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You are here : Home » Discover » Abbeys » The Ladies Abbey, Caen

Founded around the year 1060 by Matilda of Flanders, wife of William the Conqueror

The Abbaye-aux-Dames was home to a community of Benedictine nuns until the French Revolution.
After this painful period, the conventual buildings, which were entirely rebuilt in the 18th century by Guillaume de la Tremblaye, became, in succession, a military garrison, a poorhouse, a hospital in 1823 and a hospice in 1908.
The buildings were restored in 1984 in order to house the Regional Council of Lower Normandy.
The cloisters gallery presents a beautiful example of fan-shaped vaults. The guided tour allows visitors to discover the interior architecture, the neo-Classical décor and a number of rooms.
The abbey church, dedicated to the Holy Trinity on 18 June 1066, remains a masterpiece of Norman Romanesque architecture, despite some 19th-century renovations.
Queen Matilda rests in the choir under a slab of black Tournai marble. The capitals of the apse offer a variety of more or less fantastical animals drawn from the bestiary.
The underground crypt of Saint Nicholas, which can be seen only on guided tours, is remarkable for its forest of columns and the capital showing the Last Judgement

Practical InformationAddress : Abbaye-aux-Dames Région Basse-Normandie Place Reine Mathilde BP 523 14 035 Caen cedex
: 02 31 06 98 98 Réservations de visites guidées : 02 31 06 98 45
: 02 31 06 98 75
: Contact
Website : View Website

Free visits: free

Guided tours: full price € 4, reduced price € 2, free for children under 18 years old ...


The abbey (seat of the Regional Council of Normandy):

8:30 a.m -12:30 p.m / 1:30 p.m- 6:00 p.m from monday to friday

2:00p.m-6:00 p.m the weekend

Park :

8:00 a.m to 6:00 p.m  from the 1st / 11th to the 31st of March

8:00 a.m to 8:00 p.m from 1st / 04 to 31/10

Site closed on the 01/01, the 1st 05 and the 25/12

Guided tours of the Ladies' Abbey (convent, abbey and crypt) every day at 2.30 pm and 4.00 pm (Except the 1st / 01, 1st / 05 and 25/12).

Departure from the visitor lobby, located in the abbey's courtyard.

Norman Abbeys
Norman Abbeys

Abbayes de Normandie - Route historique
28, rue Raymond Aron
BP 52
76824 Mont-Saint-Aignan Cedex

+33 (0)2 35 12 41 60
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