At the Grotto of Massabielle, the Virgin is said to have appeared to Bernadette 18 times in 1858. The site is accessible to pilgrims both day and night, and Mass is celebrated every day. The Statue of Our Lady depicts the Virgin in the posture she is said to have taken in the place she reputedly appeared, saying to Bernadette in Pyrénéan dialect, "I am the Immaculate Conception."
At the back of the Grotto, on the left of the altar, is the Miraculous Spring (La Source) that reportedly spouted on February 25, 1858, during the ninth apparition, when Bernadette scraped the earth. The Virgin is said to have commanded her, "Go and drink at the spring and wash there." The water from this spring is collected in several reservoirs, from which you can drink.
The Upper Basilica (La Basilique Supérieure), place du Rosaire, was built in the ogival style typical of the 13th century, but wasn't consecrated until 1876. It contains one nave split into five equal bays. Votive tablets line its interior. On the west side of the square is the Rosary Basilica, with two small towers. It was built in 1889 in the Roman-Byzantine style and holds up to 4,000 people. Inside, 15 chapels are dedicated to the mysteries of the rosary.
The oval Basilica of Pius X, 1 av. Monseigneur Théas, was consecrated in 1958. An enormous underground chamber covered by a concrete roof, it's 198m (650 ft.) long and 81m (266 ft.) wide, and holds as many as 20,000 people. It's one of the world's largest churches. It's open daily 7am to 7pm. International Masses are conducted in six languages, including English, every Wednesday and Sunday at 9:30am from April to October.
Nearby, the Musée Ste-Bernadette (tel. 05-62-42-78-78) contains scenes from the life of the saint; it's open daily 10am to noon and 2:30 to 5pm (call ahead during winter). Admission is free. Devotees will also seek out the Maison Paternelle de Sainte Bernadette, 2 rue Bernadette-Soubirous (tel. 05-62-94-22-51), where the saint was born on January 7, 1844, the daughter of a miller. Her childhood home (actually the home of her mother) is open April to October daily 9am to noon and 2 to 7pm, November to March daily 3 to 7pm. Entrance is free. Just a few buildings away is the former home of Bernadette's father, Le Moulin Lacadé, 2 rue Bernadette-Soubirous (tel. 05-62-94-22-51). Charging 1€ but free for ages 9 and under, it's open from mid-March to late October daily 9am to 12:15pm and 2:15 to 7pm. It's closed the rest of the year.
The privately owned and overly commercial wax museum, Musée Grévin, 87 rue de la Grotte (tel. 05-62-94-33-74), displays depictions of Bernadette's life and the life of Christ, along with a bad reproduction of Leonardo da Vinci's Last Supper. From mid-March to October, it's open daily 9am to noon and 1:45 to 6:30pm. During July and August, it's open 9am to 6:30pm. It's closed November to mid-March. Admission is 6.30€ adults and 3.30€ students and children 9 and under.
If you want a panoramic view, take an elevator to the terrace of the Château-Fort de Lourdes, an example of medieval military architecture. The castle contains the Musée Pyrénéen, 25 rue du Fort (tel. 05-62-42-37-37), with regional handicrafts and costumes, including a collection of dolls in nuns' habits. In the courtyard are scale models of different styles of regional architecture. Admission is 5€ adults, 3€ students and children 6 to 18, and free for children 5 and under. From April to mid-July and mid-August to September, the château and museum are open daily 9am to noon and 1:30 to 6:30pm, mid-July to mid-August daily 9am to 6:30pm, and from October to March daily 9am to noon and 2 to 6pm.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.