What is the Paris Catacombs ? Tours Tickets and Facts Guide

The Paris Catacombs are an underground ossuary that contains the remains of over six million people. They are one of the most popular tourist attractions in Paris, and for good reason. The Catacombs are a fascinating and unique place to visit and they offer a glimpse into the city’s rich history.

In this blog post We will provide you with a comprehensive guide to the Paris Catacombs including information on tickets tours and facts

This guide is written by a travel blogger who has personally visited the Paris Catacombs and has a deep understanding of the history and significance of this unique attraction.

By the end of this blog post You will have everything you need to know to book a tour of the Paris Catacombs including ticket prices start times and what to expect. You will also learn about the history of the Catacombs and the millions of people who are buried there.

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What are the Paris Catacombs?


The Paris Catacombs are an underground maze of tunnels originally quarries which were transformed into a unique ossuary during the 18th century They house the remains of approximately six million people creating an eerie and awe-inspiring subterranean world.

Which Paris Catacombs Tour is Right for You?

paris catacombs

The best tour for you depends on your preferences budget and interests If you are a history buff you might opt for a guided tour that provides in-depth insights into the Catacomb’s past If you are short on time and want to see more of Paris a combination tour could be the way to go So choose the tour that aligns with your desires and embark on your underground adventure.

Why Visit the Catacombs?

Visiting the Catacombs in Paris is an experience that’s etched into memory for its profound historical significance artistic beauty and surreal adventure As someone who has explored its depths I can attest to the allure of this unique underground world First and foremost the Catacombs offers a captivating journey through Pariss history it is a place where you can witness how the city coped with its overflowing cemeteries in the 18th century leading to the creation of this subterranean ossuary The sheer scale of the Catacombs housing the remains of around six million people underscores the historical importance of this site.

Do I need a tour guide Visit the Catacombs?

While you don’t necessarily need aVisit the Catacombs visit the Catacombs having one can significantly enhance your experience The Catacombs can be quite intricate with a labyrinthine layout that may be disorienting for first-time visitors A knowledgeable guide can provide historical context and share fascinating stories and navigate you through the maze of tunnels They bring the history of this unique site to life offering insights that you might miss on a self-guided visit However if you prefer a more independent exploration or have a limited budget it is entirely possible to explore the Catacombs without a guide It ultimately comes down to your personal preferences and the kind of experience youre seeking.

How much are Catacombs tickets in Paris?

Ticket prices vary depending on the type of tour and your age. Standard adult tickets cost around 29 euros, while guided tours can range from 35 to 90 euros. Children under 18 often enter for free with an adult.

How can I buy Catacombs tickets in advance?

You can purchase tickets in advance through the official Catacombs website or from authorized resellers. Buying tickets ahead of time is highly recommended, especially during the peak tourist season.

What time are Paris Catacombs tickets released?

Tickets for the Catacombs are usually released for booking well in advance. You should check the official website or authorized ticket vendors for specific release times and availability.

How to Get Last-Minute Paris Catacombs Tickets?

If you find yourself in Paris without tickets consider visiting early in the morning or during the offpeak seasons Be prepared to wait in line if necessary.

What Is Inside the Catacombs of Paris?

The catacombs are not just a collection of bones They also house sculptures inscriptions and unique artwork made from the bones themselves demonstrating the artistic and cultural aspects of this underground world

How long does a typical catacombs tour last?

Most guided tours last approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour, giving you a comprehensive experience without being too lengthy.

7 Best Paris Catacombs Tours With Ticket Cost and Timing Guide

  1. Paris: Catacombs Entry & Seine River Cruise with Audio Guide
  2. Paris: Catacombs Entry & Seine River Cruise with Audio Guide
  3. Skip-the-Line: Paris Catacombs Guided Tour with VIP Access
  4. Paris Catacombs: VIP Skip-the-Line Restricted Access Tour
  5. Paris Catacombs Skip-the-Line Guided Tour and Special Access
  6. Paris Catacombs: Skip-the-Line Special Access Tour
  7. Paris: Small-Group Catacombs Tour with Skip-the-Line Entry

Paris: Catacombs Entry & Seine River Cruise with Audio Guide

  • Dinner Cruise Option: Some tour operators offer an exclusive dinner cruise option. As the sun sets, you can savor delectable French cuisine while gazing at the illuminated wonders of Paris from the water.
  • Timing: These dinner cruises typically commence in the evening, providing a romantic setting for a memorable night out.
  • Ticket Cost: Prices may vary depending on the tour provider and the level of dining experience you choose. It’s a worthwhile splurge for an unforgettable evening.

Skip-the-Line: Paris Catacombs Guided Tour with VIP Access

  • Timing: This tour is a flexible option, often available at various times throughout the day. You can easily fit it into your schedule.
  • Ticket Cost: Prices may fluctuate, but the convenience of VIP access ensures you won’t spend valuable time waiting in line.

Paris Catacombs: VIP Skip-the-Line Restricted Access Tour

  • Timing: These tours typically operate at specific times during the day, so check the schedule when making your reservation.
  • Ticket Cost: The premium cost associated with VIP access grants you the privilege of avoiding queues and enjoying exclusive access to certain parts of the catacombs.

