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Underground Church of St Jean
21 rue St-Jean, 16390 Aubeterre-sur-Dronne Route Planner
The Green Guide

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Opening hours

Jun-Sep: 9.30am-noon, 2pm-7pm; rest of year: 9.30am-noon, 2pm-6pm - closed 1 Jan, 25 Dec

Description

The fascinating and enigmatic church, Église St Jean, is one of France's few monolithic churches and the highest. Carved out of the hillside's limestone rock as of the 8C, the church boasts 17m-high rounded vaults, which tower above a monumental reliquary in the form of a holy sepulchre and a necropolis also hewn out of the rock. It is well worth going up to the deambulatory, perched beneath the vaults, to get an overview of the whole church, which has a highly spiritual ambience.

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