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"Paris Ile de la Cite Medieval Private Walking Tour: Notre Dame
"Paris Ile de la Cite Medieval Private Walking Tour: Notre Dame Sainte Chapelle and Conciergerie""Notre Dame Cathedral now over 850 years old still reigns as a titan of Gothic architecture. Scour its exteriors of delicately sculpted stone and imposing bell towers. Decode the secret messages of the façade and unearth long-forgotten voices from the past. Learn about the church’s famously hunchba the devilish myth of its main doorways and how the French Revolution almost destroyed the cathedral—literally! Inside Notre Dame discover striking stained glass windows
From EUR109.00
Ile de la Cité Walking tour with Typical French Lunch and a Boat cruise
"The First Part: Walking on the Island of La Cité (Duration: up to 15 hours)The tour starts from the Metro station Pont Neuf where you will get to see the oldest bridge of Paris receiving the name of ""New Bridge"" and the statue of Henri IV - an old charmer - inviting you for a walk. You will see the Dauphin square filled with history of love mysteries of Templars and grape vines growing there once. You will see the Palace of Justice which guards the Laws of France and remembers Napoleon Bonaparte pass by the cruel Conciergerie the ancient royal residence in Paris turned into a prison at times of the French revolution then you way will lead you by the Clock Tower
From EUR79.00
Paris Pass Including Entry to Over 60 Attractions
"Save time as you skip the long queues and save money with free entry to over 60 Paris sights and attractions. With your Paris Pass there is no need to use cash simply show your pass for fast entry. Choose from a two four or six day pass. Paris Pass includes: A free map of Paris 1-day hop-on hop-off tour Free entry to over 60 sights and attractions (see 'View Additional Info' below for full list) Additional special offers and including the Louvre Pantheon
From EUR128.00

Conciergerie Tips (75)

Palace To Prison

English speakers will connect the name of this forbidding pile by the Seine with those helpful people who take special care of guests at cushy hotels. Right they are: a concierge was once the steward of a royal palace, and such was the case here.

There were palaces on Île de la Cité as far back as the 6th century, and the Conciergerie and Sainte-Chapelle are the medieval survivors of the last of those. You start your visit in the Hall of Men-at-Arms: a huge room of vaulted naves where several thousand of the king's household took their meals. A graceful spiral staircase near the entrance once led to a large banqueting room for more distinguished folks on the floor above. At the far end is a guard room and section of the hall used to accommodate the poorest of prisoners when the function of the pile was converted, in the late 14th century, from palace to penal institution.

It was this dark era of the Conciergerie's past that is illustrated in the rest of the self-guided tour. Over the next 5 centuries thousands of unfortunates, both rich and poor, political and petty offenders, were incarcerated within these walls. Wealthy or titled individuals were given considerably better quarters than destitute commoners who were left to rot or die of disease in dark, filthy dungeons. Those in between could purchase themselves a bit cleaner cell with a bed if they had the means to do so. Regardless of status, to be a guest of the Conciergerie often meant torture, a sentence of execution or both. Imprisonment and pre-execution processes are explained through printed narratives and re-creations of cells, offices and common spaces. Of interest to many visitors is the chapel on the site of Marie-Antoinette's cell and a reproduction of what her chamber may have looked like.

La Conciergerie is included on the Paris Museum Pass otherwise a ticket includes entry to both the prison and Sainte-Chapelle. You need to be able to climb a flight of stairs to explore the exhibits. See the website below for ticket prices, hours, etc. This is especially impressive from the Seine when lit up at night!

goodfish's Profile Photo
Oct 24, 2016


Last visit May 2016

The Conciergerie is a former palace, then prison, on the Ile de Cite. From the 10th-14th centuries it was the seat of the King of France, it was abandoned in 1358 by Charles V when he moved the palace to the Louvre. It became the first Paris prison in 1391 and, despite it's long regal history, became famous during the time of the French Revolution when many were detained here before being taken to part company with their heads, compliments of Madame Guillotine. The Conciergerie's most famous "guest" was Marie Antoinette, you can see a reconstruction of her prison cell, the place where her cell was located is now the Marie Antoinette chapel.

Included on the museum pass and easy to combine in a morning with Notre Dame and St. Chapelle.

