Saints-Michel-et-Gudule/Sint-Michiel en Sint-Goedele Cathedral
The history of the cathedral stretches back to the 11th century. At that time, there was already a Romanesque church on the site. An outline of that building is now marked on the current floor of the cathedral, following its most recent restoration in the late 20th century. The cathedral we see today was built between the 12th and 15th centuries and charts in detail the development of Brabantine Gothic architecture. The building’s importance is clear from the fact that the vast choir could accommodate 22 canons. While the church was only elevated to cathedral status in 1961, it has always played a leading role in the history of Brussels. It was the main church of Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, who had made Brussels the capital of his empire, and governors of the territory containing the city subsequently attended thanksgiving masses here. Napoleon, on passing through Brussels, also paid it a visit, as did King William I of the Netherlands on his coronation day. Indeed, in a similar tradition that has continued down the centuries, Belgium’s monarchs come here on the day of their swearing-in ceremony. With its magnificent tapestries, stained-glass windows and sculptures, the cathedral remains the backdrop for royal weddings and events such as official funerals, as well as the Te Deum held on Belgian National Day, 21 July, each year. Tourists and worshippers happily mingle day in, day out in this unique location so steeped in history. (Listed 05/03/1936)
Guided tours: Sat. at 11:00, 13:00 and 15:00 and Sun. at 14:00 and 16:00 (in French and Dutch). In cooperation with Église et Tourisme Bruxelles/Kerk en Toerisme Brussel.
Guided tours of the towers: Sat. at 10:30 and Sun. at 14:30. Admission charge of €10. By reservation only (Église et Tourisme Bruxelles/Kerk en Toerisme Brussel – tel.: 02 219 75 30 – email: email@example.com). Up to 10 people per tour.
Sat. & Sun., 10:00 to 18:00
Parvis Sainte-Gudule/Sint-Goedelevoorplein, Brussels
Accessible with assistance