Paris Catacombs

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Paris Catacombs: Our most recommended tours and activities

  • Paris Catacombs Skip-the-Line Ticket with Audio Guide

    1. Paris Catacombs Skip-the-Line Ticket with Audio Guide

    Discover a world beneath the streets of Paris and see tunnels and rooms decorated with the human bones and skulls of around 6 million Parisians. The Paris Catacombs were originally a quarry with hundreds of kilometers of tunnels burrowed beneath the streets of Paris. When the cemeteries of Paris became overfilled, the city started moving the dead into the Catacombs.  Avoid lengthy lines and the hassle of ticket counters – simply show your voucher, start your self-guided tour and explore the “City of Lights” at your own pace.

    Amazing experience! Only not so much as skipping the line as standing in it when enough people do the same but the wait for us was really short.

  • Paris Catacombs: Tour

    2. Paris Catacombs: Tour

    Join your knowledgeable, informative guide on this tour through the underground passages and special rooms of the Catacombs. Get the most out of your visit as you listen to unique insights from your guide and together, navigate this dark but curious space. Learn the intriguing stories of those who worked, visited, and have been laid to rest here over the centuries, including the secret societies who still visit today. Discover the history of the labyrinthian passages, from how they were initially mined for limestone to how they are now home to the bones of more than 6 million former Parisians. The remains that you’ll walk past were carefully moved here in the 18th century, in a discreet operation to transfer them from the unclean and overflowing cemeteries of the city center.

  • Paris Catacombs: Special Access Small Group Tour

    3. Paris Catacombs: Special Access Small Group Tour

    Get fast track entry to the underground cemetery of the Paris Catacombs, composed of miles of underground tunnels lined with the skulls and bones of some 6 million Parisians. Join a local guide and explore the catacombs in a small group of no more than 19 people. Each room reveals ever more ornate and macabre bone decorations. Hear the unbelievable story of how the catacombs were built, and the massive project that was undertaken to move bones from around the city to this point. Your special access status means the guards will also open gates just for your group, letting you into areas such as a secret chapel decorated with skulls and femurs. The Paris Catacombs contain bones representing some 2,000 years of history, and their construction was a unique civil engineering project that helped give rise to the modern-day city.

    Kaitlyn was an amazing tour guide! We got so so stuck in awful traffic and she managed to stall 15 minutes for us and we met her in the catacombs! I’m sure this is not usually possible but as this has been a dream of mine for years I’m so so happy she was able to today! She was so informative I took lots of notes so I hope she didn’t think I was being rude being on my phone so much! The whole tour was so entertaining and she took the effort to get to know all our names which was a special plus. Thanks so much for all you did Kaitlyn! Whatever you’re earning you deserve a raise! Lots of love Shan and Greg 10/09 tour x

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

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

    Paris is commonly known for its beauty and romance. However, far beneath the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre is an entirely different, intimidating world. In the Catacombs of Paris there is an inscription above a doorway that reads: Beware of the Realm of Death. This is a suitable warning to prepare you for a memorable, once-in-a-lifetime experience. Access to the Catacombs is extremely limited as only 200 people are allowed to enter the site at a time. Consequently, lines can be very long and waits can be up to 2 hours. Privileged, skip-the-line access lets you save time and energy to make the most out of this personalized visit. Nearly 300 kilometers of tunnels and narrow paths stretch below the streets of Paris. Originally, the Catacombs were limestone quarries, hollowed out for the construction of the most famous bridges and buildings in the city. Beginning in the 18th century, the Cat...

    Our tour was with City Wonders and it was amazing! Our tour guide, Vic was full of stories and information, and made everything fascinating. She had a great sense of humor and her English was flawless. I can't recommend this tour enough. We are usually budget travelers, but this tour was worth every penny!!!

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

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

    Beneath the dazzling lights of modern Paris lie the devilishly dark catacombs. On this small-group tour have skip-the-line entry and exclusive access to restricted areas. Explore the 200-mile maze of remains from roughly 6 million Parisians with an expert guide.  Your Paris Catacombs tour begins with a bone-chilling descent down the complex’s 133-step staircase. Your guide will explain how these tunnels were used in the 13th-century to quarry limestone for buildings as grand as Notre Dame. As you make your way through the narrow tunnels, learn why bad weather in the 1780s forced Parisians to bury their dead here. During the tour, have plenty of time to admire the Catacombs’ disturbingly detailed bone decorations. From religious iconography to hearts, workers found many ways to “beautify” the bones housed in this complex. There is, however, one decoration that will really make your spin...

