5 of the Most Famous Churches in the World

You don’t have to be any specific religion to appreciate the beauty and architecture of church buildings. Easter Sunday is coming up, and it is the biggest day of the year for church attendance. Are you ready to see 5 of the most famous churches in the world, because they are simply stunning?! 

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St. Peter's Basilica, Rome Italy

Church St. Peters Basilica Rome Italy

St. Peter’s Basilica was built in 1506. In addition to being one of the most famous churches in the world, it is also the largest Catholic Church in the world! It is well known as being the burial ground for the apostle Peter

St. Peter's Basilica Church Rome Italy

If you are only visiting the Basilica in Rome, you should plan for about 1 hour or less to take in the amazing Renaissance Style architecture. Tripadvisor ranks St. Peter’s Basilica #1 out of 53 things to do in the Vatican City. 

St. Peter's Basilica Church Rome Italy

When we went to Rome to celebrate my daughter’s 16th birthday we did a skip the line guided tour to visit St. Peter’s Basilica. It was incredible! Did you know that Michelangelo also painted the ceiling in St. Peter’s Basilica? It’s a once in a lifetime experience to see it. If you want to take a virtual tour of the Basilica, and other famous Roman sites, read my fun post How to Travel Virtually From Your Home to Rome.

Church St Peters Basilica Rome Italy

Admission:

I STRONGLY recommend that you do a Skip the Line Guided Tour for your visit. The lines are always VERY long for tourist attractions in Rome. There are lots of different options to choose from.

Use Get Your Guide and Viator to book in advance. That way you have everything you need right on your phone. The best part is most of the options let you cancel within 24 hours of your scheduled experience with NO FEES! So if your plans change, there’s no risk.

For Tickets to the Vatican, Sistine Chapel, and St. Peter’s Basilica Skip the Line 3.5 hour Guided Tour CLICK HERE. 🎟

Early Access: CLICK HERE for tickets to a 3 hour Papal Audience, St. Peter’s Basilica Tour and Vatican Gardens tour by Minibus. 🎟

CLICK HERE for tickets to the Original St. Peter’s Dome Climb, Basilica, and Vatacombs 2 hour Tour!  🎟

Sagrada Familia, Barcelona Spain

Church Sagrada Familia Barcelona Spain

The Basilica de la Sagrada Familia is a stunning Roman Catholic church in Barcelona, Spain. The construction of the basilica started in 1882 and it is still evolving today. When it is completed it is expected to be the tallest church in the world. You can see the evolution of this incredible building on Sagrada Familia’s website.

Approximately 2.8 million people come to visit this breath-taking church every year. It’s not hard to see why Tripadvisor ranks the Basilica de la Sagrada Familia #1 out of 1,213 things to do in Spain. It’s said to be the MOST FAMOUS church in the world so make sure you add it to your bucket list!

Church Sagrada Familia Barcelona Spain
Source: Pixabay.com

Architecture:

The interior of the Basilica de la Sagrada Familia looks like a movie. It is filled with unusual shapes and lots of color! Check out their Instagram to see more amazing views. 

Antoni Gaudi is the architect who spent more than 40 years creating Sagrada Familia. You can see various works of Gaudi’s Art Nouveau style throughout Spain, but I think this one is especially different! It was his desire to serve God through architecture.  Although I have not seen this church yet, it is definitely on my bucket list to visit Barcelona! After studying about this in college, it would be a dream come true for me to see Antoni Gaudi’s work in person. 

Planning a visit:

Make sure you visit the official website for the visitation schedule because it does change periodically. You should plan for approximately 2-3 hours for your visit at la Sagrada Familia.

In order to maximize your time in Barcelona I’d strongly suggest that you purchase “skip the line” tickets from Get Your Guide. You will still have to go through security, but it’s more of a 20-30 minute process. IF YOU DON’T purchase skip the line tickets then you should expect to wait in line for 1-3 hours

Admission:

I STRONGLY recommend that you buy your tickets in advance because they are likely to sell out. There are lots of different options available.

Use Get Your Guide and Viator to book in advance. You will have everything you need right on your phone. The best part is if your plans change, most of the options let you cancel within 24 hours of your scheduled experience with NO FEES!

For Tickets to Sagrada Familia Skip the Line 1.5 hour Guided Tour CLICK HERE. 🎟

Priority Access: CLICK HERE for tickets to a 1.5 hour Barcelona Sagrada Familia Tour with Tower Entry. 🎟

CLICK HERE for tickets to a 2 hour PRIVATE TOUR of Sagrada Familia.  🎟

Cologne Cathedral, Cologne Germany

Cologne Cathedral Church Germany

The Cologne Cathedral is one of the most famous churches in Germany. You should set aside more than 3 hours to tour this massive Roman Catholic cathedral.

It holds several impressive titles including: the tallest twin-spired church in the world, largest façade of any church in the world, and largest Gothic Style church in the world! It’s obvious why Tripadvisor ranks the Cologne Cathedral Cathedral #1 out of 325 things to do in Cologne.

