Vezelay Abbey

In the serene Burgundy region, Vézelay Abbey rises majestically, a testament to spiritual history and architectural wonder, beckoning pilgrims and travelers alike. Read more

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Visit Vezelay Abbey in 2024

Vézelay Abbey, a UNESCO World Heritage site, stands atop a hill in the quaint village of Vézelay. This masterpiece of Romanesque art and architecture was a major pilgrimage site in the Middle Ages, its church purportedly housing relics of Mary Magdalene. The abbey church, also known as the Basilica of St. Mary Magdalene, is famed for its beautifully sculpted capitals and the play of light through its nave, which would illuminate the sanctuary on the feast of Mary Magdalene. Its hilltop setting offers stunning panoramic views of the surrounding countryside, which is peppered with vineyards and rolling hills. The abbey has been a beacon for religious and cultural gatherings for centuries, also playing a historical role during the Crusades. Today, visitors can explore the spiritual heritage, take guided tours to learn about the basilica’s storied past, and wander through the charming village streets of Vézelay.
Vézelay Abbey remains an iconic symbol of historical and spiritual significance, offering a peaceful retreat into history, art, and the enduring legacy of faith. It’s a place where the echoes of the past meet the artistic soul of the present, all set against the timeless beauty of Burgundy's landscapes.

47.464993, 3.744406 Open in Google Maps

The most famous sights
What to do in Vézelay Abbey

The Basilica of St. Mary Magdalene

The heart of the abbey, this basilica is renowned for its stunning nave, intricate tympanums, and detailed Romanesque and Gothic sculptures.

The Crypt of Vézelay Abbey

A sacred space beneath the basilica, it was once believed to house the relics of Mary Magdalene.

The Vézelay Village

Stroll through the medieval village of Vézelay, with its historic houses, artisan shops, and inviting eateries serving regional specialties.

The Musee Zervos

Housed in a beautiful historic building, this museum presents a collection of modern art, including works by Picasso and Miro.

The Morvan Regional Natural Park

Nearby Vézelay, this park offers a natural escape with its forests, lakes, and trails perfect for hiking and nature walks.

The La Maison du Visiteur

A visitor center that provides insights into the history of the abbey and the symbolism behind its architecture.

Vézelay Hilltop Views

Take the opportunity to appreciate the expansive views of the Burgundian landscape from the hill where the abbey sits.

The Annual Vézelay Music Festival

A celebration of classical and sacred music within the abbey, attracting music lovers and performers worldwide.

The Pilgrim's Path

Follow the historic route taken by medieval pilgrims on their way to Santiago de Compostela, starting at Vézelay.

The Vézelay Art Galleries

Explore the local art scene through various galleries showcasing the works of regional and national artists.

What else to visit
In and around Vezelay Abbey

La Rochepot Chateau (90.23 km)

Perched majestically atop a hill in the Burgundy region, Château de La Rochepot beckons with its fairy-tale allure, showcasing the splendors of medieval French architecture in all its glory.

Beaune (95.65 km)

Beaune, the wine capital of Burgundy, beckons with its medieval charm, world-class vineyards, and colorful rooftops—a hidden jewel in the heart of France's famed wine country.

Dijon (98.83 km)

Dijon, the historic capital of Burgundy, France, is a city that blends rich medieval history with a vibrant cultural life. Famous for its mustard, fine wines, and architectural beauty, Dijon promises a truly authentic French experience.

Palace of Fontainebleau (130.21 km)

Nestled in the heart of a vast forest, the Palace of Fontainebleau stands as a monumental testament to French royalty's opulence and grandeur. A fusion of Renaissance and classical styles, it has been a favored residence of monarchs for centuries.

Palace of Fontainebleau (130.24 km)

The Palace of Fontainebleau, a royal residence for over seven centuries, stands as an unparalleled showcase of French history, art, and architecture.

Clairvans Castle (156.43 km)

Clairvans Castle, a hidden gem in the picturesque landscape of France, offers a journey through time. This charming castle, with its rich history and tranquil surroundings, is a perfect embodiment of French elegance and heritage.

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