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St. John's Co-Cathedral, Valletta

4.7
#1 of 69 in Things to do in Valletta
Architectural Building Religious Site
Considered one the finest examples of High Baroque architecture in Europe, St. John's Co-Cathedral represents one of the world's celebrated churches. The impressive structure was built by the Knights of Malta between 1573 and 1578. Though the exterior is somewhat rough, resembling a military fort, the interior boasts intricately carved walls, a painted vaulted ceiling, and a marble floor made up of Knight's tombs. Visit the cathedral's seven chapels, all filled with elaborate riches and dedicated to the different patron saints of the Knights. Don't miss Caravaggio's masterpiece, "The Beheading of Saint John the Baptist" (1608) in the Oratory, for which it was commissioned. An informative audio guide is included in the price of admission. Note that high heels are not permitted in the cathedral to preserve the marble floor. Slippers can be purchased on site. For travelers who use our custom trip planner, Valletta holidays become easier to arrange, with trips to the St. John's Co-Cathedral and other attractions mapped out and timetabled.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
7,268 reviews
Google
4.7
  • We arrived at 16 25 and they closed the door in my face! We wanted to admire Caravaggio but don't have permission.
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  • An amazing cathedral in the heart of Valletta, while the 10 Euro entry fee for adults may put you off, it is definitely worth it and it is a rare occasion when the audio-guide (included in the price) ...  more »
  • A stupendous work of baroque architecture, no visit to Valletta is complete without a tour of this amazing Cathedral, built as the Knights of St John's conventual church and enriched with wondrous wor...  more »
Google
  • We went to see this church today Sunday. The mass was about to begin. As we were wearing summer clothes, we've been asked to cover my shoulder and wrapped around skirt if you were wearing shorts. Amazing structure.
  • Breath-taking from the moment you walk in. The price of the ticket includes an audio guide, which is really worth it. The history of this place is fascinating. A little surprise was the Caravaggio pieces, which I didn't know where part of the collection. Definitely worth visiting.
  • Such an incredible cathedral. Not the biggest cathedral, but it is very ornate and spectacular inside. The audio guide is included and one the best audio guides I have listened to. Super interesting to learn about the history of not only the cathedral, but of Valletta itself
  • Must see in Valletta, stunning cathedral, art and carvings are amazing, so much history and beauty in one place. Had a guided tour but would defintely visit again and have more time to see it fully. Two Caraveggio paintings were breathtaking.
  • Beautiful Cathedral in the middle of the town. It is worth a visit. Just 10€ adult and free for children

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Where to stay in Valletta

The small city of Valetta offers fewer lodging options than some of Malta's larger cities, but accommodations include everything from upscale hotels to less-expensive guesthouses. Stay in the city center at one of several old-fashioned hotels to be in close proximity to sights like St. Johns Co-Cathedral, the Presidential Palace, multiple museums, and a wide variety of restaurants. One fun option involves renting traditional Valletta houses that have been converted into rental properties and date back to the time of the Knights of Malta. Smaller bed and breakfasts are dispersed throughout the city. Book well in advance to avoid high prices.
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