My favourite Notre Dame photos and memories

by Sonja Faul

I was shocked and saddened to hear the news of the fire that blazed through the Notre Dame and almost burned it to ashes. It’s one of those things that you think can never happen in our modern world today. But it happened. We almost lost the Notre Dame (that sounds so dramatic, but it’s true).

This may come as a surprise to some of my readers, but I’m not a fan of Paris. Whaaattt? Did she just say that she doesn’t like Paris? Yep, I sure did. Not at all! However, the city has a couple of redeeming qualities, and one of the best places to go, for me, has always been the Notre Dame. The cathedral was my second favourite building in Paris (just behind the Sacré-Cœur) and one of my favourite churches in Europe. Below I share my photos and best memories of the Notre Dame.

A photo of the Notre Dame I took in 2018.

My first trip to Paris

The Notre Dame Cathedral was my introduction to Paris, the very first attraction I saw when I arrived in the city. It was legendary, and there I was, standing in the shadow of this iconic monument. I instantly fell in love with the gothic architecture –  the spires, pointy windows, interesting facades, and creepy gargoyles.

This was the first ever photo I took of the Notre Dame. It was early morning and the light was crappy, but the photo is still special.

My first queue in France was to enter the Notre Dame. Entry to the cathedral was free of charge, you only had to wait in line. And there was always a queue but it moved fairly quickly. The interior of the cathedral was just as spectacular as the outside. I adored the stained glass windows, high vaulted ceilings, columns, and candles. It was a place of rest and peace. I remember wanting to climb the tower on my first trip, but our itinerary was jam-packed didn’t allow for it.

The inside of the cathedral was so peaceful. Also, I was tired and a little jet lagged in this photo.
Stained glass windows and chandeliers.
My favourite photo I took inside the cathedral back in 2014.

My second trip to Paris

Last year I travelled to Strasbourg and Colmar via Paris. This was my second time in the city and it was during this short trip that I climbed the bell tower for one of the best views in Paris. Looking back now, I’m so glad that I had the opportunity. The climb left me breathless and so did the view. My favourite part was seeing the rest of the cathedral from above (I loved seeing it from a different perspective) and also seeing the gargoyles up close and personal.

I could easily stare at the facade for hours and hours, taking in every little detail.
The gargoyles captivated me.

I went inside the cathedral, again, and it was just as I had remembered. I’ve found that repeating an experience that you loved and enjoyed can often be disappointing the second time. But this was not the case at all with the Notre Dame. The inside of the cathedral was just as magical as the first time I saw it.

I absolutely adored the inside of the cathedral.
The chandeliers, just as I remembered them.

Over to you. What is your most cherished Notre Dame memory? I’d love to hear it!

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