A roof, an altar, a few pews: the modest and welcoming Notre-Dame des Clés chapel is tucked away on a pathway between a majestic pine tree and a wooden bridge.
It is a mountain pasture chapel, a place of contemplation in the heart of the forest. The oratory, at an altitude of 1,290 metres, is only accessible on foot or with snow shoes. There's no need for a key as this lovely little chapel has no door!
The idea of building a sanctuary was formed during a discussion between three members of the Gruyère section of the Swiss Alpine Club. The chapel was inaugurated in 1956, with the materials sourced from the surrounding area: a wooden shingle roof, a stone altar, a mineral cross within the wall, and wooden seats.
On the outside, the bench built against the choir is the perfect place for a picnic in the sunshine, with beautiful views over the Alpine foothills.