Luçon cathedral visitor guide

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The cathdral of Notre-Dame de l'Assomption is the principal historic monument in the town of Luçon, in the south of the Vendée department, in the north-west of France.

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France This Way review: although it is not perhaps one of the most remarkable cathedrals in France, the facade and cloisters are among the features that make Luçon cathedral interesting to visit

From the 7th century onwards a benedictine monastery has stood in the location of the current cathedral: in the early middle ages this was destroyed nd rebuilt several times, but nothing of the original buildings remains today.

It was in the 11th century that work on building a cathedral here started, and some elements of this original roman style building can be seen, such as the north transept wth its orginal porch and carved entrance.

view along the nave in cathedral in Luçon

Most of the current cathedral was rebuilt during the 13th -15th centuries, in part because of damage during the Hundred Years War, and is in the gothic style that was common at that time. The cloister was also added in the 15th century. Most of the original furnishings in the cathedral were destroyed or looted during the Wars of Religion in the 16th century.

In the second half of the 17th century the original belltower of Lucon cathedral collapsed, destroring part of the nave, so a project of rebuilding began: by this period, the classical style was popular, which explains why the facade you see today is in this style.

The last major change to the appearance of the cathedral was the consruction of the spire, in the 19th cetury and in the neo-gothic style: this spire is 85 metres high and the tallest in the Pays de la Loire region. This was damaged by a storm that hit France at the end of 1999 but has been repaired, and the entire cathedral has been restored in recent years.


Inside, the cathedral is quite small and of a traditional layout with a nave, two side naves with chapels, a transept and a choir area. The chapels on the south side are older, constructed in the middle of the 16th century, and the chapels on the north side were added in the 18th century.

Although there are limited furnishings inside the cathedral in Luçon, you can see several paintings and statues and various items of furniture, as well as two organs: the principal organ above the entrance was built in the middle of the 19th century by a well known organ constructor called Aristide Cavaillé-Coll.

Elsewhere in the cathedral there is a chapel of baptismal fonts, an altar with silver borders, the 18th century stalls and some (quite recent) stained glass windows.

The cloister is also attractive: these date from the 16th century and are in the renaissance style. Note in particular the part above the western gallery of the cloisters with their picturesque windows. You reach the cloisters through an ornate doorway in the classical style, dating from the 17th century.

cloisters in Luçon cathedral

Attractions nearby

For other highlights in the town see the Lucon guide. Most visitors will visit Luçon as an excursion from one of the seaside resorts on the Vendée coast, about 25 kilometres south-west of the town, such as La Tranche-sur-Mer and La Faute-sur-Mer.

You can find more travel ideas in the Vendee guide and the Pays de la Loire guide.

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Photos of Luçon cathedral

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  • artworks (1)
  • artworks (2)
  • cloisters
  • facade
  • font
  • nave (1)
  • nave (2)
  • nave (3)
  • vitraux

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La Tranche-sur-Mer

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La Tranche-sur-Mer guide


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... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Vendee

The French version of this page is at Luçon cathedral (Francais)