Basilica di San Marco, Venice

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Piazza San Marco - SAN MARCO

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  • wilocrek's Profile Photo

    Basilica di San Marco

    by wilocrek Updated Apr 30, 2008

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    A classic landmark of Venice, this church was consecrated in 1094 and is the third to have been built on this site. It's Byzantine architecture reflects strong trading links with the Orient and its lavish riches are the bounty of the formidable crusades. Its uknown as to whether or not all the pigeons were part of the bounty or just a result of thousands of tourists buying bird feed from vendors and passing out free meals...one things for sure there are way too many pigeons!

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    St Mark's Basilica

    by ealgisi Written Apr 30, 2008
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    The cathedral of Venice, also known as Chiesa d'Oro.

    Originally this was the chapel of the Venetian rulers and not considered as the cathedral.

    Constructed in 828, has been replaced by a new church in 832.
    This new church was burned in 976 during a rebellion and then rebuilt in 978, then consacrated in 1094.

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    Piazza San Marco and Basilica di San Marco

    by eksvist Written Apr 26, 2008

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    Piazza San Marco with pigeons
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    Piazza San Marco, often known in English as St Mark's Square, is the principal square of Venice, Italy.
    It is the only urban space called a piazza in Venice; the others, regardless of size, are called campi.
    As the central landmark and gathering place for Venice, Piazza San Marco is extremely popular with tourists, photographers, and Venetian pigeons.

    St Mark's Basilica - Basilica di San Marco a Venezia, the cathedral of Venice, is the most famous of the city's churches and one of the best known examples of Byzantine architecture. It lies on St Mark's Square adjacent and connected to the Doge's Palace. Originally it was the "chapel" of the Venetian rulers, and not the city's cathedral.

    The Horses of Saint Mark were installed on the basilica in about 1254. They date to Classical Antiquity; by some accounts they once adorned the Arch of Trajan. The horses were long displayed at the Hippodrome of Constantinople, and in 1204 Doge Enrico Dandolo sent them back to Venice as part of the loot sacked from Constantinople in the Fourth Crusade. They were brought to Paris by Napoleon in 1797 but returned to Venice in 1815. After a long restoration, since the 1990s they have been kept in St Mark’s Museum (inside the basilica). The horses now on the facade of the cathedral are bronze replicas.

    I think when you visiting the Venice, then Piazza San Marco and Basilica di San Marco are two places, what you must to see certainly. There are lot of people usually everywhere but I think they are sights what you want to remember in future

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  • leics's Profile Photo

    Visit San Marco, obviously.

    by leics Updated Apr 12, 2008

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    Basilica entrance: look while you are waiting!

    But do, do get there early. It's a fascinating place, but you will see little of it if you are there with the hordes of visitors and tour groups which soon arrive. The basilica has many roped-off areas, so you are all herded around the same pathways.

    I was there by 9.30 (it opens at 9.45) and ther was a queue already (in early April). But it wasn't too big, and by careful standing still Imanaged to get several minutes to myself looking at the entirely wonderful 'Pala d'Oro' (golden Medieval altar screen).

    It really is worth the effort to get up and take breakfast early, and to be in the Piazza (and the queue) before the basilica opens.

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  • wilocrek's Profile Photo

    The Four Horses of Saint Mark

    by wilocrek Written Apr 2, 2008

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    The Triumphal Quadriga or Horses of Saint Mark is a set of Roman or Greek bronze statues of four horses, originally part of a monument depicting a quadriga. The original horses were moved from the facade of the basilica in the 1980's and place inside the basilica for protection from the elements.

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  • hundwalder's Profile Photo

    Basilica di San Marco artistic detail.

    by hundwalder Updated Mar 26, 2008

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    San Marco Basilica entrance detail

    All five front entrances to the Basilica are adorned with brilliant mosaics, inclusions that look like sparkling jewels, and other intricately carved marble and granite features. This mosaic is of the body of The Christos being taken down from the cross and prepared for burial. The mosaics are some of the best quality I have ever seen. Construction of the Basilica commenced in AD 1063, and even its present stuning appearance dates back 800 years. The basilica is enormous, measuring 176 meters at its longest dimension. The craftsmanship is the best I have seen anywhere.

