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Basilica of Saint Lawrence, Asheville

(4.7/5 based on 750+ reviews on the web)
Designed by Spanish architect Rafael Guastavino, Basilica of Saint Lawrence has the largest freestanding elliptical dome in North America, measuring 18 by 25 m (58 by 82 ft). Marvel at the saint statues from Italy and German stained-glass windows. In 1993, the site was granted the status of a Minor Basilica by Pope John Paul II. The surrounding grounds feature a life-size statue of the Virgin Mary. See representations of Mary, Christ, and the apostles elaborately memorialized in stained glass. Visit two chapels with marble reliefs, mosaics, icons, and statues. If you'd like a guided tour, you must reserve your spot at least a week prior. You can schedule a 25-minute tour after mass on weekends, or opt for more in-depth weekday tours that last about 45 minutes. Self-guided tours are also an option--pick up a brochure inside the building. Put Basilica of Saint Lawrence on your schedule, and learn what else deserves a visit by using our Asheville vacation route planner.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • On the outside is intricate architecture, a massive wooden door, and if you look carefully a surprise or two on both towers. The inside has a domed ceiling and very large stained glass pieces. A must ...  more »
  • Stop in to take a look, the roof is spectacular inside!! Easy to stop at when walking downtown. No admission charge.  more »
  • Interesting stone work, stained glass and statuary. European feel. Worth peaking in, whatever faith.  more »
Google
  • If you want to experience European architechture and a little bit of Spain (Rafael Guastavino) just enter and be silent. I am not Roman Catholic, yet I have sought refuge and peace here for decades. Sometimes the fragrance of the incense lingers while you look at the stained glass and dome structure. This is a true oasis from the hyperbolic tourism madness that plagues most of downtown.
  • Beautiful historical place you should stop at in Asheville. Beautiful craftsmanship and stained glass in the basilica!
  • Beautiful architecture with an amazing history. Experienced a wonderful Christmas Mass there with standing room only.
  • My best friend was married here last June. It was the most beautiful wedding I've been to, and the church resonated beautiful when the organist played her songs. Gorgeous!
  • Beautiful architecture and restful place. While my wife and I are not believers, this was an amazing place to visit and get awed by. It's small, so don't expect to spend too much time if you're not interested in talking to your imaginary friend...