Basilica San Nicola

Basilica San Nicola, Bari

Basilica San Nicola
4.5
Religious Sites • Churches & Cathedrals
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7:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Monday
7:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Tuesday
7:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Wednesday
7:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Thursday
7:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Friday
7:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Saturday
7:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Sunday
7:00 AM - 10:00 PM
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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4.5
4,457 reviews
Excellent
3,245
Very good
1,043
Average
147
Poor
8
Terrible
14

PaulB
Maastricht, The Netherlands2,688 contributions
The Basilica of Saint Nicholas was built in the end of the 11th century Saint Nicholas and is an example of the Romanesque architecture in thios part of Italy, but also has Byzantine influences

The church has a rectangular ground plan, with a crypt in the basement that contains the grave of Saint Nicholas.
The interior is awesome, especially the gold blade ceiling with paintings.

Admission is free, although a (small) donation will always be appreciated.
Written August 2, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Jesmond S
Pembroke, Malta136 contributions
This basilica is more than 800 years old and the its magnificent architecture attests to the type of buildings that were built at that time - Romanesque in style - majestic and in a way simple. The ceiling is quite elaborately designed. It is definitely worth visiting.
Written July 11, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Mira V
Smarje Pri Jelsah, Slovenia347 contributions
Bari is a busy port by the Adriatic shore. The old part of the town is very interesting, with narrow winding streets like most old town centres in southern Italy. The basilica of St. Nicholas is a must see as St. Nicholas is a very popular saint. Outside, the basilica is somewhat different in shape if compared to churches in general, it does not look like a typical church. Inside, there is a row of white arches under the ceiling, the bishop's throne is also attractive. The figure of St. Nicholas inside the basilica was not very appealing to me, the statue outside is much more elegant. The most interesting part of the basilica is the crypt with the saint's tomb containing relics of the saint's body. The crypt also contains a pillar which once used to stand in the middle of the place and a legend says it helped women to find husbands (with the help of St. Nicholas) if they circled around the pillar. Evidently, the pillar attracted too much attention and is now standing in the corner, protected with an iron grid. Try walking around it if you can!
Written October 31, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

duhoz
Beroun, Czech Republic5,726 contributions
The crypt of the Basilica house the relics of St Nicolas or also know as Father Christmas. The crypt with 26 columns built in Byzantine and Romanesque style.
The basilica was built between 1087 and 1197, I enjoyed very dominant gold wooden ceiling from 17th Century, spectacular columns.
Written November 5, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

AMsays
Thornhill, Canada3,729 contributions
This basilica founded in 1087 in part to receive St Nicholas’ relics from Myra (Byzantium). The saint became entrenched in Bari and brought with him pilgrims good for the economy. Born in Asia Minor (Greece) he became known as the Wonderworker for all the miracles attributed to him. He rests in a tomb here and some Christmas traditions are attributed to him. The basilica is simple both in and out. Look up. The ceiling is unusually decorated in wood and gold. Roman Catholics and Orthodox Christians make pilgrimages here. This is a busy yet happy location with lots to see and do around the basilica.
Written July 31, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Jeff M
DeKalb, IL14 contributions
Friends
Beautiful church untouched by time. It was a privilege to visit the basilica and tomb of St. Nick. Take time while there to learn about the Saint and how the Christmas tradition started. The area outside the basilica is fun with lots of shops and restaurants.
Written July 14, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Alessandro F
Milan, Italy25,715 contributions
This beatiful church was built between 1087 and 1197, during the Italo-Norman domination of Apulia.
The outside is rather square but the inside is a wonderful sequence of arches showing an unforgettable golden ceiling
Written February 25, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

BRYNSI
LONDON148 contributions
We had the pleasure (or not so) of having a day at shore in Bari in October 2008, while on a Cruise ship around the Eastern Mediterranean.
Initially, we thought the town would be a pit stop and back on board by lunchtime, but were pleasantly surprised, we walked the City walls and visited the Castello, built in the 13th Century and later adapted into a fortified palace in the 16th Century. The Castello dominates the western side of the harbour area and is well worth a visit.
However our Highlight of Bari was the Basilica di San Nicola, yes you have guessed correctly, the Church of St Nicholas (Santa Claus!).
Founded in 1087 and completed in 1197, a place of pilgrimage to the saint within the Christian World for hundreds of years, St Nicholas being the patron saint of Children, Seamen and Prisoners, (put them all together makes for a very odd combination) .
To our delight we entered the most striking Romanesque Church, which once within its walls, we could not help but be impressed by the interior.
The "Byzantine" (I hope I do not stand corrected on this) paintings and mosaics were breath-taking. We spent a great deal of time admiring the frescos on the ceiling, although we are not overly religious, we could not help but be overwhelmed by all that we saw....until......................yes we spotted a sign to the Crypt........it was the tomb of Saint Nick...........what a delight...........we would see where Santa Claus was buried!

We raced down the flight of stairs to the Crypt, which although richer in decoration than the main church above, was just as delightful, with numerous columns and paintings....then the cherry on the cake, the Silver Alter, lying above the vault containing the remains of St.Nicholas.

It was a fantastic experience, one I would not like to have missed.

Before leaving the Basilica di San Nicola, we took the opportunity to view the Icon Effigy of St.Nicholas, which was strange as he was dressed in a Yellow Flowing Number, then again it was a hot day, not really the weather for Red Velvet with White Fur Trim.
Our final stop was into the Church's gift shop to buy lots of postcards of the Crypt of Saint Nicholas to send back to our nephews and nieces in the UK, we wrote pretty much the same message on each card,
"It's Official, Santa Claus is Dead, Christmas is cancelled"

Since that holiday, our telephone never rings.......have we upset our siblings!
Written September 28, 2009
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

TravellingGypsy
Tirana, Albania40 contributions
Basilica di San Nicola was one of the most beautiful churches I've seen in Europe. When you enter, sit down at a pew, take in the main altar, then look up at the ceiling. The painting covers the entire ceiling and is very detailed, dark and light. I'm not sure who painted it. The crypt for San Nicola is below, however we were not able to really view it on our visit because there was a mass being held.
Written April 1, 2008
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Joseph G
Montreal, Canada4,644 contributions
This church with an unusual mostly square configuration and two massive towers in the façade is an important place for pilgrimage for Catholics and Eastern Orthodox.
Constructed in 1087 (with the arrival of the relics of Saint-Nicholas from Mira, Asia Minor when it came under Turkish rule) and in 1197 it is in Romanesque style and has an amazing crypt with a chapel and many relics.
The above-ground church has a central nave and two side naves divided by granite columns and pilaster with a beautiful ceiling.
The presbytery is separated from the rest of the building by three arches sustained by Byzantine-style columns. Above the passageway is the Matroneum: the gallery reserved for women. The rear of the building a contrasting curvy-shaped structure.
This is a must see site while in Bari.
Written October 11, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Basilica San Nicola

Basilica San Nicola is open:
  • Sun - Sun 7:00 AM - 10:00 PM
  • Mon - Sat 7:00 AM - 8:30 PM
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