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Skip-the-Line: Paris Catacombs Tour with VIP Access to Restricted Areas

star-4.5848 Reviews
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Paris, France
Skip-the-Line: Paris Catacombs Tour with VIP Access to Restricted Areas
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Safety measures
icon2 hours  (approx.)
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English

Operators have paid Viator more to have their experiences featured here

Overview

Discover the darker side of the City of Lights with this skip-the-line tour of the famed catacombs of Paris. Explore these fascinating underground passageways lined with the bones of thousands of former Parisians and learn the history of the mesmerizing and macabre labyrinth. Bypass the long lines for this popular attraction and enjoy personalized attention in a small group limited to 19 people.
  • Small group guided walking tour inside the Paris catacombs
  • Personalized small group tour (maximum 19 people)
  • Skip the line to enter the catacombs and avoid two-hour queues
  • Expert English-speaking guide
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Skip-the-line access and visit to the Parisian catacombs
Small groups to ensure an intimate experience
Local English-speaking expert guide
Special access to restricted areas closed to general public
Gratuities
Food and drinks, unless specified
Hotel pickup and drop-off
Catacombs of Paris , 1 Av. du Colonel Henri Rol-Tanguy, 75014 Paris, France

Meet at the entrance to the Catacombes de Paris. He/She will be holding a sign. To arrive at the Catacombs by Metro please take Line 4 or Line 6 to the Denfert-Rochereau metro stop and exit using “Sortie 1”; the entrance to the Catacombs can be found directly across the street from this exit.

This activity will end right where it started.
The Paris catacombs consist of an extensive underground network of tunnels originally dug as limestone quarries during the building of some of the city’s famous monuments. Beginning in the late 18th century, remains from Paris’ overcrowded cemeteries were exhumed and transported here for storage, with thousands of bones neatly arranged into piles along the walls.

Delve into this eerie underworld with an exclusive small-group tour. Lines to enter the catacombs often exceed 2 hours, but you’ll head to the front of the queue with your knowledgeable guide. A group maximum of 19 people provides a more personalized experience.

Wander through the dimly lit labyrinth that winds beneath the city’s famous streets. Marvel at the stacks of human skeletons that greet you at every turn while your guide illuminates the history of this soul-stirring ‘empire of death.’
Itinerary
Stop At:  
The Paris Catacombs
Why wait in a long line to see less of the Catacombs? Your guide, an English-speaking local expert, will lead your group straight past the lines and down into the 200-mile labyrinth of bone-lined galleries and former quarry tunnels. An inscription at the entrance reads “Arrête! C’est ici l’empire de la mort”, or “Stop! Here lies the empire of death”. In this eerie empire, you’ll encounter the remains of such dignitaries as Rabelais and Robespierre, among more than 6 million other former Parisians. While individual ticket holders must remain on the public routes, your guide will lead you off the well-traveled path. As well as other significant remains, like the hidden Gilbert’s Tomb, here you’ll find monuments to those who made their living in the empire of death. In the Port Mahon Gallery, you’ll see sculptures that an 18th-century quarry worker spent five years chiseling secretly from the tunnel walls, before being crushed in a cave-in. You’ll see the Quarryman’s Footbath and the Sepulchral Lamp, whose constant flame reassured the living that there was enough air in the tunnels. As you wind your way around the Catacombs, you’ll hear all about the history of this parallel city – and the many legends surrounding it. Once you’ve seen what lies just 65 feet below the city, your view of Paris will be forever changed.
Duration: 2 hours 
Admission Ticket Included
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Not wheelchair accessible.
  • We regret that we are unable to accommodate pushchairs or strollers on our tours.
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Near public transportation
  • Please note that Special Access areas may be closed on some days.
  • Not recommended for travelers with claustrophobia
  • Travelers should have a moderate physical fitness level
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 14 travelers
  • OPERATED BY City Wonders Ltd
You can cancel up to 3 days in advance of the experience for a full refund.
  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 3 full days before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 2 full days before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 2 full days before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.
  • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund.

Learn more about cancellations.

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What is the policy on face masks and attendee health during Skip-the-Line: Paris Catacombs Tour with VIP Access to Restricted Areas?
A:The policies on face masks and attendee health are:

  • Face masks required for travelers in public areas
  • Face masks required for guides in public areas
See all safety measures taken by Skip-the-Line: Paris Catacombs Tour with VIP Access to Restricted Areas.
Q:
What is the social distancing policy during Skip-the-Line: Paris Catacombs Tour with VIP Access to Restricted Areas?
A:The policy on social distancing is:

  • Social distancing enforced throughout experience
See all safety measures taken by Skip-the-Line: Paris Catacombs Tour with VIP Access to Restricted Areas.

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Traveler Tips


  • "Wear comfortable shoes as it’s 2 hrs long and the stairs back up can be challenging - just take it slow." See review
  • "It is chilly as you're underground, so consider your needs there, and wear good walking shoes." See review
  • "This tour gets you to skip the line which is important since they really control the number of people in the catacombs and without it you would probably have to wait a long time in line." See review

