Frequently Asked Questions
The Chartres en lumières illuminations are lit 7 evening a week from dusk to 1am (11.30pm from 29 October), from 15 April 2023 to 6 January 2024.
The times vary according to the time of nightfall.
From 4pm on Saturday 16 September, traffic and parking will be modified throughout the heart of Chartres.
Find out all the traffic and parking rules during the Fête de la lumière.
The tour of the sites, along the boulevards, around the cathedral and along the Eure, extends over 5 to 7 km. The scenographies of the royal portal of Chartres cathedral last 30 minutes (about 15 minutes by scenography). The other animated illuminations last between 3 and 5 minutes.
The town of Chartre is easy to reach both by train and by car.
Coming by car
- 1 h from Paris: Follow A6 direction Bordeaux-Nantes then A10 and A11 direction Nantes.
- 1 h from Orléans: Follow the A10 towards Paris/Chartres, then the N154 towards Rouen/Chartres.
- 2 h from Rouen: Follow the A13 towards Évreux then the N154 towards Chartres/Orléans.
- 1 h 30 from Le Mans: Follow A11 direction Paris/Chartres.
Chartres has almost 2,000 surface parking spaces and another 3,000 in underground or elevated car parks.
Chartres train station is located 5 minutes walk from Chartres city centre. You can quickly reach all the illuminations as well as the hotels and restaurants.
There are about 33 daily connections from Paris-Montparnasse station (about 1 hour) to Chartres station. About 12 daily connections are made between Le Mans and Chartres and there are regular connections between Brittany and Chartres.
Chartres en lumières is an entirely free event organised by the City of Chartres.
C'Chartres Tourisme offers paying guided tours of Chartres en lumières, as do several other associations.
The Fête de la lumières is an entirely free event organised by the City of Chartres.
Nature, culture, concerts, entertainment... You won't have time to get bored while waiting for nightfall...
Today, Chartres offers many architectural and cultural sites that you can visit... Discover the must-see places in Chartres
Throughout the year, the city puts together a rich and varied programme of events. Discover the major events in Chartres
Nature lovers, come and relax in the many parks and gardens of Chartres, these "green lungs" which are available for you to relax and practice leisure activities and sports.
Chartres en lumières is an annual event that uses light to enhance the value of our heritage.
It takes place every year from April to January. Twenty or so sites are illuminated 7 evening a week, from dusk until 1am (11.30pm from 29 October). Each year brings its share of surprises with new illuminations and new illuminated heritage sites.
The Fête de la lumière takes place every two years (odd-numbered years), on the weekend of the European Heritage Days. During this exceptional festive evening, visitors are offered a unique programme of events that showcase light in many forms: street arts, installations, live shows, or the most modern interactive devices with the Chartres en lumières illuminations in the background.
The next Festival of Light will take place on 16 September 2023.
The Fête de la lumières will be back on Saturday 16 September 2023, on the weekend of the European Heritage Days. Visitors will be able to discover a unique programme of events on the infinite theme of light during an exceptional festive evening.
Don't hesitate to try our good restaurants in Chartres and its surroundings. For more information, C'Chartres tourisme has a large list of restaurants, bars, local producers...
The full programme for the Festival of Light will be unveiled on the morning of Saturday 16 September on the Fête de la lumière page. The programme will also be distributed at the following information points:
Édicule, place des Halles
Boulevard Chasles, en face du cinéma
Around twenty companies will be dazzling the town centre with light installations, strolls, shows performed in several locations, acrobats, musicians and technological feats such as the amazing bio-luminescent flowers created by Chartres start-up Aglaé.
And let's not forget the sneak preview of two additional sites being illuminated:
The church of Saint-Aignan will be decked out in the finest works of sacred art, from primitive mosaics to medieval goldsmiths' and silversmiths' work, from stained glass to painted decorations.
The façade of the Departmental Council, on Place Châtelet, will showcase all the natural beauty and heritage of the Eure-et-Loir.
The city of Chartres and its surroundings offer many accommodation possibilities. A campsite in a green setting, a bed and breakfast, a warm and welcoming cottage or furnished accommodation, a cosy city centre hotel, a tourist residence or even unusual accommodation that will give you a unique experience...
We invite you to contact C'Chartres tourism for more information.
Chartres en lumières is located in the heart of Chartres, along the boulevards, around the cathedral and along the river Eure.
You can locate the illuminated sites on our map and build your route.
You can also download the digital map of Chartres en lumières 2023.
This map is also available on request from C'Chartres Tourisme and in most of the shops and tourist accommodation in Chartres.
Chartres en lumières remains, unchallenged since its creation, the largest operation of its kind in the world, by the combination of the number of sites illuminated and its duration.
The City of Chartres has brought together a whole panel of French artists who are pioneers in the fields of cutting-edge technology, audiovisual production, architectural video mapping and large-format moving images.