Dabs's Profile Photo
Jun 08, 2016

The prison under the Revolution.

In a rather small part of the Conciergerie reconstructions of some rooms of the prison under the Revolution can be seen like the clerk's and concierge's offices, the room where condemned prisoners were stripped of their personal belongings and had their hair cut in their neck before being grouped by twelve in the courtyard where a cart would take them to the scaffold with the guillotine.

A series of cells show the various categories of prisoners. The poor called "payeux" because they were sleeping on straw "paille" put on the floor, the "pistoliers" who paid some "pistols" (french money of that time) for a cell with a bed.

Actually there were many more cells than these few reconstitutions. Up to 600 prisoners could be kept in the prison.
The large room of the Guards was compartmentalized in cells and horizontally divided by a floor at middle height to increase the number of cells for men. Around the Grand Préau were also cells for men. The cells for women surrounded the "cour des femmes". The fountain the visitors can see now is the one where the female prisoners washed their clothes.
During the "Terreur" reign of terror (1793-94) 2.700 persons were prosecuted and 2278 were condemned to death. In 1794 an average of about 40 people were guillotined every day.

breughel's Profile Photo
Jan 03, 2015

La Conciergerie

The Conciergerie (pronunciation here) began as a royal palace in the Middle Ages. It was later used as a prison, both before and during the French Revolution.

In the years of the Terror, 1793 and 1794, more than 2600 prisoners were tried and convicted in this building, and sent from here to the guillotine.

Two centuries later nothing remains from this period, so some scenes have been set up, using life-size effigies, to show what it might have been like to be imprisoned here. One of the rooms has an effigy of Queen Marie Antoinette dressed in black, with her back to us, praying and being watched over by a guard. (All of these reconstructions look rather phony, in my opinion, so I didn’t take any photos of them.)

What I liked best about my visit to the Conciergerie was a chance encounter in the Cour des femmes. A group of a dozen or more deaf people were standing in a circle carrying out an animated conversation in sign language, in complete silence except when someone said something funny and they all laughed. One man was obviously the teacher or guide, but the others all asked questions or made comments in a very open and friendly atmosphere.

Next review from July 2012: Crypte archéologique du parvis Notre-Dame

Nemorino's Profile Photo
Jun 08, 2014
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Conciergerie - Medieval Halls.

As there was a queue at the Sainte Chapelle at 50 m from here I entered the Conciergerie where there was nearly nobody. I could admire in all tranquillity the medieval halls. Surprising is the fact that the floor of these halls from the 14th century is well below street level. In the 19th century the embankments of the nearby Seine were raised as well as the rest of the Île de la Cité.
The huge hall build under Philippe le Bel in the begin of the 14th c. is called salle des Gens d'Armes - Hall of Men-at-Arms and is a fine example of Gothic secular architecture.
It was heated by four large fireplaces still existing.
On the right of the entrance is a spiral staircase leading to an upper floor, now disappeared, which was the ceremonial hall for the Capetian monarchy.
Behind the Hall of Men-at-Arms, on the right is the Guards room.
These medieval halls have been restored in the year 2000 and new lightings installed.
The place is really spectacular and worth the visit as the "best" is to come with the revolutionary halls and the prison.

The name "Conciergerie"dates from the end of 14th c. when King Charles V left this residence for the Louvre Palace. He appointed a concierge (steward) endowed with legal powers to run the former palace transformed a century later into a prison .

Open every day: 9h30 - 18 h
Closed: 1/1, 1/05, 25/12.
Price (2014) 8,50 €
Reduced price 5,50 € 18 - 25 years. Free till 17 years old.
Combined ticket with la Sainte Chapelle : 12,50 € and 8,50 €.
Tickets can be bought and printed on line at

breughel's Profile Photo
Feb 05, 2014

The 76 days of Marie-Antoinette.

Marie-Antoinette was transferred to the Conciergerie after the escape bid from the prison of the Temple organized by the baron de Batz. She was cruelly separated from her 8 year old son and her 15 year old daughter as well as her sister in law Madame Elisabeth. She was only allowed to bring with her a little dog.
It was known that the Conciergerie was the anteroom of death and yet in Austria her Habsbourg family and the emperor Francois, her nephew, remained insensitive in front of the death threat which weighed on the queen of France.

