OrangeSmile Tours
World most extreme places

Basilica and hill of Vezelay, France

From series “The Most Interesting UNESCO Sites in France”
Year: 9 century.

A well-known religious landmark is located in the charming Burgundian village of Vezelay. This is the Basilica of Saint Mary Magdalene. It has remained the most important pilgrimage center in Europe for hundreds of years. The very first Benedictine abbey was founded in Vezelay in the 9th century. The very first monastic monasteries were founded on these lands much earlier. But they were destroyed as a result of the invasion of the Arabs and Normans. The abbey became a famous pilgrimage center in the 11th century. It was officially announced that the holy relics of Mary Magdalene were transferred to it during this period.

It was only found out at the end of the 13th century that this sacred relic was kept in a completely different place. A period of decline began for the abbey from this point on. It lost many of its valuables during the years of religious wars. The basilica and monastery were partially destroyed during the French Revolution. They were abandoned in the first half of the 19th century. They were on the verge of destruction at this time. The religious monument attracted the attention of the famous public and political figures in France during this period.

The writer Prosper Merimee was one of the first to worry about the loss of a historical monument. Restoration of the monument began in 1840. It lasted for more than twenty years. The best masters participated in it. Some valuable relics were moved to the monastery in the 70s of the 19th century. It started receiving pilgrims again after that. The historic cathedral attracts not only pilgrims but also ordinary tourists today.

It is interesting for its spectacular sculptural decoration. It was restored during the reconstruction. One of the main values of the basilica is considered to be a golden reliquary. The religious monument is also notable for its unusual location. It is located on the top of a hill. Many historical buildings of various periods are located near it. A gorgeous panoramic view of the surrounding area opens from the top of the hill. You should take a walk through the streets of the medieval village of Vezelay after visiting the religious monument. Next - Ancient theater and Arc de Triomphe in Orange

Notre-Dame de Chartres Cathedral, France Notre-Dame de Chartres Cathedral, France
  Notre-Dame de Chartres Cathedral, France   Ancient theater and Arc de Triomphe in Orange, France  
Ancient theater and Arc de Triomphe in Orange, France Ancient theater and Arc de Triomphe in Orange, France

Basilica and hill of Vezelay - interactive map

Nearest airports:
 »  Auxerre - Branches Airport AUF - in 45 km
 »  Nevers Airport NVS - in 65 km
 »  Barberey Airport QYR - in 100 km
 »  Longvic Airport DIJ - in 106 km
 »  Bourges Airport BOU - in 107 km
 Cities nearby

Best hotels near Basilica and hill of Vezelay

Le Relais du Morvan

Located in 4 km from Basilica and hill of Vezelay
Route on the map:
Rooms: 16
Each room includes a flat-screen TV with cable channels and a private bathroom with a bath or shower. A continental breakfast is served daily and … More: photo, rates and booking
Yourtes Land

Located in 5 km from Basilica and hill of Vezelay
Route on the map:
Rooms: 5
Decorated with traditional Mongolian furniture, all yurts include heating, shared bathroom facilities, minibar and a refrigerator. Guests can also … More: photo, rates and booking
La Renommée

Located in 6 km from Basilica and hill of Vezelay
Route on the map:
Rooms: 12
With flat-screen TVs, all rooms are soundproofed, heated and feature carpet flooring. En suite bathroom facilities are provided and each room has a … More: photo, rates and booking
Holiday Home Maison Pouilly Fontenay Pres Vezelay

Located in 7 km from Basilica and hill of Vezelay
Route on the map:
Rooms: 1

Nearest unique sightseeing spots to visit

Cistercian Abbey of Fontenay
57 km - Cistercian Abbey of Fontenay
The Abbey of Fontenay is the oldest surviving Cistercian monastery in France. It was founded in 1118. Its foundation was due to the rapid growth of the order. The 12th and 13th centuries were the heydays of the monastery. It has been falling into disrepair since the …
Chateau de Chateauneuf
76 km - Chateau de Chateauneuf
The ancient Château de Châteauneuf is located in the commune of the same name in France. It was built in the 12th century. The first major reconstruction of the fortress took place in the 15th century. It has remained almost unchanged since then. The historical …
Cathedrale Saint-Etienne de Bourges
105 km - Cathedrale Saint-Etienne de Bourges
Saint-Étienne Cathedral is also known to many travelers as Bourges Cathedral. Its construction began in the late 12th century. The magnificent Gothic cathedral was consecrated in 1324. The official opening of the cathedral took place in the first half of the 14th …
Saint-Nazaire Base
112 km - Saint-Nazaire Base
On the Atlantic coast of France, not far from the city of Saint Nazaire is the abandoned submarine base of the same name. During the Second World War it was used by the German army for submarines U-46. The military base was built in occupied France in 1943. At the time …
Ancient city Provins
127 km - Ancient city Provins
The historic city of Provins is located in the province of Champagne. Its entire territory is also declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This merchant city was formed in the Middle Ages. About 11,5 thousand people live in it at present. The city was built on top of a …
Chateau de Fontainebleau
128 km - Chateau de Fontainebleau
French Chateau de Fontainebleau is a wonderful example of Renaissance architectural style. The first owner of this palace was Louis VII. Then there lived great rulers of France, among which was Napoleon III. Since 1981 this palace-park complex is in the UNESCO World … - online travel reservation expert providing reliable car rental and hotel booking services. We feature more than 25.000 destinations with 12.000 rental offices and 200.000 hotels worldwide.
Secure Server
OrangeSmile B.V. - Hotel Booking Worldwide
Head office: Weegschaalstraat 3 Eindhoven, 5632 CW Netherlands
+31 40 40 150 44

Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | About us
Copyright © 2002 - OrangeSmile Tours B.V. | | Under the direction and management of IVRA Holding B.V. - Registered at Kamer van Koophandel (KvK), The Netherlands No. 17237018