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Have you ever walked the labyrinth in Chartres?


Chartres is 80 km (50 miles) southwest of Paris which makes it ideal for a one-day visit.  It’s a picturesque city along the Eure river where the main tourist attraction is the cathedral, and that is the first thing you see on the hill when you come in on the train.


View from the train as you arrive in Chartres!


I like visiting churches, especially those of High Gothic and Romanesque styles like this one, which was constructed between 1194 and 1220. But that is not why I went.  I wanted to walk the labyrinth inside the cathedral.


Chartres Cathedral is a World Heritage Site


My friend Peg (who accompanied me on this trip to Chartres) introduced me to labyrinth walking a few years, as there are a couple of them in parks in and around the town where we live.  For those of you not familiar with this ancient practice, walking a labyrinth is a contemplative exercise where you enter at the bottom of the circles and snake your way slowly while quieting the mind and focussing your intent.


The labyrinth in Chartres


At the Cathedral of Our Lady of Chartres, the labyrinth is inside and only open to the public on Fridays.

When we arrived there were quite a few people already on their paths.  There were two red candles at the entrance to the labyrinth, one of which I kicked by mistake as I attempted to get into prayer mode.  They removed them soon after.


That is the toe of my left foot on the left as I  arrive behind another who has stopped to reflect


You can follow the circles around at your own deliberate pace but some people are slower than others. One lady was very deep into reflection, eyes closed and only occasionally focussed on the ground, as she put one foot in front of the other, then stopped for a moment after each step. Moving at such a snail’s pace a lineup started to form behind her.  No one was clear about the protocol, but like cars on the highway, we eventually all waited for the right moment to carefully pass her and carry on.

By the way, it took me about a half-hour to complete the labyrinth, arriving at the middle and them working my way out again towards the start.  I am guessing that woman pilgrim was still be shuffling around the circles for a good two hours or more.


The sanctuary in the Chartres Cathedral


I cannot remember what I thought about during my trek, but there really was something quite spiritual about becoming present to nothing more than the next step.  It was a moving experience doing this in a cathedral where people have walked on these stones for more than 700 years.


The Eure river runs through the city of Chartres


I highly recommend a visit to this lovely city where afterward you can also walk the cobbled streets, stop for lunch in one of the many bistros and restaurants, take in the leisurely lifestyle of its residents, and be on the train back to Paris in time for dinner.



Book Club Contest for NEW Subscribers!

Do you know someone who would like to be a Subscriber to my blog

I am holding a CONTEST, offering the book of their choice from my Paris BOOK Club Page to the 10th person to subscribe to my blog in the next week.

Please pass this information along to anyone who might be interested!  And if your referral is the 10th person, there will be a gift in this for you too!

Summer Hiatus

I will be taking the month of August off as I usually do to regroup and prepare for an exciting new season for Woman of A Certain Age In Paris!

While I still cannot travel to Paris, I will be moving forward with my Retail SHOP Page offering products that I personally endorse, and with my new Virtual Adventures Club, all of which I will be telling you about in early September.

I wish you a safe and happy month and I will back soon, although not too soon, as it is summer where I live and I do not want it to go by too fast.

Summer is always too short anyway n’est-ce-pas?

Keep up your reading and let me know how you are enjoying the books on the Paris BOOK CLUB list!

Warmest regards for now,



Catch Up on Posts You May Have Missed or would Like to Read Again!

You can catch up on past blogs by going to my website at

Here are Two you might want to look at:

Paris Undressed, which starts “Ladies Let’s talk underwear!”


The Frenchman — absolutely one of my favourites that I have written.

And don’ t forget to leave your COMMENTS below!


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  1. Christine Kowal on July 26, 2020 at 8:29 am

    Ahhhh, this left me feeling kind of wonderful and relaxed. Ready to take on the next part of the day. Looking forward to the Adventurers Club.

    Love and Light
    Christine And The Animals

    • Diana Bishop on July 26, 2020 at 9:33 am

      Thank you Christine. Even when i read this post, I feel more relaxed. It is so important to make these moments
      for ourselves. Do you know of a labyrinth in the area where you live? Lots of love to you, Diana

  2. Gretchen Greene O'Brien on July 26, 2020 at 8:35 am

    It is definitely a spiritual experience to walk through a Labyrinth! There are several around my home town of Milton – mostly outdoors. One has to be purposeful and focused as you step along …. clearing the mind! There are usually few people – so I cannot imagine the crowds you encountered at Chartres…distracting to say the least.

    • Diana Bishop on July 26, 2020 at 9:32 am

      So glad to hear from you Gretchen! I expect there are labyrinths tucked away all over. I must
      find one in Paris.

      Does anyone know of a labyrinth in Paris? Let us know. Diana

  3. Peg McPhedran on July 26, 2020 at 8:43 am

    That was a great day, Diana, and a moving experience to be able to walk such an historic labyrinth. For me, I felt a sense of peace and spiritual connection – it’s definitely a special place!

    • Diana Bishop on July 26, 2020 at 9:30 am

      It really is! And it was so fun to go with you! After all of the labyrinth walks we have done together.

      Look forward to our next adventure! Thanks Peg. Diana

  4. Shardie Stevenson on July 26, 2020 at 10:53 am

    Diana…. it looks like a lovely place to visit ❤️Perhaps on our cancelled and hopefully rescheduled. trip to Paris /Cannes please 🙏🏻 I don’t think I’ll do the labyrinth. I prefer the outdoor kind 😘

    • Diana Bishop on July 26, 2020 at 2:39 pm

      Yes, let’s hope so. There are a lot of wonderful day trips to take from Paris that we can explore. Thanks for the comment Shardie.

  5. Anne Teichroew on July 26, 2020 at 10:53 am

    I have just been reading The Frenchmen article, Diana. Several years ago i was sitting on a bench on the Promenade Des Anglais waiting for my husband. I was in my happy place when I became aware of someone coming over and sitting beside me. I turned to look and made eye contact with a handsome man who said “vous etes tres jolie.” He then smiled, nodded, got up and walked away! It was the best warm fuzzy/ego boost ever and I often take myself back to that moment! Bon staycation, Diana. Amicalement 💜

    • Diana Bishop on July 26, 2020 at 2:38 pm

      Anne, How delicious! An unexpected comment appreciating a women’s beauty with no strings attached. I love Paris. Thank you for reading that blog! Best to you, Diana

  6. Catherine Willis-O'Connor on July 26, 2020 at 2:23 pm

    Sounds like another fantastic place to put on the map the next time I am in France.
    Enjoy your August.
    Xxoo twink

    • Diana Bishop on July 26, 2020 at 2:36 pm

      Thank you Twink. Yes we are in the dog days of summer and time to enjoy every minute. Hope we can set up a call with the family in August. Best to you! Diana

  7. Trudy Van Buskirk on July 26, 2020 at 2:29 pm

    Reading your post about the Chartres labyrinth made me feel peaceful. Do you know any videos where you walk a labyrinth? It’s such peaceful meditation.

    When you listed books, I chose Waking Up In Paris by Sonia Choquette and I submitted as a possible choice for the virtual book club I belong to, to read for September. (We choose from 3 books the “leader” gives us.) It won! So I’ll be getting it on my ipad to read — yay! Thanks Diana 🙂

    • Diana Bishop on July 26, 2020 at 2:43 pm

      Hi Trudy…that is wonderful about the book. I hope to get an interview with Sonia for my Virtual Adventures Club next year. And if people are buying the book, either for Kindle or hard copy, I hope you will encourage your book club to do so through my BOOK CLUB page on my website at It would really help support my blog. Thanks, Trudy.

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