Chapelle de Notre-Dame du Haut in Ronchamp, France.

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Chapelle de Notre-Dame du Haut

Top choice in The Jura Mountains

Bringing to mind a ship's sail or a lighthouse summoning the faithful, modernist Chapelle Notre-Dame (1955) roosts hilltop above the small town of Ronchamp, 20km west of Belfort. Visionary architect Le Corbusier was initially reluctant to design the sanctuary; views of the Jura Mountains from this age-old Marian pilgrimage site changed his mind.

Stepping inside the concrete chapel instantly cuts off the outside world, while rough interior walls and sombre lighting make the stained-glass windows seem all the more jewel-like.

Also on site are various outbuildings, including an oratory, pilgrim accommodation and a small Peace Pyramid honouring locals lost in WWII.

Regular direct trains connect Ronchamp with Belfort (€5, 20 minutes). Change trains in Belfort for links to/from Besançon.

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