We all know the Bastille monument and what it stands for, as it is even the French national holiday. This chapel is actually the infamous counterpart of the story: it’is the place where Marie Antoinette and Louis XVI are commemorated.
Although the corpses of the royals are officially buried in the Cathedral of Saint Denis (a banlieue with a rough reputation, just north from Paris), this is where their bodies were first put after they were guillotined.
Nowadays, France seems to have a bit of an ambivalent attitude towards their royals. Versailles is one of the biggest, best exploited tourist attractions, but the end of royalism is for obvious reasons a rather humble commemoration. However, I did find out that there is actually still a small minority in France that is in favor of the royals, although I’m not sure how that could practically still be a possibility.
It was not the history that drew me to this place, but its pretty garden and intimate architecture – both are quite in contrast with the majestic boulevards surrounding it. Located in Paris’ 8th district, known for business and fancy shopping, it was pure luck that I stumbled upon this little sanctuary of royalty.
A simple entrance costs €6, but if you’re a history geek you can opt for a guided tour/conference (English is possible) for €13. It’s very pretty, but if you’re visiting lots of places in Paris, this little park and chilling on one of its benches might be just what you need!