    Most tourists assume the massive and dominating Basilica di San Marco to be the Catholic cathedral of Venezia. However, it never has been. Note it's location adjacent to the Doges palace. The basilica was indeed a private place of worship for the doge and other wealthy elite of the Venezian empire. Commoners except those hired to perform, were strictly forbidden from entering. The acoustics of the basilica rival those of any theater in the world. Some of the world's greatest composers composed pieces specifically intended to be performed there. Most of the music especially crafted for this basilica can be described as religious music with a spicy secular flare.

    I have definately seen nothing like Basilica di San Marco in all of my travels. Just to think that Mark Twain said that it looks like a warty bug taking a walk. Everybody has an opinion. Must have been some amazing looking bugs inhabiting the Hanibal, Missouri area.

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  • hundwalder's Profile Photo

    Basilica di San Marco panoramic view

    by hundwalder Updated Mar 13, 2008

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    Basilica di San Marco and pigeons

    The Basilica of San Marco is probably the most memorable and artistic building that I have ever visited. Most of what you see of the exterior is about 800 years old. The craftsmanship and the quality of construction defies anything that I have ever seen. The mosaics above the five front entranceways and throughout the interior of the basilica are masterpieces. There are thousands of square meters of them. Exquisite sculpture, carving, and artistic shapes are found throughout the entire 180 meter long complex. Byzantine and gothic architecture are blended in perfect harmony.

    hint: Buy a 3 euro " museum " ticket which gives you excellent views of the basilica from the messanine level, free reign of the excellent museum, which includes the original famous statue of the horses and detailed well preserved intricate mosaics, and the chance to walk around on the vast exterior balconies. Waiting time in line is a fraction of the wait for the free entance to the basilica. You will probably spend a lot of money to visit Venezia. Don't spend 2 hours of your time standing in line for a 10 minute free visit of the basilica interior.

    Venetian crusaders looted and exhumed the tomb of San Marco ( the author of the gospel of St. Mark ) at Alexandria, Egypt, in AD 828, returned his remains to Venezia, stored them with the Doges for a couple hundred years, then built this incredible basilica to house them. This gave Venezia the religious prominance this commercial power had long hungered for. Many more looted treasures adorn the basilica and piazza. The symbol of San Marco is the ever present winged lion, seen displayed in a central position of prominance over the grand entrance way.

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  • grayfo's Profile Photo

    Saint Mark's Basilica - Basilica di San Marco

    by grayfo Written Mar 5, 2008

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    St Mark's Basilica is the most famous of Venice’s churches and lies on St Mark’s Square next to the Palace of the Doges. Since 1807 it has been the seat of the Patriarch of Venice, archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Venice.

    The Basilica was built over several centuries; the first church was consecrated in 832 and has since been frequently transformed and enriched with precious treasures, often from the Far East. The architecture is a mixture of Byzantine, Roman and Venetian.

    email biblioteca.proc@atriarcatovenezia.it

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  • olgaehr's Profile Photo

    St Mark's Basilica

    by olgaehr Updated Jan 18, 2008

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    Honestly I don't want to butcher St Mark's Basilica description, Wiki can do a much better job. It contains tons of art, architecture, history. From what I learned, Venetians stole St Mark's body from Alexandria and built the Basilica over his burial place.

    There are a few small separate sections-museums. There is a treasure museum with separate cost and upper section with separate cost too. Treasure museum is a bit freaky, lots of relics to look at.

    No photography allowed inside.

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  • ukirsari's Profile Photo

    the murals, chamber and bronze horses

    by ukirsari Updated Jan 18, 2008

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    the last supper and bronze horses (c) ukirsari

    exploring saint mark cathedral. the murals are beautiful. and the patron of saint mark himself that delivered by venetian merchants to replaced the previous patron of venice. at the roof, can be seen the replicas of bronze horses from byzantium. they kept the originals in the museum nearby in the complex of saint mark's cathedral.

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  • nihandenis's Profile Photo

    Do not go with your backpack

    by nihandenis Updated Nov 4, 2007

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    Basilica Di San Marco
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    It was very crowded but really worth to see inside. See the frescos & mosaics made by rubies, diamonds & emeralds. Do not go there with your back pack as the staff do not let you inside of the basilica.

