The St Bavo Kerk (or Grote Kerk) is the main monumental church building of Haarlem, prominently located on the central square 'Grote Markt'.
The church as it is now was built in the 16th century, but the oldest parts go back to the 14th century. The church is named after Saint Bavo (died in 653), the patron saint of Haarlem.
The floor of the church consists entirely of old graves - 1,500 there are.
Inside you will find the monumental Christian Müller organ, one of the biggest in the world - it's really impressive. Mozart and Händel came here to play the organ.
There are regular organ concerts, that are accessible for free. If you click on 'concerten' on the website, you'll see a list of upcoming organ concerts.
Nice to know: every day, from 9pm to 9.30pm, two small church bells (the 'Damiaatjes') are sounded. This tradition goes back to the 16th century - this way the city inhabitants were warned that the city gates were about to close for the night.
The church can be visited for a small fee. The entrance is at the Grote Markt side, through the church souvenir shop.
Please note: this is a church, not a museum. Mainly on Sundays, services are held, at which time you are required to be quiet. Everyone may attend the church services.
Grote Markt in Haarlem
Christian Müller organ in Sint Bavo Church in Haarlem
Sint Bavo Church in Haarlem
Interior Sint Bavo church in Haarlem
Tombstone Sint Bavo church in Haarlem