Rome is the eternal city, an eternally catholic city in the world. The city is place where the Pope resides, though technically the head of the church stays in Vatican City, which is a small, separate country bounded by Rome. The visitors need not to be Catholic to explore the marvelous art and architecture these centuries-old churches hold. Taking part in mass at any of these churches can offer both a religious experience for Catholics and cultural experience for non-Catholics. Moreover, it will also offer great prospective for tourists / visitors of Rome. In the following write-up, we have listed some of must visit and beautiful churches in the scenic city. Explore Rome with EaseMyTrip
St. Peter’s Basilica
Though, St. Peter’s Basilica is not the oldest Catholic Church in Rome but is renowned worldwide for its magnificent architecture. The basilica is constructed on the site where the first pope, St. Peter is believed to be crucified. The present basilica took over 150 years to erect, however the wait was worth it. Excellent works by famous Renaissance artists such as Michelangelo, who also designed the dome and all over its ornate interior. The basilica and its related chapels as well as museums are just incredible to look at.
Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore
The Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore (also referred to as St. Mary Major) is known to be one of the most significant Catholic churches in Rome. We can say that it is a crown jewel amongst the beautiful churches in the country. This church consists of notable varieties of art and artifacts that represent Christian art civilization of Rome. Devotees from all across the globe come here to pay homage to this basilica, where every, column, stained glass window or fresco has a religious history.
San Giovanni in Laterano
Also known as St. John Lateran, San Giovanni in Laterano is one of the four major basilicas in Rome. Dedicated to John (the Baptist) and John (the Evangelist), this is the home cathedral for both the archbishop of Rome and the pope. It is renowned as “the cathedral of Rome and of the world.” San Giovanni in Laterano is believed to be the first ever Catholic Church constructed in Rome. Though, its exterior doesn’t look very good but as you step inside, the interiors will keep you awestruck with wall decorations, mosaics, columns and paintings. Even, you will find the candlesticks bear images of the ancient prophets.
Basilica of Santa Maria del Popolo
Amongst all of the churches in the country, the Basilica of Santa Maria del Popolo is known to have the best examples of works by Renaissance artists, including Bernini, Caravaggio and Raphael. The church was built in the year 1099 to combat residents’ beliefs that the ghost of Nero was haunting the area near the north gate to Rome as evil-looking crows lived in a tree; the tree was cut down and the church was constructed. This church has various chapels all of which contain work by leading artists of those days.
Some of the other churches in Rome are Basilica of San Clemente, Pantheon, Santa Maria Sopra Minerva and Santa Maria in Trastevere.