25 March 2024

Abbaye St Jean de Sorde

Campsite Landes > What to see What to do > Abbaye St Jean de Sorde
Frontal View At Medieval Abbey Of Saint Jean De Sorde, The Impor
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One of these large constructions can be seen in the village of Les Sordes. This is the Abbey of St. John, an imposing ancient monastery. The latter is classified as a historic monument and is also listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site under the name Chemins de Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle en France.

St Jean Abbey Church

St Jean de Sorte abbey is located on the banks of the Gave d’Oleron. It is one of the oldest buildings in the Landes region, dating back to the 10th century. It is accompanied by a fascinating story. At the time, it was used as a residence for monks, who were forced to leave during the Great Revolution. This led to its deterioration. It has survived wars such as those against Charles V and the Wars of Religion. It even suffered a fire, but was then restored in the 21st century and at other times, so that today’s people can once again discover it. Guided tours of the site are available from April to October. It takes 45 minutes to explore the site up close, discovering its architectural structures, exhibitions and more.

Frontal View At Medieval Abbey Of Saint Jean De Sorde, The Impor

His architectural compositions

What’s most fascinating about the abbey church of St Jean de Sorde is its Gothic architecture, which represents a whole art form. At the north entrance, a model of the monastery has been installed. Credit for the latter goes to Robert Martin. Its stained glass windows are also remarkable. The first floor is tiled with Bidache stone, giving it all its charm. They have been cut to a perfectly square shape to adorn the floor. As for the first floor, it’s brightly lit and offers a lovely panoramic view over the courtyard. The square is also home to a barn that served as a workplace for copyist monks, but was later transformed into a warehouse for harvesting materials. On the altar side, an 11th-century mosaic covers the choir floor. This pedestal is a true masterpiece by the Mazetti brothers, dating from 1784. Made of polychrome marble, it resembles a tomb.

Outside the church is a large, impressive terrace and a prestigious underground gallery. It’s 70 meters long and leads to a floor below, where kilos of salmon used to arrive. Don’t wait any longer to discover the Landes heritage during your vacation in the Landes.