Visit Venice’s most visited and popular sightseeing attraction with your St Mark’s Basilica Tickets, and enjoy touring one of the top cathedrals in Italy. Popularly known as Basilica di San Marco, the St Mark’s Basilica is a Medieval Church dating back to the 9th century. A blend of Byzantine, Romanesque, gothic, and Islamic influences, the church has a rich past with fascinating lore and legends. Decorated with beautiful gold mosaic patterns, marble inlay flooring, and breathtaking architecture, the St Mark’s Basilica is famous for its opulent design and interior.
Fondly called the ‘Church of Gold’, these mosaic patterns have been built over a period of 800 years. Stroll through the 5 majestic domes and admire the historic artworks inside as you walk through the 500 columns of the basilica. So grab your tickets and keep in mind the tips to visit St Mark’s Basilica when you visit this magnificent grandeur in Venice.
THINGs TO SEE INSIDE ST MARK’S BASILICA
The 3 meters wide and 2 meters tall Pala d’Oro altar inside the basilica is a breathtaking work of art decorated with precious stones and byzantine enamel on gold. It depicts the story of saints.
Museo Di San Marco:
The Museum of the Basilica displays numerous artifacts that provide an insight into the history of the basilica. The curated collection includes broken mosaic fragments, Persian carpets, liturgies, 78 bones of different saints, and many more relics.
Marble design inlays in geometric patterns cover the floor of the Basilica. The pattern covers over 2099 square meters in area. You will even see tiny hints of glass in these beautiful marble inlay patterns that adorn the floor.
Showcasing hand-carved stone, metal, and enamel works of art, the Treasury is a must-visit place with your St Mark’s Basilica Tickets. Filled with byzantine artifacts, vases, art pieces made of gold and silver, and glasses, it is a treasure trove of antiquities.
Tomb of St. mark:
After two merchants smuggled the remains of St Mark who was the patron saint of Venice, his relics were kept inside the basilica at this location.
HISTORY OF ST MARK’S BASILICA
The story behind the construction of St Mark’s Basilica is one of adventure and amusement. In 828, the relics of the body of St Mark which is kept protected inside the Basilica, were smuggled out of Alexandria by two merchants. They cleverly hid the body in wicker baskets, under pork meat. Even though they faced some difficulty at sea, they were able to pass through as the officials did not check the barrel because pork is highly detested by Arabs.
They temporarily stored the relics at the Doge’s palace in the beginning. Later, a grand basilica was built to shelter the relic; however, after it burnt down in 976, the current structure came into existence when Doge Domenico Cantarini decided to restore it in 1071. To date, the basilica stands in all its glory showcasing the beautiful work and Byzantine and Italian architects.
ARCHITECTURE OF ST MARK’S BASILICA
Built-in Byzantine and Romanesque style architecture, St Mark’s Basilica has three main facades- the north, the south, and the west. Consisting of three main sections, the exterior of the west facade is divided into the upper and lower sections and the dome. The lower part is adorned with five arched entrances decorated with painted marble columns while the upper section is ordained with beautiful mosaic patterns depicting the life of Christ. A gold-covered mosaic pattern known as ‘The Last Judgment’ is placed above the main entrance.
While the exterior of the basilica is eye-catching, the interior will simply leave you in awe. Built over a period of 800 years, it is decorated with gold-plated mosaic patterns, Christian art, and arches. The five domes of the basilica are a sight to behold. Covered in gold mosaics, each one is 13 meters in diameter and has 16 windows. The central dome showcases the ascension of Christ into heaven after his resurrection. You will also find multiple chapels inside the Basilica, which are dedicated to Madonna and other saints. So grab your St Mark’s Basilica Tickets and enjoy the breathtaking architecture of the basilica.
TIPS TO VISIT ST MARK’S BASILICA
- The dress code at the basilica entails wearing full and covered clothing meaning no shorts and bare shoulders. Men are advised to wear shirts and no clothing with crude writings
- You will have to deposit your backpack near the main entrance, so it is recommended to take out your emergency items and valuables before doing so.
- One of the best tips to visit St Mark’s Basilica is to see the best views of the gold mosaics from the gallery near the entrance of the museum
- It is recommended to hire a tour guide who will structure your visit aptly and explain the significance of the basilica at every step.
- Keep yourself hydrated and well-fed throughout the tour as it will take you about 3 hours to tour the full basilica.
- You can also grab a bite at the outdoor cafes in Piazza San Marco after you are done touring the basilica.
- One of the most important tips to visit St Mark’s Basilica is that it is prohibited to feed the pigeons near the basilica as they can cause harm to it.
- For easier accessibility, people with special needs can use the ramp in the Porta Dei Fiori, located on the left side of the basilica.