At the beginning in her dungeon Marie-Antoinette received certain regards but an escape bid awkwardly tried by de Rougeville hardened her detention conditions. All her personal objects were removed and she was transferred in a new humid, low, narrow and dark cell.

Marie-Antoinette remained 76 days at the Conciergerie. When she was called in front of the Revolutionary Tribunal on October 14, 1793; she was a sick woman with grey hair.
At the time of her splendour the Queen of France had shown so much spendthrift, lack of thought, looseness that she contributed seriously to the fall of the monarchy. In front of the tribunal Marie-Antoinette showed courage and firmness and faced with dignity the infamous charges of incest on her son presented by Jacques Hébert the substitute of the public prosecutor.

Her cell, as can be seen now, is a reconstitution on part of the actual site of her dungeon. She was permanently guarded by two gendarmes who were not allowed to talk to her.

Open every day: 9h30 - 18 h
Closed: 1/1, 1/05, 25/12.
Price (2014) 8,50 €
Reduced price 5,50 € 18 - 25 years. Free till 17 years old.
Combined ticket with la Sainte Chapelle : 12,50 € and 8,50 €.

breughel's Profile Photo
Feb 05, 2014

Bringing the French Revolution to Life! *1er

La Conciergerie serves a number of purposes, historically as a palace and prison, currently as part of the Palais du Justice and a museum.

The museum chronicles the history of the French Revolution as well as the life in the prison. Several artifacts remain from the most famous prisoner, Marie-Antoinette.

shrimp56's Profile Photo
Feb 27, 2013

Palace or Prison?

The Conciergerie has a mixed past to say the least. It's been both a medieval palace and a grisly revolutionary prison.

The first King of all the Franks, Clovis, built a royal residence on this site in the 6th century and later the first Capetian King of France, Hughes Capet, established a royal council and government here. Later Kings extended the palace and it gradually became a prestigious symbol of the French monarchy on the Ile-de-la-Cité. But in 1358, Charles V moved across to the Right bank of the Seine and the Louvre Palace, leaving a keeper or concierge to run the palace and from 1391, the prison which was then established here.

A number of famous prisoners of state were detained here, including the fanatical catholic assassin of Henri IV, Ravaillac. Other less well known prisoners would have made up the bulk of the numbers of the poor souls incarcerated here though and their conditions depended greatly on the wealth and prestige they had. The wealthiest could pay for a private cell with furnishings such as chairs, beds, desks, books and writing materials. The poorest, or pailleux from the hay ( paille ) that they slept on, had appalling conditions and would have been confined to dark, damp, vermin-infested cells called oubliettes (literally "forgotten places").

Later, during the French Revolution, the revolutionary tribunal sat here and the prison came to house over 4000 prisoners, including Queen Marie-Antoinette before her execution and ironically, just a little later, the Revolutionary leaders Robespierre and Danton before they met Madame La Guillotine.

The Conciergerie is open to visitors every day from 9.30am to 6pm except New Years Day, 1st May and Christmas Day. Admission is €8.50 or a combined ticket with Sainte Chapelle just down the street is €12.50. Both are included in a Paris museum pass. The main entrance and ticket office is on Blvd du Palais, just 2 minutes walk (maximum) from Cité Metro station.

Inside the Conciergerie you can visit the splendid "Hall of Men at Arms" which is a wonderful example of secular gothic architecture and Marie-Antoinette's Chapel which was erected in 1815 on the orders of her brother-in-law, the restored Louis XVIII, on the exact spot on which her prison cell had been. Outside in the courtyard is the Women's Courtyard where prisoners washed their clothes in a fountain (which is still there) and waited in groups of 12 to be carried of in a cart to the steps of the guillotine.

Visiting the Conciergerie immediately after Sainte Chapelle is a strange experience. You go from the wonder and beauty of that place to the grim horror of the history of this in just a few steps.

