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.
Tours To Basilica Papale di Santa Maria Maggiore
Passion of Christ Walking Tour in Rome BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $76
Duration: 3 hours
Private Tour: Christian Rome BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $394
Duration: 6 hours
Private Tour: Holy Sites of Rome BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $327
Duration: 7 hours
Basilica Papale di Santa Maria Maggiore Reviews
How lucky can you get? On the day 5 individuals were being canonized at St Peter's we visited this beautiful house of contemplation and were treated to high mass. We aren't all religious but were... more »
Beautiful 3rd Century Basilica we visited in the Trastevere district. There was a funeral about to start when we arrived, so our visit was cut a little short, but gave us an opportunity to sit at... 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 planA complete day-by-day itinerary
based on your preferences
Customize itRefine your plan. 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
See all ›
Hidden gems in Rome
See all ›
See all ›
Nearby attractions in Rome
Plans to Basilica Papale di Santa Maria Maggiore by other users
43 days in Italy BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM June, popular sights Preferences: June Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 12 days in Europe BY A USER FROM PORTUGAL July, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, popular sights Preferences: July, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 51 days in Italy BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA July, popular sights Preferences: July Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 21 days in Europe BY A USER FROM INDIA July, slow & easy, hidden gems Preferences: July Attraction style: Hidden gems Pace: Slow & easy 59 days in Europe BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES January, popular & hidden gems Preferences: January Attraction style: Popular & hidden gems Pace: Medium 49 days in Europe BY A USER FROM NEW ZEALAND July, popular sights Preferences: July Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium