From inside Notre-Dame-des-Anges in Collioure, France, you can head the wash of the waves that roll over three sides of the 17th century church.
Part of the icon of the seaside town predates this meditative place of worship. The bell tower of Notre-Dame-des-Anges was originally built as a lighthouse. The medieval light was taken out of service when the towns of Port d’Aval and Port d’Amont combined into Collioure and a new fort was built. It also now doubles as a clock tower.
Inside the church are stunning carved wood altarpieces in the Catalan Baroque style. The beach is right alongside, and it’s from these shores that artists like Matisse, Georges Braque, and André Derain were drawn to this fishing port to paint Notre-Dame-des-Anges with its strange architecture.