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Medieval Travel Guide

Medieval Amiens

Here we are. Another wonderful day trip from Paris, this time to Amiens, on the river Somme. Another cathedral. And what a cathedral!
Amiens is also the town where Jules Verne wrote most of the works that made him famous.

How to get there:

By Train: Take the train from Paris Gare du Nord. There are about 5 to 6 trains daily, with the journey taking between 1h 6 min and 1h and 46 min, depending on the type of train. The round trip (aller-retour) is 17.90 Euros.
The Amiens train station is only 10 minutes away (walking) from the old town.
If you drive: Take your GPS preloaded with the Map of Europe.

Amiens Cathedral
Notre-Dame d'Amiens Cathedral

Notre-Dame d'Amiens Cathedral

The Gospel was first brought to the ancient city of Amiens by Saint Firmin, who suffered martyrdom there in 303 A.D. One of the Cathedral portals is bearing his name.

The magnificent Cathedral of Amiens was commenced in 1220, under King Philip II Augustus. The works were continued under his son, Louis VIII, who reigned for three years, between 1223 - 1226. In 1226, Louis IX (St. Louis) followed as the King of France, and, under his reign, the main work of the Cathedral was completed in 1269. 

In 1279, the relics of Saint Firmin were transferred here in the presence of Philip III the Bold, King of France and Edward I of England. 

Amiens Cathedral Labyrinth
Amiens Cathedral Labyrinth

In 1288, under the reign of Philip IV the Fair, the central stone of the labyrinth was laid. 234 m long, the labyrinth served as an initiation tour for the faithful following its dark colored lines.

Notre-Dame d'Amiens, one of the finest examples of medieval gothic architecture, is the largest cathedral in France, and the reference when studying and discovering the polychromy of the gothic portals.

The exterior is majestic and is covered with beautiful sculptures. Three portals occupy the whole of the western fašade. To the left is the St. Firmin Portal, in the middle is the Portal of Our Lord, and on the right is the Portal of Our Lady.

The great Rose Window of the western fašade, named "The Rose of the Sea" dates from the end of the 15th Century, and it also bears some Renaissance accents. His 13m diameter is in perfect harmony with the impressive size of the nave.

The Medieval Town

The most representative part of the old town is the picturesque quarter of Saint-Leu on the river Somme.

A view from the Saint-Leu Quarter in Amiens
Also named "The little Venice of the North", its small houses with their colourful fašades make you feel like being in a city from Northern Europe. Coffee houses, restaurants, crafts shops, antique stores, are the main attractions, drawing thousands of visitors every year.

You can get all the info you need at the Tourist Office:

Office de Tourisme
6, Rue Dusevel Amiens, 80000 France
Phone : +33 (0)3-22716050

Enjoy your vacation!

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