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“Finest Cathedral in Genova”

Basilica di Santa Maria di Castello
Ranked #10 of 317 things to do in Genoa
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 28, 2012

With so many churches and cathedrals packed in the alleyways of the city, it's hard to visit them all. But this is one you shouldn't miss, especially if you're location scouting for your wedding in Italy.

3  Thank Bonnie M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"free tour"
in 3 reviews
"amazing church"
in 2 reviews
"cloisters"
in 10 reviews
"relics"
in 5 reviews
"volunteers"
in 5 reviews
"roman"
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"century"
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Reviewed April 25, 2012

Genova has no shortage of stunning churches to visit, including the tourist’s favorites San Lorenzo, Chiesa del Gesu and San Siro, but try not to miss the beautiful Romanesque Santa Maria di Castello built in the 12th century, with it’s cloisters, small spectacular museum, frescos, rectory and small garden; it’s full of treasures! Unfortunately, it can be a bit difficult to locate and it’s in an area that looks a bit dicey, but I have never had any problems, just visit during the daylight hours. Before entering, notice to the right of the front doors the large Tower of the Embriaci.

The church is usually open between 8-12 and 3-6 and often in the morning there is a volunteer who can tell you about the church (please give a small donation for this service). If you don’t speak Italian, ask to see if the English volunteer is there (usually on Wednesday mornings) he is excellent! I arrived most recently on a Wednesday morning and was delighted by the volunteer’s tour which lasted 45 minutes and included the locked, small museum with wonderful paintings, statues, an original Genova flag, gold woven vestments and architectural pieces. He also showed us in the main church the black Jesus, whose hair seemed to grow, the painting of a saint with 6 toes on each foot and the several completely different columns with different “recycled” cornices. The many side chapels were donated and built by the great families of the Genoese nobility and have beautiful art work. He also took us into the large cloister to see the masterpiece by Ravensburg: The Annunciation painted in 1451. There is some written information in English regarding this painting, but you would be well rewarded to read about this church before visiting to appreciate all it has to offer, or hope for an excellent volunteer! Your donation goes to the continued restoration of the church. If you have an extra day in Genova or just love to visit churches, this should be high on your list! Enjoy Genova!

13  Thank AnnArborMHT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 15, 2012

I think it is always worth one's time to visit churches when staying in Italian towns/cities and, Genova has many treasures to share! This Basilicata is quite sober compared to other local religious monuments.
I would suggest finding out about opening hours though because it stays closed quite often.

Thank Theetiquettorialist
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 6, 2012

Beautiful work done to the basilica after the war. Impressive statues in the chapels

2  Thank Voyagermundo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed 1 week ago
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Thank Francesco O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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