Reviews by Viator travelers.  We perform checks on reviews

Reviews

4.5
star-4.5
848 Reviews

Reviews by Viator travelers

We perform checks on reviews

Showing 1-10 of 848 reviews
star-5
Catacombs are overwhelming.
Robert_R
, Jul 2022
The guide was wonderful. Very knowledgeable and engaged. She took us to limited access places that were very meaningful to the experience. I learned so much, but was also overwhelmed. I had no idea that the bones of six million people were entombed down there, or the actual extent of the catacombs. It's something I would definitely recommend for nothing else but the perspective on the insignificance, and good fortune of our own lives.
1 traveler found this review helpful
star-1
One of the worse tours ever.
Kathleen_H
, Jul 2022
Just walking around it and reading all of the history. I believe people should just use the audio devise instead of a tour.
2 travelers found this review helpful
star-1
Save your money
Renee_M
, Jul 2022
First, our guide was an hour late. The group was out waiting and wondering if we'd get to see the catacombs, as they were sold out until Saturday. It was Wed and we were leaving Friday. Our guide was pleasant and his English was easily understandable. However, the wall within the catacombs is narrow. We were a group of 18. Being in the back we heard nothing of what the guide was saying. We couldn't even move forward to hear or let him know. At one point we were around a corner from the rest of the group, again not able to see what the guide was referencing or hear him. Add this to others walking through with their audio guides, just added to the difficulty of hearing our guide. Our guide did say in the begining he'd walk up and down while talking. He didn't. In other tours we were given earphones and the guide used a portable mic allowing us to hear everything. This would have been very helpful here. About half way, I did finally talk to our guide to tell him. I also suggested the headphones but he said they didn't use them. He repeated some of the info already given but it lost some context as we missed out on what he was showing us at the time. Lastly, our guide did not appear to know took much about this site. Overall the only reason it got 1 star was we got tickets to enter and we got to go into restricted areas. Otherwise, I'd say save your money, purchase the tickets online directly with the catacombs and use they audio guides.
1 traveler found this review helpful
star-5
Great
Jasper_P
, Jul 2022
Really nice hands on tour, with allot of information, history and room for questions. The extra rooms in the tour were definitely worth it
star-2
No guide
Charles_C
, Jul 2022
The guide did not come. Only through another guide from a different company were we informed, and this was after the meeting time. We did not get any of the special access promised.
star-2
Catacombs great. Viator terrible
Rebecca_W
, Jul 2022
I enjoyed the Catacombs, but wouldn't use Viator ever again. they charged way too much and the guide didnt show up. We were almost denied entry if it hand been for the kind people t the reception area. Terrible service, didn't even get an apology
star-2
Guide didn’t show up
anna_h
, Jul 2022
The tour guide didn’t show up, so sad. I was really looking forward to getting personal guided info about the catacombs as it is my first time in Paris and I leave in a day
star-5
Deathly delightful!
Kassia_W
, May 2022
What an absolutely fantastic tour!! Our guide was intelligent, humorous, and informative. She handled all our questions well and we enjoyed the VIP access to restricted areas. We even got into deep philosophical conversations about death, dying, and life! We highly recommend you do any Pere Lachaise tour in advance of this one as they tie in together well.
1 traveler found this review helpful
star-3
Very Disappointed.
Cynthia_Z
, May 2022
The catacombs themselves are very interesting and could have been so much better with another guide. She was extremely rushed. Our tour was to be 2 hours. With pre-bathroom, we spent about an hour in the catacombs. The guide spoke English but with an accent and spoke very quickly. In addition, I had an injured foot and asked her to slow down the walk. She told me she would just wait for me at the next talking point. Definitely not worth the money!!
star-5
Bone Chilling🦴!
Neil_S
, May 2022
Addy our guide made the experience well worth the trip in the walking in their long tunnels low ceilings, multiple steps but overall very very interesting. She made the Special section even more informative! Well worth the VIP tour!
star-5
Awesome!
P_J
, Apr 2022
Our guide had a lot of insider info as a cataphile and that was amazing! She was able to spark the interest beyond the obvious “morbid” or sensitive content of the tour.
star-1
Running late because taxi...
Michael_H
, Mar 2022
Running late because taxi got into an accident - tried calling - voice mail. Had to wait in long line and the staff acted like this was the first time anyone was running a couple minutes late for a paid for tour.
star-5
Great tour
Kathleen_F
, Mar 2022
we loved seeing the artistry of the bones and hearing the history of how they came to be there. Michelle’s storytelling was captivating. Highly recommend this tour.
star-5
Excellent!!!
Tammy_P
, Mar 2022
This was a great tour!!! Our guide was very knowledgeable and we were able to go into areas not allowed by the general self guided tours. We were given detailed information about the origins of the catacombs and the peoples involved., the whole why, who and what!! We would very much recommend this tour and especially this guide to fellow travelers! Thank you for a fabulous and informational tour!!!
star-5
Ady, is perfect guide,...
Clment_P
, Feb 2022
Ady, is perfect guide, Dynamic, funny, enthousiast and she vert know her subject. We had very love this expérience.
1 traveler found this review helpful
star-5
SUPERB!
Lucas_M
, Jan 2022
So amazing! Vic was an incredible guide with her vast knowledge of history, folktales, and current events of the catacombs. She spoke brilliant English and had an answer for every question she received. 10/10 recommend!!
star-5
A must see
Norm_L
, Dec 2021
Their is a line to get in if you go individually. The benefit of a guide is you hear more and have access to a gated area of catacombs that others do not. The guide we had was Ferret and he was a good story teller and knowledge of Paris history.
star-5
Addie was amazing!...
Sarah_S
, Dec 2021
Addie was amazing! Definitely learned a lot of information. Had a great time and overall great tour.
1 traveler found this review helpful
star-5
This is the way to see the catacombs of Paris!
bjbdhk4h97
, Dec 2021
Our guide Michelle was fantastic, we learned all about the catacombs and were entertained throughout. The private areas, together with the guide, made this tour worth every penny.
1 traveler found this review helpful
star-5
Tour guide (I think her...
Charlie_C
, Dec 2021
Tour guide (I think her name was Barbara but not 100% sure) was amazing, so excited and enthusiastic to show us around and made it super interesting. Learned a lot about the history of the catacombs from her… Thankyou!!

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