Facts About St. Peter's Basilica

Facts about St. Peter's Basilica

St. Peter's Basilica is one of the most iconic landmarks in Rome and one of the most famous churches in the world. It is a major pilgrimage site for Catholics and an important tourist destination, attracting millions of visitors every year. The basilica is named after St. Peter, one of the twelve apostles of Jesus and the first bishop of Rome.There are many interesting facts about St. Peter's Basilica that make it a unique and fascinating place to visit. First, the basilica is the largest church in the world, covering an area of over 22,000 square meters. It took more than 120 years to build, and some of the world's most famous architects and artists contributed to its design and decoration. Facts about St. Peter's Basilica are truly awe-inspiring, as this iconic structure is considered to be one of the most significant religious and architectural landmarks in the world. Below are nine subtopics highlighting interesting and lesser-known facts about St. Peter's Basilica.

Another interesting fact about St. Peter's Basilica is that it is built on top of the site where St. Peter was buried. According to tradition, St. Peter was martyred in Rome in the first century AD and buried on Vatican Hill. The current basilica was built on top of an earlier church, which was constructed over the site of St. Peter's grave in the fourth century AD. One of the most impressive features of St. Peter's Basilica is its dome, which is one of the largest in the world. The dome was designed by Michelangelo, who also worked on many other parts of the basilica, including the famous Pietà sculpture. Visitors can climb to the top of the dome for stunning views of the city of Rome.


St. Peter's Basilica has a rich history dating back to the 4th century AD. It was built on the site where St. Peter, the first pope and leader of the early Christian church, was believed to have been buried. The original church was replaced by the current basilica in the 16th century under the patronage of Pope Julius II.

For More Info Checkout: St. Peter's Basilica History


The basilica was designed by some of the most prominent architects of the Renaissance period, including Bramante, Michelangelo, and Bernini. Its dome, which is the tallest in the world, was designed by Michelangelo and took 18 years to complete.

For More Info Checkout: St. Peter's Basilica Architecture


St. Peter's Basilica is one of the largest churches in the world, with a total area of 15,160 square meters (163,195 square feet). Its length is 220 meters (720 feet), its width is 150 meters (490 feet), and its dome is 136 meters (446 feet) high.


The basilica is home to numerous statues, including the famous bronze statue of St. Peter by Arnolfo di Cambio. Visitors can also see the 39 larger-than-life statues of the apostles and other saints that line the nave and aisles

Also Take a Look At: St. Peter's Basilica Statutes


Many prominent figures of the Catholic Church are buried in St. Peter's Basilica, including several popes, saints, and cardinals. The most famous tomb is that of St. Peter, which is located directly beneath the high altar.


One of the most famous artworks in St. Peter's Basilica is Michelangelo's Pieta, a stunning sculpture of the Virgin Mary holding the body of Jesus. It is considered to be one of Michelangelo's masterpieces and is located in the first chapel to the right of the entrance.


Beneath the basilica is a vast network of crypts and catacombs that date back to the early Christian era. Visitors can explore these underground chambers and see the tombs of numerous popes and saints.

Papal Conclaves

St. Peter's Basilica has played a significant role in the election of new popes for centuries. The Sistine Chapel, which is located in the Vatican Museums adjacent to the Basilica, is where the papal conclave is held. When a new pope is elected, the announcement is made from the balcony of St. Peter's Basilica.


What is St. Peter's Basilica?

St. Peter's Basilica is a world-renowned church located in Vatican City, Rome. It is considered one of the holiest Catholic shrines and the largest church in the world. The Basilica was built over the tomb of Saint Peter, who was one of the twelve apostles of Jesus Christ.

Must Checkout - Vatican Library

When was St. Peter's Basilica built?

St. Peter's Basilica was built during the Renaissance period, between 1506 and 1626. The construction was initiated by Pope Julius II and continued by a succession of popes until its completion.

Must Read - Vatican Museum Rules

What are some interesting facts about St. Peter's Basilica?

  • The Basilica's dome was designed by Michelangelo and is one of the most recognizable features of the church.
  • The Basilica is home to many famous artworks, including Michelangelo's Pieta and Bernini's Baldacchino.
  • The Basilica is built on the site of an earlier church, which was constructed by Emperor Constantine in the 4th century AD.
  • The church is also home to the tombs of many popes, including Pope John Paul II.

Can visitors enter St. Peter's Basilica?

Yes, visitors are welcome to enter St. Peter's Basilica. However, there are some restrictions and dress codes that visitors must adhere to. Visitors are required to cover their shoulders and knees, and hats are not allowed inside the church.

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Are there guided tours available for St. Peter's Basilica?

Yes, there are guided tours available for St. Peter's Basilica. Visitors can join a group tour or arrange a private tour with a guide. These tours can provide visitors with a deeper understanding of the history and significance of the Basilica.

Do Visit: Obelisk of St. Peter's Square

Is there an admission fee for St. Peter's Basilica?

No, there is no admission fee for St. Peter's Basilica. However, visitors may have to pay a fee for certain guided tours or special exhibitions. Donations are always welcome to help maintain and preserve the Basilica.

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What are some fun facts about St. Peter's Basilica?

St. Peter's Basilica, located in Vatican City, is one of the world's largest churches. It took over 120 years to complete, features a stunning dome designed by Michelangelo, and houses priceless artworks, including Michelangelo's Pieta. The basilica's dome is so big that it could fit the Statue of Liberty inside.


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