Ben Squires


10 beautiful churches you must see in person

10 beautiful churches you must see in person

From La Sagrada Familia to Le Mont-Saint-Michel, there’s no shortage of beautiful churches in the world to visit as a tourist.

We’ve put together a selection of 10 of the most beautiful churches in the world. No matter what you believe, these architecturally ambitious, awe inspiring buildings are impressive.

To view the churches on the list, scroll through the gallery above. 

1. St Basil’s Cathedral, Russia

Built from 1555-61 on orders from Ivan the Terrible, St Basil’s Cathedral sits in Moscow’s Red Square and for a time was the city’s tallest building.

2. St Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City

One of the most renowned examples of Renaissance architecture, St Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City is one of the largest churches in the world.

3. La Sagrada Familia, Spain

Still incomplete, construction on La Sagrada Familia commenced in 1882 and combines Gothic and curvilinear Art Nouveau forms.

4. Borgund Stave Church, Norway

The best preserved of Norway’s 28 extant stave churches, Borgund Stave Church is now used as a fascinating museum.

5. Church of St George, Ethiopia

Carved from a type of limestone, the Church of St George and has been referred to by many people as the Eighth Wonder of the World.

6. Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, Italy

This iconic structure is the main church of Florence and was completed in 1436. The exterior is faced with pink and green marble panels.

7. Le Mont-Saint-Michel, France

Located at the mount of the Couesnon River off France’s north-western coast, Le Mont-Saint-Michel has been occupied since the 8th century.

8. Church of Saint Stephanos, Iran

This Armenian monastery is situated in a deep canyon long the Arax river. Completed in the 9th century, it has since been rebuilt after earthquake damage.

9. Hagia Sophia, Turkey

Famous for its massive dome, Hagia Sophia was completed in 1520 and is considered by many as the epitome of Byzantine architecture.

10. Notre Dame, France

One of the finest examples of French Gothic architecture, Notre Dame is among the largest and most well-known church buildings in the world. 

Related links:

12 odd (but amazing) toilets from around the world

10 most amazing man-made structures

When I retired I drove a motorhome around the world