The Cologne Cathedral is more than just impressive Gothic Style architecture. It holds a large collection of unique relics including the oldest crucifix, remains of the three wise men, and ancient bells to name a few. Currently you are permitted to visit the cathedral, treasury, and climb the south tower. Make sure you visit the Cologne Cathedral website before you visit to make sure you are familiar with the important notices

The Cologne Cathedral was built in 1248 and declared a World Heritage site in 1996. This incredible building has been through World War II, when most of the city was destroyed, and it was hit 14 times. It needed some repairs, but it still stands tall and proud as a prominent landmark in the German city skyline

Cologne Cathedral Church Germany

Admission:

I STRONGLY recommend that you buy your tickets in advance because they are likely to sell out. There are lots of different options available.

Using Get Your Guide and Viator to book in advance. You will have everything you need right on your phone. If your plans change, most of the options let you cancel within 24 hours of your scheduled experience with NO FEES!

For Tickets to the Cologne Cathedral and Old Town 2 hour Guided Tour CLICK HERE. 🎟

CLICK HERE for tickets to a 2 hour Cologne City and Cathedral Tour Experience. 🎟

CLICK HERE for tickets to a 3 hour Cologne Walking Tour with Visit to the Cathedral.  🎟

Notre Dame, Paris France

Notre Dame Cathedral Paris France

Anyone who knows me knows that Paris is one of my favorite places to visit. I was fortunate enough to visit the Notre Dame Cathedral three times. Some of the best restaurants in Paris are located near Norte Dame. The Gothic Medieval Style Cathedral is a Parisian icon that was built in 1163. Tripadvisor ranks the Cathedral Notre-Dame de Paris #6 out of 3,306 things to do in Paris.

Notre Dame Church Paris France
Source: Pixabay.com

Since the devastating fire in 2019 the Medieval Catholic Cathedral has been closed. It is in the process of restoration, but visitors are still encouraged to appreciate the beautiful exterior of the detailed Gothic architecture and visit the Archaeological Crypt, which is open. Notre Dame is undeniably one of the most famous churches in the world. Fortunately, the cathedral is currently on track to reopen in 2024 when the Olympics are scheduled to be held in Paris. 

The fire in 2019 was not the first time that Notre Dame was damaged. The cathedral suffered neglect and war in the 1790’s. That loss is what prompted Victor Hugo to write the story Hunchback of Notre Dame. It won’t be long and the cathedral will once again be restored and open to the more than 13 million visitors that come each year.

Notre Dame Cathedral Paris France
Church Notre Dame Cathedral Paris France

Admission:

Although you can’t tour the inside of the Cathedral right now, there are still tours available of the exterior and the Archeological Crypt

Use Get Your Guide and Viator to book your tickets so you have everything right on your phone. The best part is most of the options let you cancel within 24 hours of your scheduled experience with NO FEES!

For Tickets to the 1.5 hour Notre-Dame, City Island and St Severin Church Guided Tour CLICK HERE. 🎟

PRIVATE TOUR GUIDE: CLICK HERE for tickets to a 2.5 hour Notre Dame & Sainte Chappelle Skip the Line Tour. 🎟

CLICK HERE for tickets to a 2 hour Notre Dame Outdoor Walking Tour with Crypt Entry.  🎟

Westminster Abbey, London England

Westminster Abbey Church London

Have you watched the Downton Abbey series? (I started watching it, but haven’t finish yet.)Downton Abbey is a famous Netflix series, and Westminster Abbey is one of the most famous churches in the world.  

Westminster Abbey has ALL of the amazing Gothic Style architecture, but it’s paired with the United Kingdom’s royalty vibes. In addition to being a Presbyterian Church holding 17 royal weddings, Westminster Abbey is also a burial place for over 3,000 people

Planning a visit:

You can expect to spend 1-2 hours visiting Westminster Abbey Church. Tickets are available to purchase on their website and it’s very easy to navigate. They offer upgrades for behind the scenes tours as well.  

It’s quite impressive that a church dating back to the 960-970’s is still holding its architectural value. Tripadvisor ranks Westminster Abbey #10 out of 2,424 things to do in London. 

Westminster Abbey is well known for it’s ties to royalty. It’s most recent royal wedding was when Prince William and Catherine Middleton got married in 2011. Before you start looking to reserving this wedding venue, keep in mind that only members of England’s royal family, members of the Order of the Bath, and people who live in Abbey’s precincts are allowed to get married there.  

Admission:

I recommend buying your tickets in advance for your visit. There are lots of different options out there.

Use Get Your Guide and Viator to book then you will have everything you need on your phone. The best part is most of the options let you cancel within 24 hours of your scheduled experience with NO FEES!

CLICK HERE for Westminster Abbey Entrance Tickets. 🎟

For Tickets to the 2-4 hour Westminster Abbey and Houses of Parliament Tour CLICK HERE. 🎟

CLICK HERE for tickets to a 2.5 hour SEMI-PRIVATE guided walking tour of London City Center Westminster.  🎟

If you liked 5 of the Most Famous Churches in the World, then you might also want to read 1 Thing you MUST do EVERY TIME you Travel.

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LET’S CONNECT: Out of 5 of the most famous churches in the world, which one have you visited or do you want to visit?

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