Senlis Travel Guide

  • Notre Dame Cathedral @ Senlis
    Notre Dame Cathedral @ Senlis
    by balhannah
  • Things to Do
    by balhannah
  • The old city
    The old city
    by balhannah

Senlis Things to Do


    This was a building that caught my attention in Senlis. It was different to the other old buildings, in that the stone work of orange & cream gave a chequered effect. It isn't the original station, as that was burnt by German troop's in 1914, and then demolished. The new building was built in 1922. In 1950, the rail passenger rail service closed,...


    The Royal Castle at Senlis, dates back to the time of the Merovingians when it was a Carolingian Castle. It was the birthplace of the Capetian dynasty, also known as the House of France, one of the largest and oldest European royal houses. After the accidental death of the last of the Carolingians, Louis V, Hugues Capet was elected king there in...


    As it happened, we were in Senlis on a Tuesday, which is a Market Day, the other is Friday.The market is held in the old part of the town, stretching along many of the streets. I found the majority was food that was being sold, but there were other items too. It is held in the morning.I thought it quite unusual to see a Triperie van, perhaps the...


    This Cathedral is still being used, even though it was built in the 12th century on the orders of King Louis XII and Thibault, Bishop of Senlis. I was able to view the outside and inside of what is one of France's oldest, narrowest and smallest Cathedrals. Is the Spire the most beautiful in France, I'll let you make up your own mind, but pundits...


    The Church of St. Pierre is a pre-Roman building. Over time, architectural alterations have taken place, including the addition of a choir and transept in mid 13th century, rebuilt in 16th century, and the addition of a steeple. The facade dates back to 1546 and the Renaissance square tower is 16th century.In 1791, the Church was abandoned and has...


    In these very old towns and cities, this is what I enjoy doing, as you never know what your going to find. The streets are very narrow and footpaths not the best, so be aware of cars. You will see mansions, false doors, old walls, squares, gardens, churches, palaces and more. It is an old Roman city, so you need to keep your eyes open.

  • MONUMENT De L'Amitie Franco-Marocaine

    This Monument was originally known as the Victory & Peace Monument, later being renamed "the Monument "of the Franco-Moroccan friendship." The Monument shows a Moroccan Spahis shaking hands with a French Cavalryman. Originally it was in Casablanca, but was dismantled and shipped to Senlis by the French Navy in 1965. It was decided to put it on the...


    This is what I suggest you do first, as Senlis is a very old city and has quite a few sights to see, and lovely old, narrow cobblestoned streets to wander through and get lost!Pick up the free guide book [see photo]. It gives details on the sights and a good walking map.The tourist office is easy to find. as its located near the Notre Dame...

  • Morris Dancers

    Morris dance is a traditional English form of folk dance. It is performed mainly using rhythmical walking and hopping and dancers can carry swords, sticks handerkerchiefs or bells. It is traditionally performed by men.Imagine my surprise when I came across a group of Morris Dancers in the middle of Senlis. They were local fellows putting on a...

  • Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Senlis

    Senlis Cathedral (Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Senlis) is a Roman Catholic cathedral formerly the seat of the Bishopric of Senlis - until 1801 when the area was passed to the Diocese of Beauvais.The cathedral was built between 1153 and 1191; its 256-foot-tall (78 m) south tower dates from the 13th century. Its transepts were rebuilt between 1530 and...

  • wander around

    Senlis is the kind of place where it makes sense just to spend a couple of hours walking around the old narrow streets of the town centre, ideally stopping midway for a coffee + croissant and to watch the world go by. My exploration took place right after breakfast, so I wasn't quite ready for coffee etc, but I was tempted anyway.The good thing was...

  • Go Further and See the Church of...

    One block east of the apse of the cathedral is the Church of St.-Pierre which was built even earlier than the cathedral, at the beginning of the 12C. Although the bases of both towers are Romanesque, the church was redone in the 17C with a heavy Renaissance Tower dome on the right and a display of Gothic-like decorations covering the facade. The...

  • Go To the South Transept Facade

    This beautiful example of Flamboyant Gothic was created between 1530-56 by P. Chambiges. Every yard is a gem from the pinnacled gable below to the windows above and the tower-like buttresses laterally.

  • Study the Cathedral's Main Door

    The main portal of the West facade is devoted to the Virgin. The tympanumhas her Assumption while below it on the lintel are scenes of her dormition with angels raising her. This is fine bas relief. There are 8 column-statues of biblical patriarchs. First on the left is Isaac being restrained from his sacrifice by an angel. These statues have more...

  • Visit the Cathedral of Notre Dame

    Dedicated to the Virgin (like the one in Paris), this Notre Dame was begun in 1153 in Gothic style, 10 years earlier than Paris. The West facade has a main door that has jamb column statues of that period, like Chartres. The towers were not finished. When money became available in the 13C the South tower was completed with a spire, the first in...


Senlis Hotels

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Senlis Restaurants

  • iaint's Profile Photo

    by iaint Updated Jul 7, 2009

    By the time I reached my hotel and got checked in, I was too late & too hungry to go looking for food in town, so I just dived into the restaurant which is part of the Ibis hotel next to mine.

    The place was busy and I was expecting to wait awhile, but service was excellent. My steak was not wonderful - cooked the way I asked for, but not great quality. Still, I was fed and watered!

    Verdict - fine if you have no choice.

    Favorite Dish: Mmm...tell you next time.

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Senlis Local Customs


    April 2013, and we were in a wet and cold Senlis. It was Spring, yet the weather hadn't warmed like it should have, it still was like Winter. People told us it was a long, cold winter. We could see that. Most of the trees were still leafless, but the flowering Peach trees located on both sides of many streets, were mostly in bloom. These were very...

  • Church Weddings

    While not an unique custom, church weddings are very common in France and encountered frequently if one is sightseeing at churches. Here the "get-away" car has been designated by the best man witha bouquet of flowers in the parking lot beyond the chevet of the church.

  • Senlis Hotels

    4 Hotels in Senlis

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Senlis Off The Beaten Path

  • balhannah's Profile Photo

    by balhannah Updated Jun 11, 2013

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    Crepiy-en-Valois is a "cite medieval" and is located only 27kms from Senlis. I think it is worth a visit. This old town, sits in a pretty position, high on a prominent piece of land. Houses date to the 14th & 18th centuries, many built by Royal officials. There's a Castle, Ramparts, Abbey, several Churches and a Museum on Archery.

    Crepy-en-valois Crepy-en-valois Crepy-en-valois
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