Cathédrale St-Étienne


This vast Gothic cathedral and its stately 68m-high bell tower dominate Auxerre's skyline. The choir, ambulatory and some of the vivid stained-glass windows date from the 1200s. The 11th-century Romanesque crypt is ornamented with remarkable frescoes, including a scene of Christ à Cheval (Christ on Horseback; late 11th century) unlike any other known in Western art. In July and August an hour-long son et lumière (sound-and-light) show is held Wednesday through Saturday at 10pm inside the cathedral.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Yonne attractions

1. Abbaye St-Germain

0.18 MILES

This ancient abbey with its dramatic flying buttresses began as a basilica above the tomb of St Germain, the 5th-century bishop who made Auxerre an…

2. Hôtel de Ville

0.18 MILES

Flanked by colourful half-timbered buildings, Auxerre's town hall forms the centrepiece of the medieval centre's most attractive square.

3. Tour des Prisons


The striking late-15th-century Tour des Prisons is the lone remaining tower from the original stone fortifications surrounding Auxerre's medieval Abbaye…

4. Tour de l'Horloge


In the heart of Auxerre's partly medieval commercial precinct, the golden, spire-topped Tour de l'Horloge was built in 1483 as part of the city's…

5. Église St-Pierre

0.22 MILES

Marked by Gothic architectural elements, this church between the river and the medieval centre is a prominent Auxerre landmark.

6. Église St-Eusèbe

0.34 MILES

Presided over by a 12th-century bell tower, this church is a convenient landmark in Auxerre's medieval centre.

7. Abbaye de Pontigny

10.13 MILES

Founded in 1114, Abbaye de Pontigny rises from the lush mustard fields 15km north of Chablis. The spectacular abbatiale (abbey church) is one of the last…

8. Église St-Martin

10.63 MILES

The 12th- and 13th-century Gothic Église St-Martin, first founded in the 9th century by monks fleeing the Norman attacks on Tours, is two short blocks…