Bayeux cathedral
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Take A Guided Tour of Bayeux Cathedral

The cathedral at Bayeux is simply stunning. If you want to take a tour you can join a paid visit via the tourist office, wander round for free on your own or purchase an information guide from the tourist office. Information about the tours are available here http://bayeux-bessin-tourisme.com/en/visiteguidee/the-cathedral-of-bayeux/

The information guide is by François Neveux and Claire Ruelle and is priced at 5,70 euros. It’s crammed full of professional photos, a plan and information about the history of the cathedral. It really will help you to guide you around the cathedral and the not-to-be-missed features.

A Self Guided Visit

If you want to do your own visit (with or without the booklet) then there are a few different doors you can enter though. I’d suggest using the entrances on the Western facade where the two towers rise majestically. There are three doors here. The red one in the middle is not usually open but the two smaller ones on either side are.

Take the left hand door and you’ll enter a small lobby area which dates back from the 11th century when the cathedral was originally built. The lobby area on the other side is the only other part of the cathedral which remains from this period. The left hand lobby houses these stone figures.

And, as you walk into the cathedral, this is the sight that greets you.

The majority of the cathedral dates from the 13th century which was built in a gothic style following major fire damage in the 12th century. The very ornate detail in the stonework arches along either side of the nave is amazing. There are monsters, a monkey catcher, lovers and lions all depicted in stone. Beware of a sore neck from gazing up at them.

I spent well over an hour just taking photos, admiring the stained glass windows, visiting the crypt and marvelling at the sheer beauty of the building. The photos don’t really do it justice but a visit is definitely recommended. If you visit Normandy, this has to be on your must-see list.

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