When staying in Luxembourg, you must visit its only cathedral, dominating the landscape of the city center. Named as the Parisian cathedral, the Cathédrale of Notre-Dame is a wonderful example of the architecture of the 15th-century and a significant symbol of the history and tradition of the country.
Stunning architecture and interiors
Luxembourg's cathedral was built between 1613 and 1621 by the Jesuits but has gone through various renovations and transformations, reflected in the different architectural styles. There are late Gothic and Renaissance aspects, and the North Gate has the most visible elements of semi-Renaissance and semi-Baroque style.
The cathedral is famous particularly for its thin, delicate black spires, for the 19th century and 20th century stained glass windows by artists like Louis Bariillet, and for its 17th-century nave. Some of the remarkable interior features include the incredible statue of Mary, the Consoler of the Afflicted housed in the cathedral since 1794, the choir carved in alabaster, stunningly decorated columns, and contemporary sculptures in bronze from well-known local artist Auguste Trémont.
The Cathedrale’s crypt holds graves of royals like a baroque parcel for John the Blind, King of Bohemia and Count of Luxembourg (1310-1346)—known to have been blind for a decade before dying in the Battle of Crecy. The tomb has a depiction of the Entombment of Christ in extremely good detail.
As well members of the Grand Ducal family and noted bishops rest here. The two lions depicted in the entrance of the crypt are also artworks of Auguste Trémont.
About the artist
Auguste Trémont spent his childhood in Luxembourg but moved to Paris where he was enrolled at the École des Arts décoratifs in 1909, and at the École des Beaux-Arts after the WWI. He was very interested in animals, as he thought it was the most difficult task to represent and his predilection was to portray felines. Tremont was particularly most active during the late 1920s to early 1930s. During this period, he sculpted two large lions that are nowadays at the entrance of the Luxembourg City Hall.
Admission to the cathedral is free; however, it is only opened when no service is happening. The cathedral hosts piano concerts regularly, so make sure you check on their schedule during your stay.
A recommended time to visit is during the fifth Sunday of Easter. A ceremony to honor the Virgin takes place from the church to the streets, and thousands of pilgrims attend to pray.