Paris Catacombs Skip-the-Line Guided Tour and Special Access

  • Timing: You’ll find tours available at various times throughout the day, allowing you to choose a slot that suits your agenda.
  • Ticket Cost: Prices may vary, but the benefits of bypassing lines and gaining special access are well worth the investment for a more immersive experience.

Paris Catacombs: Skip-the-Line Special Access Tour

  • Timing: Tours are offered at different times throughout the day, providing flexibility for your visit.
  • Ticket Cost: Depending on the tour operator, costs can differ, but the special access feature ensures you make the most of your catacombs exploration.

Paris: Small-Group Catacombs Tour with Skip-the-Line Entry

  • Timing: Small-group tours run at various times during the day giving you the freedom to select the most convenient slot for your plans.
  • Ticket Cost: While prices may vary, opting for a small-group tour provides an intimate and highly informative experience.

30 Facts of Paris Catacombs

Here are 30 interesting facts about the Paris Catacombs:

  1. Artistic Arrangement: The bones in the catacombs are artfully arranged into patterns and designs making them more than just a macabre collection.
  2. Skeletal Murals: Some parts of the catacombs feature intricate murals created using human bones.
  3. Bones from Cemeteries: The catacombs contain the remains of millions of Parisians transferred from overcrowded cemeteries.
  4. Beneath the City: The catacombs stretch for about 200 miles underneath the streets of Paris.
  5. Former Quarries: Before becoming an ossuary the catacombs were limestone quarries used to build many of the city’s iconic structures.
  6. Secret Tunnels: During World War II the catacombs served as a hiding place for the French Resistance.
  7. The Empire of Death: The entrance to the catacombs is inscribed with “Arrête c’est ici l’empire de la Mort” (Halt this is the realm of Death).
  8. Movie Setting: The catacombs have been used as a backdrop in various films including “As Above So Below.”
  9. Skulls and Crossbones: Many areas are adorned with skull and crossbones motifs reinforcing the catacombs’ eerie atmosphere.
  10. Banned Access: Unauthorized exploration of off-limits catacomb sections can result in fines arrests and danger.
  11. Symbolic Layout: The layout of the catacombs is designed like a series of interconnected chambers, galleries and tunnels.
  12. Geological History: The tunnels in the catacombs showcase different layers of sediment providing a unique geological history of the region.
  13. Resting Place of Notables: The catacombs house the remains of notable figures like the leaders of the French Revolution such as Robespierre and Danton.
  14. Invasion Prevention: During the early 19th century the catacombs were used as a means to prevent invading armies from breaching the city.
  15. Occupied by German Soldiers: In both World Wars the catacombs were occupied by German forces who used them as underground barracks.
  16. Paranormal Stories: The catacombs are surrounded by various legends and ghost stories adding to their mystique.
  17. Temperature and Humidity: The catacombs maintain a cool consistent temperature of around 57°F (14°C) and 80% humidity.
  18. Water Table: The catacombs are positioned just above the high water table of the River Seine which helps maintain their structural integrity.
  19. Churches and Chapels: Some chambers within the catacombs are designed to resemble churches and chapels.
  20. Catacombs Souvenirs: In the 19th century visitors could purchase souvenirs like crosses made from bones.
  21. The Black Plague: The move of remains to the catacombs was partly prompted by a resurgence of the Black Plague in the 18th century.
  22. Criminal Hideouts: Over the centuries criminals and outlaws used the catacombs as hideouts.
  23. Graffiti Galore: Many walls in the catacombs are covered in graffiti from various time periods.
  24. Labyrinthine Network: The catacombs are a labyrinth and getting lost is a real risk if you venture off the official tour path.
  25. Limited Visitor Access: Only a small portion of the catacombs is open to the public while the majority remains inaccessible.
  26. Mushroom Farming: Some areas of the catacombs have been used for illegal mushroom cultivation.
  27. Tunnels Underneath Tunnels: There are many subterranean spaces within the catacombs that are accessible only through smaller tunnels.
  28. Sound Amplification: The acoustics in certain parts of the catacombs can amplify even the faintest of sounds creating a haunting experience.
  29. Protected Heritage: The Paris Catacombs have been a classified historical monument since 1862.
  30. Cultural Inspiration: The catacombs have inspired literature art and popular culture capturing the imagination of visitors and artists alike.


As we draw the curtain on this comprehensive guide to the Paris Catacombs we hope we have ignited your curiosity and provided the essential information for an unforgettable journey. The catacombs with their enigmatic history artful bone arrangements and myriad secrets offer a unique perspective on Paris’s past.

With our insights into ticket options and the best timings to visit you can maximize your adventure while avoiding the hassles. Whether you choose a skip-the-line ticket or a VIP access tour the catacombs are waiting to be explored.

We have recommended Seine River cruises to add an extra layer of enchantment to your visit. From romantic dinner cruises to small-group guided tours these experiences complement your exploration of the catacombs.

The Paris Catacombs are more than just an attraction; they are a journey into the heart of the city’s history and a testament to its resilience. With the right knowledge, preparation and a spirit of adventure you are ready to embark on a truly unique Parisian experience. So venture underground and uncover the captivating stories hidden within the depths of the “Empire of Death. Your adventure awaits and it promises to be both haunting and unforgettable.

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