Chartres Travel Guide

  • Chartres
    by Gypsystravels
  • A-Mazing
    A-Mazing
    by rundoyle4
  • Chartres
    by edwis

Chartres Highlights

  • Pro
    nladd profile photo

    nladd says…

     Great cathedral, easy access from Paris, great pedestrian streets 

  • Con
    Wowmoment profile photo

    Wowmoment says…

     Few. We were lucky, but parking could be tricky 

  • In a nutshell
    Wowmoment profile photo

    Wowmoment says…

     Good pain in the neck from upward gazing in awe! 

Chartres Things to Do

  • The Bridges of Chartres

    Walking around this city, we will found several bridge and some of them go back several centuries. Here are some of the most representative.Pont Bouju [Bouju Bridge]The Bouju Bridge was, for a long time, the city’s most important bridge; it was also called “Grand Pont” and the “Pont du Château” because it served the village where the counts’...

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  • Médiatheque de Chartres

    Chartres media library or Mediatheque de Chartres formerly was a post office named Notre-Dame des Postes.Raoul Brandon, graduated from National School of Fine Arts Paris, was the architect who built the building in 1923. The construction itself finished in 1928.He took some inspirations of middle ages buildings and combined with new-Gothic bell...

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  • Chartres Labyrinth Garden

    When we walk to the behind of the cathedral and we found this labyrinth garden. The labyrinth garden is a part of Bishops Palace garden.

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  • Walking Around

    Walking around in this city and admiring the picturesque streets of Chartres, which with ancient half-timbered houses and old bridges are all an invitation for a stroll. Shops, crafts workshops and restaurants are all to be discovered in the old town. In the paved streets and up and down staircases, the shop windows of glassblowers, perfumers or...

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  • Notre Dame de Pilar (Our Lady of the...

    This polychrome statue, made of pear of wood, was sculpted in the 16th century and place upon the pillar from the 13th century rood-screen. In 1830 it was surrounded by a wooden structure in neo-gothic style. Marry's crown was added in 1855 during the papacy of Pius IX. In troubled times children would come here, kneeling, torch in hand, canting a...

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  • The Stained Glass Windows of Chartres

    Throughout the cathedral, vivid color splashes on to the floor from the superb stained glass windows that glow like jewels. Dating from the early 13th century, Chartres Cathedral's glass largely escaped harm during the religious wars of the 16th century; it is said to constitute one of the most complete collections of medieval stained glass in the...

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  • The Chartres Labyrinth

    The stone floor still bears its ancient floor labyrinth (1205), used for walking contemplation by monks and still used for meditation by pilgrims. There is just one path through the labyrinth and it is 964 feet long. According to John James, the center of the labyrinth once had a metal plate with figures of Theseus, Ariadne, and the Minotaur,...

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  • Chartres Cathedral

    Chartres Cathedral (full name Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Chartres) is located in the medieval town of Chartres. Chartres Cathedral is one of the greatest achievements in the history of architecture, it is almost perfectly preserved in its original design and details. Chartres' extensive cycle of portal sculpture remains fully intact and its glowing...

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  • Hôtel Huvé

    Built in the 16th century, this Renaissance-style mansion belonged to the apothecary Claude Huvé and his family. It is attributed to the renowned architect Philibert Delorme, who is famous for designing several French châteaux, the tomb of François 1er at Basilique Saint-Denis, and a section of the Louvre in Paris. Although relatively small (and...

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Chartres Hotels

See all 23 Hotels in Chartres

Chartres Restaurants

  • Macarons à Chartres

    On our way to Chartres Cathedral, some friends of mine from NYC & I stopped at this great macaronerie/chocolaterie they highly recommended called La Chocolaterie!We decided to pop in here for breakfast (hey, macarons & tea are breakfast food, right?). They have oodles of different types of macarons as well as a lovely tea room upstairs.Besides...

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  • It's not a Caribbean restaurant!

    The music was Caribbean, the cuisine pure French and the bread fabulous. When you see it from the outside, it looks like a Cuban or Caribbean restaurant. However, when you go inside, the menu is pretty French.This is from their web site: "Bar - Cocktails – Cuban restaurant. Latino atmosphere - salsa – cigar cellar – salsa lessons on Friday...

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  • Best pancakes

    A very popular place indeed. All the inside tables were filled so if you wanted to eat something here, you had to sit outside. As it was not such a nice day, sitting outside was not an option, so we waited for a table. Crepes filled with chocolate.

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Chartres Nightlife

  • The Cathedral After Dark

    Aside from eating a good French meal or a postprandial glaces , the most exciting thing to do in Chartres is to go over to the Cathedral as dusk turns to dark and watch the lights pick up the structural beauties of the facade and the finest Romanesque Tower (the South one) in the world. A Jacket if it is cold outside

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  • bar

    very friendly bar the boss is Flo (my friend) and you will spend an excellent time in this bar. the terrace is beautiful and during summer time you won't move from this terrace. as you wish all is permitt there !!!!!

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  • Chartres Hotels

    23 Hotels in Chartres

    147 Reviews and Opinions

Chartres Transportation

  • Train / Bus to Chartres

    Chartres is found about 100 km south west of Paris. The easiest and most pleasant way to reach Chartres from Paris is by train. The train departs from Gare Montparnasse. If you are driving, there are two possible routes. You can take the A10 motorway and then get off on the A11, or if you want to avoid tolls you can take the RN10.

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  • Getting to Chartres

    The easiest way to get to Chartres from Paris is by train. The two cities are connected by regular train (i.e. not TGV), and one or two trains depart every hour. The journey takes 1hr to 1hr15m depending on the train and the ticket is fairly inexpensive. In Paris, these trains arrive and depart from Gare Montparnasse.

