St. Mark’s, the soul of Venice
The great heart of Venice, the Basilica of
San Marco is one of Italy's and the world's most recognizable (and photographed) landmarks and the city's most important church. Its dazzling polychrome façade with its marbles and mosaics, spires and domes, and famous winged lion, the symbol of the city for centuries, is revealed in all of its glory. The interior, featuring an abundance of exquisitely gilded Byzantine mosaics, is definitely worth a visit. A visit to its Museum and treasury, located on the upper floor, is a not-to-be-missed highlight. While in the area, make sure to ascend to the top of its bell tower, which offers superb views over the city. The Basilica of San Marco is a Catholic church that welcomes worshippers and tourists alike. This is a place of worship and on entering visitors are asked to respect the rules: appropriate clothing must be worn, taking photographs is forbidden and visitors are asked to lower their voices at all times. The church is open daily for prayer and at certain times or on certain days it is entirely given over to religious ceremonies and visits are suspended. For reasons of safety, heavy luggage must be left outside (luggage can be deposited in Ateneo San Basso, in Piazzetta dei Leoncini, in front of the Porta dei Fiori, north facade). For more information visit www.basilicasanmarco.it.