Saint-Pierre de Montmartre

An unsung gem of a medieval church, Saint-Pierre started life in the 12th century as a renowned women's monastery.

TravelCurious Tip

This is a great place to visit if the Sacré-Coeur is too busy - it’s very calm inside, and can make quite a pleasant contrast.

Mons Martius

Now rather overlooked thanks to its more brash and famous neighbour the Sacré-Coeur, Saint-Pierre is the oldest church in Paris. It was built in the 12th century on the site of a 7th century Merovingian church: this in turn was built on the site of a Roman Temple of Mars, which gave the hill of Montmartre its name via the Latin Mons Martius (Mountain of Mars) - and four of whose columns today help to support the existing church.

Consecrated in 1147, it served as part of a large Benedictine nunnery, whose convents and other buildings no longer survive. The Benedictines moved elsewhere in 1680, and the last Abbess was guillotined during the Revolution.

Unsung beauty

The surviving small church has accrued a number of interesting medieval, 17th, 18th and 19th century alterations; more recent additions include the bronze doors, added in 1980, and its beautiful 1950s stained-glass windows.

Though only a small vestige of a once-great religious establishment, Saint-Pierre remains a fascinating and lovely sanctuary, and is less crammed with tourists than the Sacré-Coeur. The climb up provides fantastic views over surrounding Montmartre.

Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in Paris
Moulin de la Galette
A windmill in the historic Montmartre district that has been immortalised in works by Renoir and Van Gogh.
A vibrant and artistic neighbourhood once home to Renoir and Gauguin, offering spectacular views over the city.
French Boulangerie
Montmartre's pastry chefs and bakers are amongst the best in the world - and some of the best shops are hidden in plain sight.
Hearty brunch
Sit down with new friends and the bistro's local owner to indulge in a hearty, local brunch.
'I love you wall' Paris
A 40 square metres love-themed wall located in the romantic garden of the Square Jehan Rictus in Montmartre.
Bateau Lavoir
From 1889 the "Bateau-Lavoir" was the most famous place for artistic creation in the heart of Montmartre. A place to live and discuss for many painters, writers, actors and art sellers.

Related Tours

VIP Paris: Explore Paris in Half a Day by Private Car Tour
Experience Paris’ key sights and neighbourhoods on this relaxing private car tour. With your own guide and car, you will have the flexibility to focus on the things that you find most interesting. Stop off at your leisure and enjoy your tour in comfort without worrying about the weather or the queues. 

  • See the best that Paris has to offer with your own private car and expert guide.
  • Cruise past Champs ElyséesPlace de la Concorde and Notre Dame.
  • See the Arc de TriompheOpera GarnierPlace Venôme and the Musée d’Orsay.
  • Stop off at Dôme des Invalides and see Napoleon’s tomb.
  • Stop by the Louvre (outside) and get the best views of the Eiffel Tower.
  • End your tour with a wander through bohemian, picturesque Montmartre.
  • Car pick-up and drop-off from a place of your choice.
Start at the iconic Arc de Triomphe, a monument to those who fought and died during the Revolution and Napoleonic Wars and visit the Champs Elysées (end-point of Tour de France) and Opera Garnier (‘Phantom of the Opera’.) Next, see Place Vendôme (featuring a monument to commemorate the victory at Austerlitz in 1805), Place de la Concorde (the largest square in the city), the famous Louvre museum and the beautiful Musée d’Orsay, before visiting Napoleon’s tomb

Explore the wonders of the Latin Quarter and stand in awe of the gothic masterpiece that is Notre Dame Cathedral. Take in the outside beauty of Sainte Chapelle (featuring the most impressive stain glass windows in the world). Then, visit the quintessentially French Trocadero where you will have the opportunity to snap some beautiful photos and catch some great views of the world-famous Eiffel Tower.

To conclude this epic tour of the great city of Paris you will take a short walk to Montmartre: one of the most colourful and bohemian neighbourhoods, where you will learn more about the fascinating life and works of Renoir, Picasso, Gauguin, and Van Gogh, all of whom lived and worked here. The perfect way to experience the city if you have limited time, and also a great way to find out what to focus on for the rest of your trip. 

Tours can be adapted to suit your needs and interests, just get in contact with us!


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