Ideal duration: 1-2 days
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Lourdes is a charming town in the foothills of the Pyrenees Mountains in Southern France. It is a very popular pilgrimage destination for Christians around the world and a popular tourist destination for its breathtaking natural beauty.
The main reason to visit Lourdes is to experience the spiritual and religious significance of the place. It is home to the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes where the Virgin Mary is said to have appeared to Saint Bernadette in 1858. The Sanctuary is one of the most sacred places of pilgrimage for Catholics and attracts millions of visitors every year. Location wise, Lourdes is about 200 kilometers south of Paris and is easily accessible by train. Visitors can explore the town's cobblestone streets, shops, cafes, and restaurants. Highlights include the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes and the Grotto of Massabielle, where the Virgin Mary is said to have appeared. There is also the beautiful Rosary Basilica, the Castle Fort, Cachot, and the Lourdes Museum. Activities in Lourdes include attending the daily Masses, visiting the churches and chapels, and taking part in the various ceremonies. Tourists can also enjoy the picturesque views of the Pyrenees Mountains, go for a hike, or take a boat trip on the Gave River. In addition to the religious and spiritual aspect of the town, visitors should also keep in mind the local customs and dress code. Visitors should dress modestly and cover their shoulders and knees when visiting churches. Lourdes is a very special place and visitors should respect its sanctity.