Église du Bon-Pasteur – Lyon, France - Atlas Obscura
THE GASTRO OBSCURA BOOK An eye-opening journey through the history, culture, and places of the culinary world. Just released! The Gastro Obscura book is here! Order Now

Église du Bon-Pasteur

This abandoned church in central Lyons is missing its front stairs. 


If you look at this church, you’ll notice something odd. There’s no way to actually enter the front door, as the entrance is about 13 feet (four meters) above the ground.

Originally, a staircase was meant to be built. But building this staircase would have required destroying a nearby building, so the plan was scrapped. Rather than walk through the front door, people had to slip in via a side entrance.

The church was built at the end of the 19th century. The French Emperor at the time, Napoleon III, even laid the first stone.

The structure stopped functioning as a Catholic church in 1984. It then become a showroom for students at the École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts de Lyon, though the students left it in 2008. After that, the building became abandoned, though it did host squatters for a while.

Know Before You Go

Entering the building is illegal. Stick to admiring it from the outside. 

Want to see fewer ads? Become a Member.
From Around the Web