The Catacombs of Paris (French: Catacombes de Paris, pronunciation ) are underground ossuaries in Paris, France, which hold the remains of more than six million people in a small part of a tunnel network built to consolidate Paris' ancient stone quarries. Extending south from the Barrière d'Enfer ("Gate of Hell") former city gate, this ossuary was created as part of the effort to eliminate the city's overflowing cemeteries. Preparation work began shortly after a 1774 series of gruesome Saint Innocents-cemetery-quarter basement wall collapses added a sense of urgency to the cemetery-eliminating measure, and from 1786, nightly processions of covered wagons transferred remains from most of Paris' cemeteries to a mine shaft opened near the Rue de la Tombe-Issoire.
The ossuary remained largely forgotten until it became a novelty-place for concerts and other private events in the early 19th century; after further renovations and the construction of accesses around Place Denfert-Rochereau, it was opened to public visitation from 1874. Since 2013, the Catacombs number among the fourteen City of Paris Museums managed by Paris Musées. Although the ossuary comprises only a small section of the underground "carrières de Paris" ("quarries of Paris"), Parisians currently often refer to the entire tunnel network as the catacombs.
|Tuesday||10:00 AM – 8:30 PM|
|Wednesday||10:00 AM – 8:30 PM|
|Thursday||10:00 AM – 8:30 PM|
|Friday||10:00 AM – 8:30 PM|
|Saturday||10:00 AM – 8:30 PM|
|Sunday||10:00 AM – 8:30 PM|
Bryan Mestre | Feb 21, 2018
Absolutely fascinating place to visit. Such an interesting place to visit. I was not expecting anything quite like it. I expected to have to book tickets for it weeks in advance, but instead i was able to book an hour before visiting using Headout. Well worth buying the fast pass as the queue started round the block! The history of the catacombs, the general atmosphere down there, was something unlike anything i expected. Fascinating. I would insist anyone wishing to visit to invest some money in the audio guides as well as that made the visit even more stimulating.
Dylan | Mar 2, 2018
The Paris Catacombs were hands down the highlight of my trip to Paris. My wife and I waited nearly two hours in line, but it was 100% worth it. Being able to see something like this was a once in a lifetime opportunity and the arrangements of bones were mesmerizing. It has the most odd beauty to it all. If you have the opportunity, go! Its worth the wait.
David S | Mar 3, 2018
Allow me to walk you through the entire experience. You will likely wait in line. Once you get in, you will walk down about 100 spiral steps to arrive in a room with some literature on the walls offering information about the catacombs. You will then walk through a tunnel for about 10 minutes to reach another open room with even more literature. Finally, you will arrive in the catacombs. The bones are neatly stacked. You will walk about 25-30 minutes or so through the walkway seeing more and more bones. After about 2 minutes, it becomes very boring. It all looks the same throughout. Overall, interesting place, but pretty boring and not worth the time and price compared to many other great places to visit in Paris.
Shawna Rose | Jan 23, 2018
How to visit the catacombs with almost zero people in it. PRE-PURCHASE YOUR TICKETS AND PRINT THEM OUT!! This is very important. I bought my tickets online before I ever left America. The line forms early and gets long very quickly. Because we already had tickets we walked right by everyone at opening and went it. We skipped the audio recordings device to avoided that line also. Once we we passed the crowd we descended the stairs, which are man and steep. Not for weak of knees We were the first people of the day and we got to spend about an hour on our own. No one in our pictures, no one bumping into you. It was amazing. If I ever decide to visit again I will do it the exact same way. The catacombs are beautiful and experiencing them in silence and alone is one of the most humbling experiences of my life.
Gwen Selleck | Feb 16, 2018
We went on a Friday without pre purchasing tickets. We waited about an hour and 20 minutes, so we got in about 13h. We skipped the audio recording and walked by the crowd reading at the bottom of the stairs, to enter the catacomb. It wasn't packed, we got plenty of photos without other people in them. We also had plenty of opportunity to see things at our own pace. It was very cold though. We went on a February day that was around 8 degrees, but it was much colder inside. The stairs seem to go down forever. It was dizzying. I personally found the catacombs creepy and it made me feel claustrophobic, but my partner thoroughly enjoyed it.
Alexandra Geesman | Mar 16, 2018
A beautiful macabre place to visit! We bought the fast pass (includes audio guide) into the Catacombs which was definitely worth it since we bi-passed a huge line (always feels good). There are lots of the English tour guides going through so we got to learn even more just by shuffling along side them. I will say the tours get special areas to explore that the general passes don’t get. It is a tad cold once you get down the passage, so bring a coat. If you are scared of bugs don’t look too close to the skulls since they are crawling with them. Σ(-᷅_-᷄๑) DON’T STEAL BRO! Not cool! Very angry at the many graffiti and missing pieces! Such unique history should not be tampered with. Buy a skull somewhere else to bring home.
Nico Verduin | Mar 20, 2018
A great part of the the city. This hidden part of Paris maybe a bit macabre for some but I definitely like it. Get to see stacks of human remains, bones and skulls, deep under the ground. I wish there were more catacombs open to the public. There will be a line to stand in and for the handicapped not the best tourist attraction. Read up on it and go see.
Jay Staniforth | Apr 13, 2018
Top tips... Get there about half hour before it opens in the morning, or go there around 6pm to reduce the queue wait. We waited about half hour which was OK. If you have to go outside of those times, buy a queue jump ticket, although consider that you will still probably be waiting about an hour Get the audio experience. If you don't, you will pretty much be looking at what seems to be the same thing through the whole walk. You don't need boots or warm clothing etc. If you're 6ft or taller, you will need to watch your head in places. Take a torch if you want to see down the closed off paths. Ask the people in the ticket office about any cool or scary stories... They have some great things to say. I won't ruin it for you. We paid 17 euros I think to get in and we enjoyed it. I'd say its a do once and never again experience but, nonetheless, it was enjoyable.