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  • Need to take the train?

    Taking the train to Chartres is quite easy and not that expensive. The journey takes one hour to cover the distance of 88km from Paris.

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Chartres Shopping

  • Sovenir Shop

    At the West end of the cathedral itself is a small shop. Here tourist can buy sovenirs post cards and books. You can also get little gift items for friends.

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  • Brick a brack

    Clementine sells "old world" charm. A lovely place to browse for that something special from yester-year.

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  • Souvenirs

    Walking from the station to the cathedral, you will pass this little souvenir shop where you can quickly hop in and buy something nice and/or special for the people back at home or even for yourself

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Chartres Local Customs

  • Dog potty area

    I though this was really cute - it was a place to take your dog to have them go potty - much nicer than having them go just anywhere. It even had its very own sign.

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  • The Encounter of the 3 Living & the 3...

    Also illustrated on the wall of the church in Meslay-le-Grenet (see our Off the Beaten Path Tips), is the legend of the three roistering young knights who are returning from a hunt when they encounter three skeletons who speak to them with the warning "that which you are, we were". I have seen a similar depiction in a 14C mural in the Campo Santo...

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  • The Origins of the Danse Macabre

    In the 14C European humanity was beset by intense widespread random death from rampaging war and pillage, plague and famine. As these events subsided in the 15C, the only places of social congregation (and amusement and distraction) were churches and some fairs. From before Roman times and continuing today, the living are exploited by exhibitions...

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Chartres Tourist Traps

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    by jnyvegas Written Jan 25, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Not a tourist trap but if you stop by hopefully they can lead you in the right direction. The office is right infront of the cathedral.

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Chartres What to Pack

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    More Jambs

    by Goner Written Jun 12, 2004

    Miscellaneous: Take binoculars with you, that way you can see the intricate stained panels in the windows and the story they tell.

    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture
    • Architecture
    • Historical Travel

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Chartres Off The Beaten Path

  • St.-Pierre Church: The Next Step in...

    St.-Pierre is less than 0.8 km from the Cathedral to the South, down the hill and up the next but a smaller one. (It is approached in our Walk Travelog). It is a mixture of styles being started in the 12C and continuing for almost 200 years with modifications. It has an old unadorned Romanesque entrance and bell-tower that was re-used. The roof of...

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  • Meslay-le-Grenet: The Old Wooden Church

    This 15C Church is an example of a double nave hall church. It ha a fine wooden pulpit and a ship-keel wooden roof which is inscribed with coats-of arms of nearby ancient aristocracy. The walls are covered by two levels of primitive murals of the late 15C. The upper level contains the Passion and the legend of the the Encounter between the Three...

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  • Meslay-le-Grenet: La Danse Macabre

    Just 15 km from the center of Chartres is this town of 160 persons. In the "town" is a 15C wooden church whose walls are decorated with finely drawn figures illustrating that nobody can escape the Black Death or extrapolated that we all must die sometime. This visit is only possible for independent travellers who have their own vehicle (owned or...

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Chartres Favorites

  • Interesting Things in Every Street

    These few pictures give little flavour of this old city.Plenty of fun to be had just wandering the streets and keeping the eyes open.

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  • Stained Glass (and Glass Origins)

    Glass is an amorphous noncrstalline solid and has great plasticity which increases with temperature. Working sand (a silicon dioxide source) into glass undoubtedly was discovered (invented) around primitive kilns or hot fireplaces (about 3000BC). The Romans developed the manufacture of glass and their artefacts include many glass containers, some...

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  • Henry Adams and Other Guides to Chartres

    Henry Brooks Adams (1838-1918) was the fourth son of a congressman and ambasador to England as well as grandson and great-grandson of two presidents. Aside from a stint as an Assistant Professor of History at Harvard and a multivoume seminal work in American History, he led a pasive life at the edge of high level politics. He was relatively rich as...

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Explore Deeper into Chartres
Porte Saint-Yves
Things to Do
Cathédrale de Chartres: la Façade Sud
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Cathédrale de Chartres: la Façade Nord
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(ex-) Église Saint-André
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Maison de la Voûte
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(ex-) Église Sainte-Foy
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Cathédrale de Chartres: les Vitraux
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la Cathédrale de Chartres: Interior
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Cathédrale de Chartres: la Façade Occidentale
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la Cathédrale de Chartres
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Cathédrale de Chartres: Sixth time's the charm?
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Saint-Pierre
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Chapelle Saint-Piat
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Cathédrale de Chartres: Pavillon de l'Horloge
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Parloir aux Bourgeois
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Jardins de l'Évêché
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l'Eure et ses Ponts
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Rue des Écuyers
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Quartier aux Juifs
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Ancien Evêché (Musée des Beaux-Arts)
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Maison Saint-Yves
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Ancien Hôtel-Dieu
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Porte Guillaume
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Hôtel de Champrond
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Ancien Séminaire Saint-Charles (Archives)
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Enclos de Loëns
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Maison Romane
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Escalier de la Reine Berthe
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Maison Canoniale du Cloître Notre-Dame
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Maison Canoniale Henri III
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Église Saint-Aignan
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Maison du Saumon
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Marché aux Légumes
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Hôtel des Postes
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Société Archéologique d'Eure-et-Loire
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Hôtel Montescot (Hôtel de Ville)
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Les Bibliotheques de Chartres
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Cathedrale de Notre-Dame de Chartres
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Tourist office
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Visit the Stained Glass Center and Museum
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Map of Chartres

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