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Basilica di San Domenico, Siena

4.2
#5 of 19 in Historic Sites in Siena
Religious Site Church
Medieval Basilica di San Domenico dates from 1226, and still contains the original rectangular nave and transverse roof beams--as well as the head and finger of St. Catherine of Siena. Legend has it that her mother begged the Dominicans to bury St. Catherine's body at Siena, and as a compromise they sent only her head. The cathedral's towering transepts and small chapels are home to a plethora of Renaissance frescoes and paintings--including the only genuine portrait of St. Catherine of Siena, by Andrea Vanni. Put Basilica di San Domenico into our Siena family vacation planner and find out what's close by, where to stay, and where to head next.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
533 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • Austere Cistercian Gothic style Basilica and massive brick. The Interior contains several chapels and several art pieces. Among the chapels are important one where Santa Caterina prayed and one where you kept your relic in a beautiful Renaissance structure. There is also a crypt that is worth a look
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  • What a special place to visit. They have the saint's incorrupt head on display in a lateral chapel. The inside is perhaps surprisingly austere- having a guided explanation helps. There is a gift shop....  more »
  • This church is quite boring inside and definitely nothing special. The main thing to see here are the mummified head and thumb of Catherine of Siena. You can be in and out in max 10 minutes.  more »
Google
  • This church is dedicated to St. Catherine of Siena one of the doctors of the church. Worth a visit for those who like to connect better with the life of the saint.
  • Good views of siena
  • St Catherine skull and thumb is here as are all the flags of Siena
  • I mean, How often do you get a chance to see a 635 year old Saint's head in a bronze box?
  • Less than attractive, if a little plane. But its a big one.

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Where to stay in Siena

To enjoy panoramic views of Siena's historical old town, check into a luxury hotel in the city center. If you are looking to escape the activity of the main tourist areas, consider staying at a hostel or guesthouse just outside the central areas. Private multi-room villas in the residential neighborhoods offer landscaped outdoor space and secure parking. For something a little different and considerably less expensive, explore one of many B&Bs in the vineyards and olive groves of Siena's countryside.
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