    We had a great experience! The guide (Ferit) was very informative, professional, and with a great sense of humor. Cracking jokes throughout the whole tour which only made it more enjoyable. The whole history of the catacombs was explained and shown to us with additional interesting stories about the people who built them. We got access to restricted areas in which we found even more interesting stuff. Over all I would 100% recommend this tour and of course Ferit the wonderful guide.

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

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

    Beneath the streets of Paris there is another, darker side to the city that few get to see. Twenty meters (and more) below street level, the galleries of the Paris Catacombs extend for over 200 miles - a subterranean maze under the city that many are unaware of as they stroll along the streets above. Initially quarried to provide limestone for the construction of the famous Parisian buildings and bridges, the Paris Catacombs are now home to the bones of more than 6 million former Parisians. Their remains were carefully moved here in the 18th century, in a discreet operation to transfer them from the unclean and overflowing cemeteries of the city center. Overcrowding in these cemeteries led to improper burials, open graves and unearthed corpses, spreading disease (and a few horror stories!) into the surrounding areas. Nowadays, wall after wall of stacked bones, and some more slightly mac...

    Matthew was a wonderful guide who gave historical information in a lively manner and shared behind the tour information to further enhance our experience. Seeing the number of bones in the catacombs is an overwhelming experience, but the behind the scenes part of the tour added so much more. The history shared as to why the catacombs were created was fascinating. I was disappointed when other tour participants did not seem to understand the need to tip your guide. I guess some don’t realize after the admission fees and the tour company takes its cut, there’s not much left over for the guide. REMEMBER TO TIP YOUR GUIDE IF YOU ENJOYED YOUR TOUR! 10% of the tour cost is reasonable

Planning Your Visit

  • Best time to go

    If you want to avoid waiting for hours, your best bet is to book your tour in advance and skip the ticket line. Failing that, arriving 30 minutes to an hour before it opens (Tuesdays to Sundays from 10:00AM to 8:00PM) will cut the wait significantly.

  • How long does it take?

    A good (legal!) tour of the Catacombs should take two to three hours.

  • What to wear

    The chances of getting dirty are high, so dress down and wear comfortable shoes. Rest assured that there'll be at least six million people down there looking worse than you do!

Good to know

  • When should I visit?
    Tuesday to Sunday, 10:00 AM-8:30 PM
    Holiday hours may vary
  • Is it expensive?
    €10 entry for the Catacombs and the exhibition, which can be combined with entry to the crypt for €15 altogether.
  • Will I need a guide?
    It will definitely help. It's worth checking out our best-selling tours.
  • How to get there
    Denfert-Rochereau, accessible on metro line 2 as well as RER B, is the nearest station.
  • Additional information
    *Wear good walking shoes, but fancy clothing is not recommended!
    *Last entry is at 7:00PM

Other Sightseeing Options in Paris Catacombs

Want to discover all there is to do in Paris Catacombs? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Paris Catacombs

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 8,390 reviews

Matthew was a wonderful guide who gave historical information in a lively manner and shared behind the tour information to further enhance our experience. Seeing the number of bones in the catacombs is an overwhelming experience, but the behind the scenes part of the tour added so much more. The history shared as to why the catacombs were created was fascinating. I was disappointed when other tour participants did not seem to understand the need to tip your guide. I guess some don’t realize after the admission fees and the tour company takes its cut, there’s not much left over for the guide. REMEMBER TO TIP YOUR GUIDE IF YOU ENJOYED YOUR TOUR! 10% of the tour cost is reasonable

Kaitlyn was an amazing tour guide! We got so so stuck in awful traffic and she managed to stall 15 minutes for us and we met her in the catacombs! I’m sure this is not usually possible but as this has been a dream of mine for years I’m so so happy she was able to today! She was so informative I took lots of notes so I hope she didn’t think I was being rude being on my phone so much! The whole tour was so entertaining and she took the effort to get to know all our names which was a special plus. Thanks so much for all you did Kaitlyn! Whatever you’re earning you deserve a raise! Lots of love Shan and Greg 10/09 tour x

Catacombs were awesome. The audioguide was very informative and definitely worth it. the groups without it definitely walked through way faster and didn't enjoy it as much. the guide and catacombs provide a very interesting snapshot into the history of France. highly recommend!

This tour is a must! It was over our expectations and our guide Michelle was the best. It is so worth taking a private tour because you get to see some areas that are closed to the public and you get so much more information.

Amazing experience! Only not so much as skipping the line as standing in it when enough people do the same but the wait for us was really short.