fully agree that this location offers the best view - it depends for what :-)

Would strongly recommend to couple this with a visit to the Eglise of St.Pierre de Montmartre just a corner away besides Place du Tertre!

Visited January 2013
Thank KrisCini
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Level Contributor
27 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed January 30, 2013

Atop a hill, this place is magical again, not much to do but admire the size of this structure and the histroy behind it... loved the gardens leading to it, beware of the guys selling some sort of wristband, you won't notice when they tie it and start asking for money....

Visited August 2012
1 Thank acsaroj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
20 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Best view in the city”
Reviewed January 30, 2013

Great place, very vivid even in freezing winter. I asked my wife to marry me just behind the Basilica, what can I say? Lovely place!!

Visited January 2013
Thank Mauricio G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Avoid the front steps.”
Reviewed January 29, 2013

Interesting enough, if, a bit of a trek to get to. It is a shame that they don't let you take photos, but stil lworth a visit.

Don't go in/out down the front steps though, unless you're happy to face a small army of people who will give you 'free' portraits or magic wristbands, then demand a few dozen euros as payment. Concealing your banknotes and leaving less than a euro in change in your wallet is an amusing way of getting rid of them though. You'll leave a few coins lighter, but also armed with a crap charicature or some kind of magic woven jewlery. What more could you want?

Visited January 2013
Thank Sneep
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York
Level Contributor
125 reviews
44 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 93 helpful votes
Reviewed January 29, 2013

I actually stayed on rue Livingstone so I had a beautiful view of the Sacre-Coeur during my whole trip. Although I do personally think it looks more gorgeous from further away. Walking up the stairs was slightly painful although there is funicular if you want to skip the cardio workout. On the day I went up, it was really foggy so you didn't have a great view of Paris. The interior of the church is underwhelming but the Christ in Majesty mosaic is definitely impressive. I had considered walking up to the dome but was way too exhausted and wanted to get back to the bottom before it got dark which brings me to my last point about safety.

I don't think I ever felt unsafe walking in the area although I was definitely cautious because of what I'd read beforehand. Walk with purpose and I would say that you'll be fine. I'm in my 20s and was with my mother who's in her 50s and we were never harassed. With that said, I do think there are safer paths up to the Sacre-Coeur area. If you get off Anvers, you'll probably walk up rue de Steinkerque which is littered with tourists and people looking to rip off tourists (e.g. Three-card Monte). I think it's best to get off at Barbes-Rochechouart, walk down Rochechouart, make a slight right onto Clignancourt, and then walk onto rue Livingstone which takes you to the base of the Sacre Coeur. It's less tourist-ridden and it's safer because there are tons of locals shopping at the popular fabric stores on that street. I do advise going earlier in the day though because not only does it get dark after 5pm in the winter but many shops close so it gets really quiet.

Visited January 2013
Thank framboise8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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