Julian Philpot | Apr 30, 2018
If you like old bones and you're a masochist, this is an ideal way to waste your time when you could be enjoying Paris. I arrived here at 9am, an hour before opening time, to find a queue about 50 people long which I joined. By 10am there were about 100 people in front due to family groups sending one person to stand in line, then joining them shortly before 10. But this wasn't the main problem. As the line inched forward, no fewer than FOUR tour groups were admitted in front of the other visitors. Tour groups pay a surcharge so they get priority, and only 200 people are allowed to be underground at any time, so it was nearly 2 hours before I finally got to the entrance. (You can book in advance but it costs twice as much... and there aren't many advance tickets.) While waiting patiently, next to piles of Parisian rubbish, you can watch the official museum staff hanging around the entrance, smoking and looking like extras from a dodgy French crime series, and completely ignoring their customers. Avoid. In all, a splendid example of French organization and traditional Parisian hospitality.
Sabrina Gell | Apr 9, 2018
This place was really interesting. I liked learning about the catacombs and the history. That being said, I would tell everyone to skip this if you can't get tickets ahead of time and have to wait more than an hour or so. It was cool, but waiting for several hours made it seem less great.
JennaLyn Harms | Apr 13, 2018
If you're able to get there as soon as it opens, the line can get quite long... Or you can buy a skip the line pass - I totally recommend doing this. Now, this is not a location for those that can not do long distances or a lot of stairs. Or if you have problems with cramped quarters, some of the ceilings almost brushed my head and I'm 5'6". If you can, or are willing to still try then this is a must see. It is history in all it's startling intrique. The audio provides tidbits, and you can read up in sections leading to the main areas. Then you have the bones. Some are young, some are old, some have wounds and medical scars, you can see the bones diseases up close - but not too close. No touching. Another bonus, the metro stop is literally across the street.
Ashish Kedia | May 27, 2018
This is one of the best places to visit if you are interested in science and history. The places is really well maintained and is fascinating to look at. You actually have to go down 30m below the ground. Pay extra for the audio guide it is worth it. They don't allow tripods inside and the place is not very well lit so if you are photography enthusiast prepare for high ISO low light photos.
Game Addiction | May 13, 2018
I original bought a ticket online for the 5 May. When I arrived it was closed because of Strike. Still, I went to the Tobacco shop to ask for information and I'm glad that I did. They gave me a new ticket for the next day without paying again. I highly recommend buying the tickets online. It may cost a little more but you don't have to wait that long hours. I showed my ticket next day and was put in an extra short line. I was waiting just about 20 Minutes witch is extremely short for the Catacombs. The staff is very nice and helpful. I also was lucky to get a little private guide tour for free. It was an interesting experience. A place full of history and an unique museum.
Dimah M | May 12, 2018
I stayed around 2 hours in queue and the toor took around 45 minutes. I came very early but I recommend you come 1 hour - 30 minutes before opening to get inside quicker. Although you can book a special time for visiting online and use separate queue that is much faster. It’s very interesting place and a lot of historical information. There are lot of cafes and bistro around so you can have a drink or snack while waiting. You will enjoy so you will not regret to spend a lot of time in queue.
Howard Kainer | Jun 23, 2018
Science and history describes my experiences at the Catacombs of Paris. For most Americans, it is not there first choice. But after sharing my experiences there, it made them more curious. It is a long underground walk, so plan on at least three (3) to four (4) hours to take in all the rich history. By the way, reservations are required and bring a jacket since it can be cool below ground in Paris.
mark cannella | Jul 6, 2018
Cool experience, however instructions could be improved. The ticket should state, go to front of line if you bought online from their Web site. The numbers for the audio should be depicted better once you're in catacomb.
Richard deMorris | Aug 2, 2018
Went during July, and the day was very clear and sunny. I regret not bringing an umbrella for shade or a portable camping seat to sit comfortably. If you're waiting, make sure to drink plenty of water and maybe have a snack. Even with the 3 hour wait (we didn't have money for a fast pass), this was a very cool and educational trip. A section of the tour doesn't allow flash photography, so plan accordingly with your camera. The gift shop was nice to get items from as well after the underground tour.
amoosebitmymom | Jul 24, 2018
Incredible monument. Highly recommend to come with a guide, because you can go to restricted areas and see special things. You walk extra close to bones so not for the weak hearted
Li Hjalmarsson | Jul 14, 2018
A really cool place if you are interested in these things. It was a nice walk and just creepy enough. We arrived at 9.30 and waited about 2 hours to get in, walk took about an hour maybe. I would recommend booking tickets in advance.
Erroll Ends | Jul 26, 2018
Lines are no joke. We spent a little over two hours in line just to get to the booth and unfortunately it was 95 degrees today. If you’re into the macabre or putting your life in perspective against countless nameless others then defiantly check it out. We got the audio guide as we saw someone posted you should but in honesty we only saw signs for four points so didn’t feel worth the 10€ we paid. We got caught up with everything down there and the signs all kinda blended in. If you’re wanting to do it defiantly get a ticket before hand. It’s interesting and worth seeing but the place could be run better so lines don’t run multiple hours, an immediate thought would be prescheduled tickets with allotted times. Also the google live said it was less busy than normal which is why we went when we did, we had a longer wait than many of the comments we read, I would suggest don’t rely on the live feed especially if the temperature is high. Overall, it’s interesting and something you really don’t ever see but it was pricy with a long wait and then walk through kinda low areas. Worth doing at least once I’d say.
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