Basilica Papale di Santa Maria Maggiore, a World Heritage site crowning the top of the Esquiline Hill, features fifth-century mosaics that are some of the oldest representations of the Virgin Mary. This ancient church is renowned for all its ancient mosaics, which are particularly impressive when the floodlights are turned on. The depictions of the site's triumphal arch and the nave served as models for many other representations of the Virgin Mary created during subsequent centuries. The building contains a 14th-century bell tower, the highest in the city. The site's 16th-century coffered ceiling is said to be gilded with Incan gold that Christopher Columbus initially brought for his patrons, Spain's joint rulers Ferdinand and Isabella. The church also includes a museum that details the history of the site and features several notable works of art. Using our international travel planner, Rome attractions like Basilica Papale di Santa Maria Maggiore can form part of a personalized travel itinerary.
Basilica Papale di Santa Maria Maggiore reviews
We found the security to be I'll mannered, loud and not fitting to be in a religious place. They seemed irritated at everyone and everything. more »
The Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore (Basilica Papale di Santa Maria Maggiore)—among the first churches in the world dedicated to the Virgin Mary—sits on the summit of Esquiline Hill. An... more »
Oh my God! it's a great moment for us to see this amazing place. I think we past by at least 20 times and decided to enter the church. We're amazed at the details, the history and art. If in Rome a most see place and it free to enter however, don't forget to donate. Don't be discouraged by my photos my children takes better photos on their cameras.
Gorgeous and enormous. One of those things that makes you stop in awe. Regardless of religion, the architecture and art contained within are gorgeous, never mind the services and singing. It’s also free - so easily worth a stop in to sit, meditate and rest while you listen to the choirs or organs.
Plan your trip to Rome
Get a personalized tripA complete day by day itinerary
based on your preferences
Customize itRefine your trip. We'll find the
best routes and schedules
Book itChoose from the best hotels
and activities. Up to 50% off
Manage itEverything in one place.
Everyone on the same page.
Popular things to do in Rome
Side trips from Rome
Historic Sites in Rome
Hidden gems in Rome
Shopping in Rome
Nearby attractions in Rome
Trips to Basilica Papale di Santa Maria Maggiore by other users
9 days in Rome BY A USER FROM GHANA Chiesa di Sant'Ignazio di Loyola Santa Maria in Trastevere Vatican Museums 9 days in Rome BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES Cupola di San Pietro St. Peter's Basilica Piazza Navona 22 days in Europe BY A USER FROM MALAYSIA London Paris Venice 59 days in Western Europe BY A USER FROM ISRAEL Lindos Corfu Town Ravello 13 days in Italy BY A USER FROM UNITED ARAB EMIRATES Rome Florence Venice 4 days in Rome BY A USER FROM TURKEY Church of St. Louis of the French Piazza Navona Museo Nazionale di Castel Sant'Angelo