When it comes to listing stunning churches over the centuries, Skyscanner finds that man has outdone himself consistently – check out some of the most beautiful cathedrals from around the world.
A Roman Catholic cathedral in Paris, the Notre-Dame is a fine example of French Gothic architecture. The Cathedral was desecrated to quite an extent in the 18th century during the French Revolution, but has now been restored to its original Gothic state.
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Probably the most spectacular church in the world to be still under construction, the Sagrada Família is already a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Gaudi’s incomplete interpretation of Gothic architecture draws people from around the world to Barcelona.
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3. St Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City (Rome)
St. Peter’s Basilica is unmatched in beauty and splendour. One of the most sacred of Catholic sites, St. Peter’s Basilica is also one of the largest churches in the world. Apart from the stunning architecture, St. Peter’s is home to renowned relics and artefacts, including works of Michelangelo and Bernini.
A relatively modern structure, this eye catching cathedral was completed as recently as 1970. Most of the cathedral is below ground, what we see in the first image is only the roof with its bell tower.
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Photo credit: Sandy Kemsley
Created as a church, turned into a mosque and now in its final avatar as a museum, Hagia Sophia is famous for its massive dome. A very painstaking restoration effort gave the structure back its some of its Christian mosaics that had been lost during its conversion into a mosque.
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Photo credit: Kah-Wai Lin
In a city full of beautiful buildings, Saint Basil’s cathedral is possibly the most beautiful – owing to its unexpected and unusual design. Nothing like this exists in Byzantine architecture around Russia. It also marks the geometric centre of Moscow.
Photo credit: Matthew Goulding
7. Las Lajas Sanctuary, Colombia
Las Lajas Sanctuary is a minor basilica church located dramatically inside a canyon of the Guáitara River in southern Colombian Department of Nariño. It rises a hundred meters from the bottom of the canyon and is accessed from the other side by a 50-metre tall connecting bridge.
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Photo credit: Boris G
This unusual looking church is said to be inspired by the basalt lava flows that make up Iceland’s landscape. At 74.5 metres high, the church is also used as an observation tower. Visitors can take a lift up to the viewing deck and check out Reykjavik and its surrounding mountains.
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Photo credit: Terry Feuerborn
Built in the 10th century and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Westminster Abbey is an icon of the city of London. This Gothic beauty is one of the most notable religious structures anywhere in the world.
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A 17th century beauty, Saint Mark’s Basilica is one of the best known examples of Byzantine architecture. Saint Mark’s Basilica has been a symbol of Venetian wealth and opulence, made obvious by the lavish design and gold ground mosaics.
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Photo credit: -Reji
One of Ethiopia’s eleven monolithic rock hewn churches from the 12th century, the Church of Saint George was the last to be erected. Carved out of red volcanic rock, it is very possibly one of the oldest structures to be preserved in its original state.
Photo credit: oarranzli