How old is the Notre Dame Cathedral?

As Paris reels from almost losing the historic Notre Dame Cathedral to a massive fire, it's a good time to appreciate just how old the building is.

Its construction was completed 674 years ago in 1345, which means sightseers had been visiting it for hundreds of years before many of the world's most well-known tourist attractions were even built.

To put it in perspective, here's a comparison between the age of the Notre Dame and other notable attractions around the globe.


1345: Notre Dame Cathedral is completed

How old is the Notre Dame Cathedral?
Photo credit: Dan Lake/Newshub.

Construction of the French Gothic style building began in 1163. 

1500: Approximate time of the last eruption at Rangitoto Island

View on Rangitoto volcano from the North Head mountain, Devonport, Auckland, New Zealand
Photo credit: Getty Images

Scientists estimate this was when the volcano last erupted. The Notre Dame was 155 years old.

1503: Leonardo da Vinci paints the Mona Lisa

How old is the Notre Dame Cathedral?

The painting is now housed at the Lourve Museum just 1.5 km from the Notre Dame in Paris. The Notre Dame was 158 years old.

1626: St Peter's Basilica opens at Vatican City

Panoramic blue summer skies over Michelangelo's golden facade of St. Peter's Basilica, the Vatican apartments and museums, Bernini's monumental colonnade and the obelisk in Piazza San Pietro, Vatican CIty, Rome, Italy. ProPhoto RGB profile for maximum color fidelity and gamut.
Photo credit: Getty Images

The building is known as Basilica Papale di San Pietro in Vaticano in Italian.  The Notre Dame was 281 years old.

1643: Taj Mahal is completed in India

How old is the Notre Dame Cathedral?
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The Taj Mahal is visited by around 8 million people every year.  The Notre Dame was 298 years old.

1675: Construction begins on current St Paul's Cathedral

London - Cathedral St. Paiul, UK
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However, the old St Paul's Cathedral dates back as far as 1300. The Notre Dame was 330 years old.



1703: Buckingham Palace was completed

How old is the Notre Dame Cathedral?
Photo credit: Creative Commons.

The East Wing of the palace - the main face we see in photos today - wasn't part of the original building. That was added in 1913. The Notre Dame was 358 years old .



1707: United Kingdom of Great Britain formed

Color image of an old color map of Europe, from the 1800's.
Photo credit: Getty Images

England, Wales and Scotland joined by way of a parliamentary Act of Union. The Notre Dame was 362 years old years old.


1840: Trafalgar Square is opened in London

Busy Trafalgar Square London UK on sunny Autumn afternoon, with a nutrally occuring crowd of dozens of people, walking, sightseeing or relaxing around the monument.
Photo credit: Getty Images

The square is one of the most visited and photographed locations in the UK.  The Notre Dame was 495 years old.