The Cathedral of Trier
The Cathedral of Trier ©Christof Herdt
Spiritual travel from A to Z

The High Cathedral of Saint Peter in Trier – Germany's oldest episcopal church

The oldest church in Germany, a seat of a bishop continuously since the third century and thus the oldest episcopal church in Germany: the High Cathedral of Saint Peter in Trier is unrivalled in every respect. Together with the Church of Our Lady and the Aula Palatina, it forms a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is a top destination for pilgrims the world over.

Pilgrims flock to Trier, not just because they want to walk in the footsteps of St. Martin – despite the fact that there is evidence he resided in Trier several times between 371 and 386. The Seamless Robe of Jesus (or the "Holy Robe"), which Constantine the Great's mother brought with her on her pilgrimage to Trier in the fourth century, is an attraction shrouded in mystery. It is a jewel in the cathedral treasury that the public only rarely get to see. The last time was in 2012.

Germany's oldest episcopal church is a combination of a whopping 1,700 years of building, art and religious history. This can be seen in the architecture as well as inside the cathedral, where the cathedral pulpit, the scallop shell-shaped baptismal font in the western chancel and the imposing design of the eastern chancel with the pilgrims' staircase and the view of the Baroque chapel for the relic of the Seamless Robe of Jesus captivate visitors. A number of bishops' gravestones also bear witness to the church's long history.

The Holy Door, which connects the cathedral and the Church of Our Lady, is another of the cathedral's main attractions. It was opened in 2015 for the Holy Year of Mercy, one of the major moments when the past can be at one with the present.

The Cathedral of Trier

Opening hours: 1 November to 31 March: 6:30am to 5:30pm; 1 April to 31 October: 6:30am to 6pm

Entry: free

Nearest train station: Saarbrücken

Tours for all ages (for a fee); accessible; treasury, museum and cathedral

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