Ranking of the 10 largest and beautiful churches in the world

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Lluis Enric Mayans

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

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Over the centuries, the religious path of many peoples of the world has given birth to Cathedrals, Basilicas and Churches that still persist today and indeed, in some cases they have become real symbols, as well as destinations for prayer and pilgrimage. But which are the most fascinating churches from an architectural point of view? What are the churches to visit at least once in a lifetime?
To answer this question we asked you community members via a survey. The following is the special ranking of 10 most beautiful churches in the world second . Mark them for your future trips!

NB: The following ranking is the result of a survey that actively involved the members of the Community. Over 10.000 users were asked to express their preferences, choosing 10 churches from the over 150 selected by our editorial staff.

10 - Shrine of Our Lady of Las Lajas (Colombia): 4232 votes

Majestic structure built in 1916 in the canyon of the Guaitara river, with a bridge connecting it to the rock face. Here, according to a local legend, Our Lady appeared.
The architecture of this Sanctuary, from a height of over 100 meters, it is in full Gothic style, and the location chosen for its highly suggestive construction. The current building was erected to replace a previous chapel dating from the th century.

9 - Hallgrimur Church, Reykjavik (Iceland): 4410 votes

Lutheran place of worship located in the center of Reykjavik, the capital of Iceland.
Built during the 1900s (the last stone was laid in 1983), given its height of 74,5 meters this church can be identified from any area of ​​the city. One of the major peculiarities is the facade, made up of concrete blocks arranged in the shape of wings on the sides of the bell tower.

8 - Harajuku Protestant Church, Tokyo (Japan): 4711 votes

Church built in recent years, in 2005, with a structure made up of 7 elements (six large arches above the nave and a bell tower) which correspond to the 7 days of Creation and the 7 Eastern Churches.
The ceiling is created to leave a natural reverberation for 2 seconds, to provide the faithful and tourists with a unique listening experience. The airy space it allows the light to pass through the arches illuminating the faithful: the symbol of light is a clear reference to the Holy Spirit. The Church is also used as a concert location, given its own excellent acoustics and the comfortable loggias positioned right inside the arches.

7 - Co-Cathedral of St Michael and St Gudula, Brussels (Belgium): 4882 votes

This church located a stone's throw from the historic center of Brussels è the most important Catholic place of worship in the city.
Its construction began in 1226, and the facade has, as typical of many Gothic cathedrals, 3 facades: two on the arms of the transept and one, the main one, to the west, with 3 portals and closed between two twin towers. Inside, in the center of the nave there is the splendid baroque pulpit depicting Adam and Eve expelled from the garden of Eden.

6 - St. Basil's Cathedral, Moscow (Russia): 5126 votes

Cathedral of the Russian Orthodox Church located on the famous Red Square.
This particular church was erected during the 1500s and is registered in the World Heritage Site according to UNESCO. Secularized in 1929, according to some its shape resembles the flames of a bonfire rising to the sky.

5 - Milan Cathedral (Italy): 5970 votes

Church that for many of us needs no introduction: it is the imposing Cathedral located in the heart of Milan and symbol of the Medegina city.
Its construction began at the end of the fourteenth century, but still today - in correspondence with the famous saying - it is partly unfinished. The style is a perfect mix between Gothic and Neoclassical, and inside there are a series of funerary monuments: there lie the remains of several archbishops, including those of San Carlo Borromeo.

4 - Cathedral of Saint John the Divine, New York (USA): 5995 votes

American jewel located in Manhattan and still unfinished: despite this, with its length of 180 m and the height of 70 m according to some it is the largest Cathedral in the world.
Its construction began at the end of the th century, with projects repeated several times: in the end it was chosen Gothic style. Inside, one cannot fail to notice the grandeur of the choir, with its gray granite columns; and then there is the organ, from a estimated value of $ 8 million. Also not to be missed are the side chapels where human activities are depicted.

3 - Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, Florence (Italy): 6158 votes

Immense work located in the city center of Firenze: every year it attracts millions of visitors, who don't just admire the interior but climb to the top of the Brunelleschi's dome.
The construction of the Cathedral was finished in the middle of the Renaissance, in 1463, and inside it is visible the largest area decorated with frescoes in the world, consisting of 3.600 square meters and carried out by Vasari and Zuccari. The facade is from the modern era: it dates back to 1887.

2 - Cathedral of Brasilia, Brasilia (Brazil): 6394 votes

A modern cathedral, just like the city that hosts it: the building was completed in 1970.
Hyperboloidal in shape, the reinforced concrete structure covers an area of ​​about 70 m from which columns rise. The glass roof transmits the feeling that the Cathedral rises towards the sky. In the square in front there are 4 bronze sculptures representing the 4 evangelists.

1 - Notre-Dame Cathedral, Paris (France): 7181 votes

Main Parisian place of worship and seat of the bishopric and of the archdiocese. It was consecrated in 1882.
The building is known all over the world, and is one of the most visited in Paris: registered in the UNESCO World Heritage Site, during the French Revolution there were many damages that led to extensive renovations. Even the famous stained glass windows they have been rebuilt several times over time: the current ones date back to 1965.

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