Verdun, city of memory
If you’re a history buff, interested in the great conflicts that have marked the world, or simply curious, come and explore Verdun, a site emblematic of the First World War, and more specifically, of the battle that took place there in 1916.
The Verdun Memorial, the Douaumont Ossuary, the Underground Citadel and the Trench of Bayonets are so many sites steeped in history, stirring emotions and getting you to relive times that have left an indelible mark on France’s history.
LAND OF HISTORY AND COMMEMORATION
The Verdun Memorial, place of remembrance
Set in the heart of the battlefield, the Verdun Memorial is a real step back in time. An abrupt return to 1914-18. Over 1,800 m² dedicated to the Battle of Verdun fought in 1916, combining collectors’ items, testimonies and original photographs from the French and German sides alike, along with a stunning immersive audiovisual show on the battle that marked a turning-point in the First World War.
The Verdun Memorial also organises a varied cultural programme suited to all types of public. A historic site not to be missed out on.
The Douaumont Ossuary, a place steeped in history
Built on the initiative of Monseigneur Ginisty, nicknamed “The Soldiers’ Bishop”, the Douaumont Ossuary is a commemorative monument dedicated to the 300,000 unknown soldiers killed in the Battle of Verdun. It took 12 years to build this place of commemoration, which houses the remains of soldiers from the First World War.
The Douaumont Ossuary comprises a 137-metre-long cloister whose stained-glass windows reflect orange-red colours giving the place an atmosphere all its own, a chapel where visitors can collect their thoughts, a Tower with unrestricted views of the battlefield, and a cemetery filled with soldiers’ graves. An amazing historical site worthy of the soldiers who died at the front.
The Trench of Bayonets
Not for from the Ossuary, the Trench of Bayonets, another of the site’s historical monuments, awaits you. Built by an American sponsor, the edifice is based on a legend: after battling the German troops for weeks on end, the French were buried in their own trench as the result of intense shelling.
This freely accessible commemorative site is one of Verdun’s symbolic places. Like the other monuments, the Trench of Bayonets illustrates the atrocities of war, paying marvellous tribute to the 305,000 soldiers who fell in the 1916 Battle.