Settled in the southwestern France, Lourdes is one of the most popular places in the world for a pilgrimage. Each year, millions of tourists visit its religious sites. Either visiting Lourdes for a pilgrimage or just for an unforgettable vacation, Lourdes is best visited with family. Find out the 10 best things to do in and near Lourdes, France below!
1. Visit the most religious place in Lourdes: The Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes
The Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes is the main reason tourists from all over the world come to visit Lourdes. You must not miss this one, since it is the most religious site in Lourdes. You may not want to visit some of the other tourist attractions in Lourdes, but The Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes is a must-visit. St. Bernadette Soubirous experienced her first vision in 1858 in the grotto, the spot for pilgrimage. While visiting the spiritual place, you may spot a long line of tourists waiting to take a dip in the freezing Lourdes water.
The Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes
Address: 1 Avenue Mgr Théas, 65108 Lourdes, France
Website: The Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes
2. Enjoy the most breathtaking view of Lourdes from Funiculaire du Pic du Jer
Do you want to know what the view of Lourdes is like from above? Wonder no more as you can enjoy the most breathtaking view of the town from the Funiculaire du Pic du Jer. Located approximately 1,000 meters (3,281 ft) above the city, the Funiculaire du Pic du Jer is the summit in the Hautes-Pyrenees. In addition to the panoramic view of Lourdes, you can also enjoy the views of its neighboring town Tarbes as well as the valley of Argeles Gazost. The journey to the Pic du Jer is quite a long one — three hours. But, the three hours is nothing compared to the magnificent view you are going to admire.
Funiculaire du Pic du Jer
Address: 59 Avenue Francis Lagardère, 65100 Lourdes, France
Website: Funiculaire du Pic du Jer
3. Say hello to friendly animals at La Ferme du Bon’Air
Photo is only for illustrative purposes
A visit to the La Ferme du Bon’Air is a must if you and your family want to say hi to friendly animals such as ponies and guinea pigs. You are allowed to pet them too. A fun time is guaranteed if you come to this farm, which is one of the non-religious tourist attractions in Lourdes. You can have a picnic at the farm in the spring or summer. There is a cafe for the whole family to enjoy lunch together.
La Ferme du Bon’Air
Address: Route de la Forêt, 65100 Lourdes, France
Website: La Ferme du Bon’Air
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4. Visit an extremely popular museum in Lourdes: the Pyrenean Museum
The Pyrenean Museum is housed in the Château-Fort De Lourdes (see next point). The museum is a place where you can see collections of regional artifacts and artworks such as paintings and drawings. After exploring the museum, go outside if you want to see the traditional models of Pyrenean houses, a reconstruction of Pyrenean cemetery, and a beautiful botanical garden.
Address: 25 Rue du Fort, 65100 Lourdes, France
Website: Pyrenean Museum
5. Wonder at the Château-Fort De Lourdes
Château-Fort De Lourdes is an old castle perched at the top of a rocky cliff. You will be able to enjoy beautiful views of the Pyrenees and Marian Sanctuary from the 1,000-year-old castle. Some remains from the era are still preserved inside the castle, if you are interested to take a look. To reach the castle you need to go hike up a steep ascent. If you think that it’s a quite difficult route, you can simply take the elevator.
Château-Fort De Lourdes
Address: Hautes-Pyrénées département of France
Website: Château-Fort De Lourdes
6. Study the background of St. Bernadette Soubirous’ life at Moulin de Boly
St. Bernadette Soubirous, who was originally from Lourdes, spent the first 10 years of her life at Moulin de Boly. Situated in the heart of Lourdes, the house witnessed the birth of St. Bernadette Soubirous in 1844. Visiting the house, you will get a more comprehensive background of her life. The bedroom in which St. Bernadette was born is still there.
Moulin de Boly
Address: 12 rue Bernadette Soubirous, 65100 Lourdes
Website: Moulin de Boly
7. See wax figures at Musee De Cire De Lourdes
Musee De Cire De Lourdes depicts the stories of Jesus Christ and the life of St. Bernadette Soubirous in the form of wax figures. There are 18 scenes and approximately 100 life size wax figures in total. The museum is an important tourist site, especially for Catholic travelers. Every Catholic family is recommended to visit the wax museum.
Musee De Cire De Lourdes
Address: 87 Rue de la Grotte, 65100 Lourdes, France
Website: Musee De Cire De Lourdes
8. Go through the history of Lourdes at Le Petit Lourdes
It is always interesting to learn some history about the place you are visiting. If you visit Le Petit Lourdes, you are going to have a journey to Lourdes in the past. Le Petit Lourdes, complete with its houses and rivers, is displayed in a nice setting with the flowers and trees surrounding the old part of Lourdes.
Le Petit Lourdes
Address: 708 Rue des Sources, 14200 Hérouville-Saint-Clair, France
Website: Le Petit Lourdes
Activities near Lourdes
Admiring the unique topography of Pyrenees is easy from a distance, yet you will only learn to appreciate their intimate beauty when you choose to make your descent down the Canyon of Saugué. The path to the heart of Vallée de Gavarnie would not be an easy one; participants would need to complete a series of abseils and slides down the slippery rocks as well as jumps off the overhanging ledges. Meanwhile, those with a penchant for a thrilling adventure could take up the challenge of leaping off Pich Gaillard, a 50-meters (164 feet) waterfall, into the roaring tidal basins.
Canyon of Saugué near Gavarnie
Duration: full day
Price: 100 USD
Get in your single-seater kayak or two-seater canoe and set off to discover the hidden, wild and undiscovered sides of Haute Pyrenees. Glide over the mirror-smooth lake and absorb the idyllic scenery at a leisurely pace - peak upon peak, chain upon chain of jagged mountains, guttered and channelled by winter streams, blanketed from head to toe with untouched forests. It all ends with a picnic in the wild; throw down a blanket and enjoy the wildlife-rich landscapes and breath-taking views.
Canoeing down the Gave de Pau
Duration: 2 hours to full day
Price: 36 USD
The only thing you buy that makes you richer is traveling
Everyone’s got a purpose in life, that is to live it. How? By experiencing life to the utmost. You will have a richer life by traveling. You are going to spend money on it, but it’s worth it. Once you travel, you are going to want to travel to other new places. Just ensure that Lourdes makes it to the top of the list of the destinations you have to visit while you still can.
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