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A beautiful combination of Gothic and baroque style, the Saint William's Church, Strasbourg is one of the most ancient churches in the village. It is very popular among tourists for its perfect location along the III River, its ornate and simple exterior and opulent interior. Being a place with excellent acoustics, it is a venue for events and concerts, most notably Johann Sebastian Bach’s ‘Passions’. A major tourist attraction and ancient landmark, it is declared as a national monument of France.
This church is situated on one the little picturesque Places of Strasbourg, next to the current St-Etienne college. The first edifice built probably dates back to the 5th century AD, but unfortunately none of it has survived. The transept and the heart of the church that you can see today is what remains of the beautiful church built in the 12th and 13th centuries. The church was an important place for pilgrimage, being home to the tomb of Saint Attale, sister of the patron saint of Alsace, Saint Odile. The nuns of the convent also created hangings depicting their lives in detail, which can now be seen in the Museum of the Work of Notre-Dame (Le Musée de l'Oeuvre Notre-Dame).
Eglise Sainte-Madeleine was first built by nuns at the end of the 15th century, but was ravaged by fire in 1904. It was rebuilt, but only the heart of the church was original. You can admire a painting as well as a statue of the Virgin Mary from the 15th century. A bit further along the road, it is interesting to stop and have a look at the the ruins of a wall which date back to the start of the 13th century.
Located at the point where l'Aar and l'Ill converge, on the quays behind the university campus, Eglise Saint-Paul is inspiring due to its sheer majesty. Built in the 19th century, it looks a lot like a Gothic church, with its two pink sandstone beams rising to a height of 76 meters (249.3 feet). It was built for Alsace Protestants when Alsace was still German. Don't miss out on this mini cathedral!
Colourful leaded windows bathe the interior of Notre Dame in a light all its own. Some of the windows originated in the 12th and 13th centuries. The nave of the Gothic monument is unusually wide. The font and the 15th century pulpit are richly decorated. The large astronomical clock behind the pillar of the Last Judgement is also well worth seeing.
This is the town's primary building, its pride and its emblem. At 142 meters tall, it was, for a long time, the tallest building in Christendom. It was built entirely of pink sandstone from the Vosges area, between the 12th and 14th centuries. Its unique architecture (a single tower) lends it a surprising charm and even those who live in the city never tire of its beauty. The exterior is adorned with countless gargoyles and figures, and the enormous rose window on the front wall is a jewel of Gothic art. Inside, its vaulted ceiling cannot fail to impress, and the astronomic clock, built in 1547, comes alive with dancing figures every day at 12.30 pm. The organs and the medieval stained-glass windows are also striking. If you climb up to a viewing platform, the panorama of old Strasbourg is unsurpassed. The church is closed to visitors during mass. For information on admission rates and other details please see the website.
330 steps lead up to the 66 m high platform on top of the cathedral with an unrivalled view of the old town.
This church is a reminder to the people of Strasbourg of a terrible waste. Where this church now stands, there used to be a majestic Dominican church, the second biggest religious building in Strasbourg after the cathedral. For some time, Maitre Eckart and his disciple, Jean Tauler, used to teach there in the 14th century. Under Louis XIV, the Dominican church became the new headquarters of the Protestant parish, which had previously been based in the cathedral; hence the name 'Temple Neuf' (New Temple). It was also the home of the town library which held over 400 000 works and manuscripts, many of which were unique. All this was ravaged by fire during the siege on the town in 1870. A church was built in its place between 1874 and 1877 in a Roman-Byzantine style. A very imposing structure, it houses the only remainder of the old church, the gravestone of Tauler...