Basilica St Magdalen : Michelin's recommendations
This admirable church is set on a hill at the top of the village of Vézelay. The present basilica, one of the most beautiful in France, is partly Romanesque and has a vast, luminous nave with splendid statues. It was built in homage to St Magdalen whose relics are kept here. The façade, dating from 1150, is in pure Romanesque style, dominated by a high bell-tower, rebuilt by Viollet-le-Duc. In the fine narthex, which appears like a first church with its mighty pillars, is situated the masterly tympanum of the central doorway where Christ sits enthroned in majesty. It is one of the most famous of the Romanesque period. The capitals of the nave are also particularly interesting. With a rarely equalled perfection, 12C sculpture triumphs here. The church mainly dates from this period but was finished in 1215 in Romanesque-Gothic style. In the late 13C, the discovery of other relics of St Magdalen in St Maximin in Provence, confirmed by a Papal Bull, cast troubled water in people's minds: pilgrimages grew rarer, fairs and markets lost their importance and the basilica was forsaken.
- Address : Place de la Basilique F - 89450 Vézelay89450Vézelay
- Prices : free of charge