Paris Catacombs Tour with Secret Rooms & Privileged Access

Skip the line and gain exclusive access to secret parts of the Catacombs

Travel Flexibly 5 / 5 See All 116 Reviews · 1.50h · Paris, France

Want see France’s most unusual attraction without the long wait? How about peeping into secret rooms that the general public doesn’t get to see? This VIP skip-the-line tour gets you straight into the medieval underworld of the Paris Catacombs, and you’ll gain privileged access to restricted parts of this vast underground tunnel network. Along the way, your expert local guide will bring the Catacombs to life with stories of their dark history and eerie folklore.

  • Thumbnail
  • Meeting point at Cafe Oz
  • The Gateway to Hell
  • Catacombs tunnels
  • Barrel of Passion
  • Restricted Areas
  • Lower Catacombs
  • End inside Catacombs
  • The Barrel of Passion
  • Secret rooms, off-limits to the public
  • Cataphile stories and insights

You'll meet your guide and the rest of your small group near the Denfert-Rochereau Metro Station, just a short walk from the entrance to the Catacombs. The general admission line can be incredibly long, especially during busy times, but you'll be able to breeze past and start exploring straight away with your skip-the-line ticket.

Your guide is an expert in all things Catacombs, and over the next 1.5 hours you'll learn about the dark history of this unique underground tunnel network. You'll see the macabre artwork that adorns its walls, and you'll even gain access to two hidden rooms which are off limits to the general public. There's no better way to see Paris' darkest attraction!

Paris Catacombs Tour Description

Your 1.5-hour tour includes:

  • Skip-the-line Paris Catacombs tickets

  • Entry to two restricted areas of the Catacombs

  • A super-knowledgeable English-speaking guide

  • A maximum group size of 19

Skip-the-Line Paris Catacombs Tickets

Wait times to enter the Paris Catacombs can be up to 3 hours! That’s time you could spend strolling along the Champs-Élysées, climbing the Eiffel Tower, or watching the world go by in some impossibly stylish Paris café.

We'll have your Paris Catacombs ticket ready when you arrive, and our tour lets you skip the line completely so you can start exploring the city’s dark underworld without the long wait.

Catacombs of Paris - The Gateway to Hell

Your tour starts at the entrance of the Catacombs, just south of the "Barrière d'Enfer" (which means the Gates of Hell!). After entering, you'll immediately descend a staircase deep below the streets of Paris and into the medieval underworld of the Catacombs—often referred to as the world’s largest grave.

As you begin to explore this vast underground tunnel network, your guide will explain the creation of the Paris Catacombs and how it became a burial place for so many of the city’s dead. You’ll also get to see two incredibly eerie areas of the Catacombs that are restricted from public access. These areas are so exclusive that a guard will need to come and open the old gates with a key. How's that for a VIP experience?

Paris Catacombs History

As you explore the various tunnels and rooms of the Catacombs, your expert "cataphile" guide will tell you their history and how they came to be. Tunnels have existed under Paris since the 13th century. They were once used to mine the limestone that helped build the city and also as ossuaries for burying human remains. But it wasn’t until the 17th century that the Paris Catacombs we see today really began to take form.

Paris was expanding rapidly and began to build over the now abandoned tunnels. Sound like bad planning? That's because there was no planning. A few major ground collapses later, something had to be done.

At the same time, the population was growing and the city’s cemeteries were overflowing. So, Louis XVI decided to kill two birds with one stone and approved the reinforcement and extension of the tunnels for use as a burial place for the dead. In an eerie twist, the estimated 6 million bodies buried here actually help to support the structure itself.

Catacombs Artwork, Architecture, and Bones

The Catacombs are one of the last secrets of Paris, and your tour will uncover some of the mysteries held within their walls. You’ll also see some truly unique and macabre artwork as you pass through the labyrinth of corridors and gates, along with a type of architecture not found anywhere else in the world.

And yes, you will see thousands upon thousands of bones, arranged by artists and architects to make the space more "livable."

What you get with this tour
Friendly English-speaking guide
Skip-the-Line Catacombs tickets
Restricted areas access
Barrel of Passion
Explore lower Catacombs
Max 19 people
Guide gratuity
Hotel pick-up
Food and drink
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116 total reviews

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5.0/5 (based on 116 reviews)
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1 stars
Excellent!
14 June 2024
M
Reviewed by
Melissa Lucas

We really enjoyed this tour, and our tour guide Rémy. Very informative and interesting to get to the restricted areas with a professional tour.

08 June 2024
T
Reviewed by
Travis Williams

An Unforgettable, Macabre, and Timeless Experience !
14 March 2024
L
Reviewed by
Luis Espericueta

Our descend into Paris' catacombs, where bones whisper tales of the past, was impressive. We Explored dimly lit tunnels adorned with macabre arrangements, a haunting testament to the city's history. A visit here is a journey through time, a solemn yet mesmerizing experience.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What to bring?

We always recommend comfortable walking shoes on all of our tours. The temperature inside the Catacombs is always around 14°C/57°F, no matter what time of year, so it's a good idea to bring a light sweater. Also, the only bathroom break is at the end so please show up prepared and ready to tour!

I've heard about the Paris Catacombs calling strikes at the last minute. Does this really happen?

On occasion, employees at landmarks in Paris, such as the Paris Catacombs, decide to strike. Often, the intention to strike is not communicated to tour operators until the day of the strike. In the event that the Paris Catacombs go on strike when your tour scheduled, we will do our best to accommodate you on another Catacombs tour the following day. If this is not possible, we will provide you with a full refund.

What to bring?

We always recommend comfortable walking shoes on all of our tours. The temperature inside the Catacombs is always around 14°C/57°F, no matter what time of year, so it's a good idea to bring a light sweater. Also, the only bathroom break is at the end so please show up prepared and ready to tour!

What if I have concerns about my mobility on this tour?

While it doesn't cover a huge distance, you will be on your feet for the length of the tour (1.5 hours). You should also expect some uneven floors and old stone stairways, so please think carefully and make sure this tour is right for you.

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