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  • bren1125's Profile Photo

    Basilica of San Marco

    by bren1125 Written Sep 14, 2007

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    Basilica of San Marco
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    One of the most valuable churches in the world.

    It is home to over 4,000 feet of mosaic artwork, covering every surface of the interior with rubies, diamonds, emeralds, precious marbles and gold.

    The winged lion on the church is the symbol of Venice.

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  • ruki's Profile Photo

    Basilica di San Marco

    by ruki Updated Aug 14, 2007

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    This spectacularly church in Byzantine style located of course on Piazza San Marco. I don't know what is more impressive (interior or outside). At the top center of church there is the golden winged lion which is the symbol of Venice. There are five entrance doors with great decorated arches above. The central entrance is the largest one. All decorations and facade are of mosaics, arches and portals and there are so beautiful.

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  • msbrandysue's Profile Photo

    St. Mark's Basilica

    by msbrandysue Updated Jul 30, 2007

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    The Basilica in the background
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    St. Mark's Basilica, or in Italian Basilica di San Marco a Venezia, is the most famous church in Venice. The first St Mark's was a temporary building in the Doge’s Palace, constructed in 828. This was replaced by a new church on its present site in 832. The new church was burned in a rebellion in 976, rebuilt in 978 and again to form the basis of the present basilica in 1063. Recently, historian Andrew Chugg has suggested that the body of St. Mark interred in the Basilica may be the body of Alexander the Great. Chugg bases his theory on the fact that Alexander's body was "lost" at about the same time as the body of St. Mark was "found" in Alexandria and taken to Venice. They are currently trying to get the Vatican to allow investigation of the body.

    While just staring in awe at the basilica make sure to notice the Triumphal Quadriga or Horses of Saint Mark. This was, personally, the best story behind the basilica. A quadriga is a four-horse chariot, raced in the Olympic Games and other sacred games, and represented the usual chariot of gods and heroes on Greek vases and bas-reliefs. The quadriga was adopted in ancient Roman chariot racing. Quadrigas became a natural emblem of triumph, victory or fame. In classical mythology, quadrigas were the vehicles of the gods; Apollo was often depicted driving his quadriga across the heavens, bringing daylight with him and dispersing the darkness of night. Well, in 1797, Napoleon carried the quadriga off to Paris where they were used in the design of the Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel. From that date Italians have HATED Napoleon. After Napoleon was captured the Venetians went to Paris and brought their horses back home. However, due to the effects of atmospheric pollution, the original quadriga was retired to a museum and replaced with a replica in the 1980s. The Triumphal Quadriga in Venice is the only surviving ancient quadriga. Don't bypass these historical markers.

    Much of the historical information was taken from Wikipedia.

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    Basillica di San Marco Free Tour

    by SJTravel Written Jul 9, 2007

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    St. Mark's Basillica offers free tours in English, French, and Italian at 11AM almost every day. The tour meets in the Atrium of the Basillica and starts a little after 11. Don't be fooled because before 11AM, there is another tour that meets outside and costs money. The tour guide will tell you that the tour includes all of the entrance fees to the basillica (which it does) but it also includes the tour fee (I can't remember off the top of my head what that is though). But if you just wait in line and get into the Atrium, then you can get the Basillica's operated free tour. I really recommend the tour. My tour guides name was Renzi and she was absolutely fabulous. She gave us great information about the Basillica and Venice in general. The tour is only supposed to last an hour, but ours ended up lasting about 1.5 hours, which I thought was great. We asked a lot of questions and instead of skimping on information so that we could end when the hour was up, she let us know everything she had. I definitely recommend this tour if you have the time. The tour guide is also going to recommend going to see the Golden Altar piece, it does't cost very much to go and see it, but it isn't that great. It is nice if you like gold and seeing a bunch of jems, but I didn't think it was that worth it (for the time or the money). I think it is better to spend the money on a souvenir, unless you like things like that. I love art, but I just didn't think it was as spectacular as it was described. However, I definitely recommend the free guided tour because it will make you appreciate the Basillica and Venice in a way you wouldn't prior to that. The Basillica holds a lot of political and religious symbolism both for Venice and for the church itself. And it also allows you to linger in the atrium and really get a good look, which you wouldn't get to if you were just going on your own.

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