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Aug 30, 2012
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Beautyful building, former prison

Sadly the building was covered for big parts of it because of the renovation of the outside walls. But the inside was beautyful aswell. There is also a museum of the prison witch was at the building. One room has names of all the people killed by guillotine, some rooms are made as prison cells, one is the cell of Marie Antoinette. She is sitting at her cell and praying.
The museum was hard to find, my husband wanted us to leave and me to belive there is no museum of prison. I didn´t belive him, and I was right! You must go to the museum shop and walk through it to find the entrance to the prison part.
The wax dolls aren´t very good at all, but I think it was interesting to see the place anyway. And it´s included at the price. I think it was interesting anyway.

You get in with Paris museum pass and you can skip the longer line with it.

Turska's Profile Photo
Oct 23, 2011


Squat and dominant, the Conciergerie sits on the river banks of the Ile de Cite.

Imposing and used as a prison during the Revolution - residents included Marie Antoinette; assassin of Marat, Charlotte Corday (the image of Marat dead in the bath more famous than the name of his assassin) and, ironically, leaders of the revolution, Robespierre and Danton before they faced the guillotine.

leffe3's Profile Photo
Dec 14, 2010

la Conciergerie

The mediaeval castle on île de la Cité, known as la Conciergerie, was built in the 13th century as the royal palace. When in the 14th century the royal residence was transferred to the Louvre, la Conciergerie was converted into a prison, and remained so through the French Revolution when it was the location of many executions. Numerous historic figures were imprisoned here, including Marie Antoinette and Napoléon III. Today, la Conciergerie is part of the Palais de Justice complex, but a section of it is open to the public as a museum. Of interest are several sections, including the 14th century Gothic Salle des Gens d'Armes, the largest surviving mediaeval hall in Europe (see attached photos), and the reconstructed prison cell of Marie-Antoinette.

MM212's Profile Photo
Dec 06, 2010

The Conciergerie

The Conciergerie is located on Ile de la Cité and was built by Phillipe the Fair (1284 - 1314) in the early 14th century.
This palace was part of the residence of the kings before the Louvre.
After that the Concierge rented it out to shopkeepers.

In 1391, the Conciergerie became the first prison of Paris. During the French Revolution, nearly 3,000 condemned spent their last days here. They were then transported to Concorde Square and many others Paris Squares (there was only one guillotine in Paris but portable) to be guillotined.

Today you can visit the Prisoners' Gallery, where the cells have been reconstituated according to those time.

Opening hours :
March 1 to October 31: from 9.30a.m. to 6p.m.
November 1 to February 29: from 9a.m. to 5p.m.

Prices :
Adults: 7 €
Joint ticket Conciergerie and Sainte-Chapelle: 11 €

kris-t's Profile Photo
Dec 04, 2010

Things to Do Near Conciergerie

Things to Do

Pont Au Change

The Pont Au Change is again one of the 37 bridges across the Seine River in the Paris Section of the river. This bridge connects the Île de la Cité from the Palais de Justice and the Conciergerie, to...
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Things to Do

Palais de Justice

The huge complex which is the Palais de Justice sprawls across an entire block of the Ile de la Cite not far from Notre Dame. The current building was built to replace the Royal Palace of Louis IX...
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Things to Do

Île de la Cité

This little park at the western (downstream) tip of the Île de la Cité was named after the French King Henri IV (1553-1610), who was nicknamed “Le Vert-Galant” because of his many mistresses that he...
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Things to Do

Pont Notre Dame

The Pont Notre Dame is one of the 37 bridges along the Seine River in Paris and it connects quai de Gesvres on the Rive Droite with the quai de la Corse on the Île de la Cité. of which it is the...
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Things to Do


Last visit May 2016 If you are at Notre Dame, St. Chapelle is very close and definitely worth a visit. Work on the two storied chapel started in 1246, built to house the relics of the Passion of...
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Place Dauphine

This lovely place was originally built on three separate islands that were joined together to make the Ile de la Cité as we know it today. Ordered by Henri IV and named for the future Louis XIII, the...
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Getting to Conciergerie


2 Boulevard du Palais, 75001 Paris


  • Sunday 09:30 to 18:00
  • Monday 09:30 to 18:00
  • Tuesday 09:30 to 18:00
  • Wednesday 09:30 to 18:00
  • Thursday 09:30 to 18:00
  • Friday 09:30 to 18:00
  • Saturday 09:30 to 18:00