The Gothic Church of Our Lady from the 13th century is located right next to the Gruuthuse Museum in the old town of Bruges. Its outstanding attraction is the sculpture “Madonna and Child” by Michelangelo from 1503. Its 122 m high brick tower is also one of the landmarks of Bruges and, together with the Belfry and the steeple of St. Salvator ‘s Cathedral, shapes the silhouette of the city.
Architecture and history
The Gothic church was built from the early 13th century and is one of the earliest brick buildings in Flanders. The three-nave nave was built between 1210 and 1230, and the stepped towers on the west façade were completed around 1280. By 1335 the transept, the choir and the tower were built. Since 1474 the church has had five naves. The organ dates from 1721/1722; a new organ was installed in the historic case in 1954 from existing pipe material.
Michelangelo’s “Madonna and Child
The church is home to numerous world-class art treasures The very fact that it is furnished with valuable sculptures and paintings makes the hearts of art lovers beat faster. Artfully decorated tomb slabs and tombs of nobles such as Mary of Burgundy and Charles the Bold, who found their final resting places in the Liebfrauenkirche since the 13th century, vividly tell of the customs and beliefs of past centuries.
The most important visitor attraction, however, is the marble statue “Madonna and Child” by Michelangelo, which is located on an altar in the chapel of the right aisle. It is one of the most famous works by the Italian master and was brought to Flanders from Siena by wealthy merchants during the heyday of the trading city of Bruges in the early 16th century.
Part of the church can be entered free of charge, only the area separated off as a museum (where the Madonna and Child is also located) is subject to a charge. Currently, the church is still being restored, so not all areas are accessible. Therefore, a reduced tariff applies.
Tickets and prices
- Adults: 6 Euro (currently reduced 4 Euro)
- Seniors and children/young people up to 25 years: 5 Euro (currently reduced 3 Euro)