Overlooking the Meuse River is the large Gothic form of Dinant Cathedral. This old Catholic church has been a dominant part of Dinant’s skyline since the 13th century. Study its beautiful architecture then tour the interior to admire the stained-glass windows.
The cathedral is also known as the Notre Dame de (Our Lady of) Dinant, and replaced the previous Romanesque church, which collapsed in 1228. It has been rebuilt and repaired on numerous occasions, including the years following the 20th century’s two world wars.
Start your exploration of the cathedral by looking over the exterior from the plaza that it sits on. Note the typical Gothic features such as arched windows and spires. The big highlight is the bulbous spire which is a 16th-century addition.
Once inside the Baroque interior, gaze up at the vaulted ceiling and the tall columns that support it. Browse the painting by 19th-century romantic painter Antoine Wiertz, who was born in Dinant. It is called We'll Meet Again in Heaven and is dedicated to his parents. Appreciate the colors and design of the stained-glass windows. Some feature geometric patterns, while others depict religious figures, such as the prophet Isaiah.
Stand before the main altar to study the beautiful gilded altarpiece. Above your head is a large cross with the crucified Jesus. Other features to look for inside the church include the 15th-century baptismal font and the 18th-century lectern made from dinanderie, a type of metalwork produced in Dinant from the late Middle Ages.
Dinant Cathedral is located in the center of the city at the foot of the citadel. Arrive by train at the Gare de Dinant and cross the bridge over La Meuse River to reach the church. The cathedral is open daily from morning until early evening and admission is free.