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Arcibasilica di San Giovanni in Laterano, Rome
(4.8/5 based on 6,500+ reviews on the web)
The official ecclesiastical seat of the pope, Arcibasilica di San Giovanni in Laterano is the oldest church in the city. Commissioned by Emperor Constantine, the church was consecrated in the year 324 CE, the first Christian structure to be completed in the city. Though massively renovated over the years, the interior owes much of its current appearance to Francesco Borromini, a prominent Baroque architect. The building's most notable features are the gilded ceiling, a 15th-century mosaic floor, and a central nave lined by 5 m (16 ft) high statues of the apostles. Over the papal altar, you can find a baldachin--an ornamental structure resembling a canopy--that contains the relics of the heads of saints Peter and Paul. The monument to Pope Sylvester II is rumored to have sweated and squeaked on numerous occasions when the death of a pope was imminent. Put Arcibasilica di San Giovanni in Laterano into our Rome itinerary planner and find out what's close by, where to stay, and where to head next.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • THis is Mater Eclesias, This means the most important church in Rome. Do not miss the Holy Steps accross the street andf Constantine baptistery nearby 
  • I think we needed to spend more time here as we somehow missed the Scala Sancta. These are the Holy Stairs, that according to tradition, form the staircase which once led to the praetorium of Pontius ...  more »
  • Few know that this papal Basilica and the most important Church in the world to the Catholic Church, because the Pope is the Bishop of this church. His throne there and not in the Church of St. Peter. Well worth visiting
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  • Magnifient basilic. A lot of tombs, apostle's statues are giantic and well executed.
  • This was very close to my hostel firing my stay in Rome. Looks awesome at night
  • This amazing basilica was about a 10 minute walk from the hostel I was staying at in Rome. From the outside, it's looks huge, with plenty of Saint's decorating the top of the structure, but seems pretty common. The real beauty lies on the inside.The huge statues, colorful ceiling and magnificent paintings are a sight for sore eyes and will take the breath away. I caught mass on a sunny Sunday morning, and the colored glass in the church is even more vibrant with the sun shining through it. If you're in Rome, you should definitely stop by this beauty.
  • One of the biggest church in the world! Once you come inside, you cannot believe how big it is: from inside seems more bigger then it seems from outside. A great architectural example
  • The cathedral of Rome, first great Christian church in Rome. As it reads on the facade in Latin "The mother and head of all churches of the city and the world"