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Slow Travel Google Map: Italy, Venice Churches

Author: WestSussexBird
Notes: Churches of Venice. The churches marked include those recommended as favorites on SlowTalk, those listed by AnnieNC in her Travel Note entitled "Favorite lesser-known churches in Venice", those belonging to the Chorus Association, and other notable churches.

Churches

Angelo Raffaele (SV)

The highlight of this church is a series of most attractive small 18th century paintings by Gianantonio Guardi telling the Story of St Tobias.

Carmini (S Maria del Carmelo) (SV)

The most striking features are the gilded arcades of the nave topped by a series of Baroque paintings illustrating the history of the Carmelite order. There are also noted altarpieces by Cima da Conegliano and Lorenzo Lotto.
The adjacent Scuola is famous for a series of ceiling paintings by G. B. Tiepolo.

Frari (Chorus) (SV)

Recommended by Kim and dean for the Titian altarpieces.
This Franciscan church is one of the largest in Venice. As well as the great Titians it is also notable for a breathtakingly beautiful altarpiece by Giovanni Bellini (another of Venice's great masterpieces), a series of wonderful funeral monuments and a very fine set of choir stalls.

Gesuati (Chorus) (SV)

This Rococco church has a fine position beside the Giudecca Canal, looking across to the Redentore, whose design it reflects. The highlights of the interior are the series of ceiling paintings by G. B. Tiepolo, a joyous altarpiece by Tiepolo and a fine altarpiece by Piazzetta.

Gesuiti (SV)

The interior of this imposing church is noted for its lavish marble interior and a Titian altarpiece.

Madonna dell'Orto (Chorus) (SV)

This lovely Gothic church is situated in a quiet corner of Cannaregio. It was Tintoretto's parish church and there are two huge masterpieces by him in the chancel as well as an appealing Presentation of The Virgin also by him. There is also an outstanding altarpiece by Cima da Conegliano. Sadly, a Madonna and Child by Giovanni Bellini has been stolen, although a copy can be enjoyed today.

Pieta (SV)

(This church seems to be rarely open.)
It is famous for its connection with Vivaldi, who composed some of his finest music for the choir of orphan girls of the hospital of the Pieta. Apparently it contains a dazzling ceiling painting by G. B. Tiepolo.

Redentore (Chorus) (SV)

This church, prominently sited on the south bank of the Giudecca Canal, was built by the Venetian Senate in gratitude for the lifting of a plague. It is the destination for a spectacular procession which crosses the canal by a bridge of boats each July.
It was designed by Palladio, with a masterful facade and a beautiful interior.

S Alvise (Chorus) (SV)

This is one of the remotest churches in Venice, but well worth a visit. The ceiling is engagingly frescoed with inept architectural perspectives. A notable feature is the gallery built for the nuns' choir under which there is a series of naive 15th century biblical scenes (once, remarkably, attributed to Carpaccio.) The finest painting is the Road to Calvary by G. B. Tiepolo.

S Apollonia (SV)

Recommended by AnnieNC in her Travel Note on "favorite lesser-known churches in Venice."
"This is not a church but a former convent. One of my favorite spots in Venice - it is so close to the crowds in Piazza San Marco (right behind the Basilica and Palazzo Ducale) yet every time I go, there's no one else there. It's a beautiful ancient 12th century cloister, very romantic and serene. On the side is the entrance to the Museum of Sacred Art which has a nice collection of paintings and religious objects removed from other churches, including the Basilica. The museum is open from 10:30-12:30 Monday - Saturday, and admission is free."

S Apostoli (SV)

This church, with a prominent campanile, contains a radiant Tiepolo of the Communion of St Lucy. In the same chapel is the tomb of the doge Marco Corner attributed to Tullio Lombardo.

S Cassiano (SV)

Although this church has an uninviting exterior, it contains a stunning painting of The Crucifixion by Tintoretto.

S Francesco della Vigna (SV)

This delightful, welcoming church is full of interest. It is one of AnnieNC's "favorite lesser-known churches in Venice."
"It's a hike to this church but well worth the walk. It's in the far reaches of Castello and has a beautiful Palladio facade. There are some wonderful paintings including a Bellini in a side chapel and a gorgeous Negroponte Madonna surrounded by flowers. You need coins to light up the Bellini. The first time I visited, I didn't have any change and was hanging out in the dark hoping someone else would come and feed the light box. One of the Franciscan Friars walked in, looked at me, said "Bellini" and lit the painting up for me! Just one of the many "kindness of strangers" experiences that make me love Venice so much. There are also some beautiful cloisters and courtyards on the interior of the building complex. Free admission; open from 3-7 in the afternoons."

S Giacomo dell'Orio (Chorus) (SV)

This is one of AnnieNC's "favorite lesser-known churches in Venice."
"I love the way this rambling church looks from the outside; strange ancient rounded sections all merged together. It's in my favorite Campo in Venice. I love to sit outside at the Al Prosecco wine bar and look at this church. It's beautiful and interesting inside as well. It has a gorgeous carved wooden ceiling. Look for the huge green marble column that was part of the loot that the Venetians brought back from Constantinople. There are also fossils embedded in the floors; it's fun to walk around and look for them. Nice paintings and sculpture in this one; Lorenzo Lotto's Virgin and Child with Saints is over the main altar. This church is included on the Chorus Pass tour, which I highly recommend for church and/or art lovers."

S Giobbe (Chorus) (SV)

The most interesting parts are the exquisitely carved doorway and chancel by Pietro Lombardo.

S Giorgio Maggiore (SV)

This church, which features in so many paintings and photographs, was designed by Palladio. The luminous interior contains numerous fine paintings, impressive choir stalls and notable bronze statues and candelabra. There are splendid views from the campanile.

S Giorgio degli Schiavone (SV)

The Scuola is famous for its charming paintings by Carpaccio of the lives of St George and St Jerome.

S Giorgio dei Greci (SV)

This church's precariously tilting campanile features in many views. The interior is richly decorated and hung with paintings in Byzantine style.

S Giovanni Crisostomo (SV)

This very welcoming church (it has always been open when I have passed) in one of the busiest parts of Venice contains two noted altarpieces: by Giovanni Bellini and Sebastiano del Piombo.

S Giovanni Elemosinario (Chorus) (SV)

Noted especially for altarpieces by Titian and Pordenone.

S Giovanni e Paolo (S Zanipolo) (SV)

This was, along with the Frari, one of the two large preaching churches founded by the orders of friars in the 13th/14th centuries. It is an imposing Gothic church and the interior is noted especially for the magnificent tombs of numerous Doges. The most remarkable paintings are the Polyptych of St Vincent Ferrer by Giovanni Bellini and a ceiling painting, the Glory of St Dominic, by Piazzetta. In the same piazza are two other great Renaissance monuments: the equestrian statue of Bartolomeo Colleoni and the facade of the Scuola Grande di S Marco (now a hospital).

S Giovanni in Bragora (SV)

One of AnnieNC's "favorite lesser-known churches in Venice"
"This church is in Castello, not that far away from Piazza San Marco, but you will feel miles away when you get to this quiet campo. This was Vivaldi's childhood church (he was baptized here). The main attraction at this church is the painting over the altar; Cima da Conegliano's Baptism of Christ. It's an incredible painting with amazing colors and a beautiful blue sky filled with angels. I love the Christ in this painting - he looks like an American hippie circa 1972 (think Jesus Christ Superstar!). There's another Cima painting in the Accademia with the exact same Jesus in it. This church is open from 9-11 and 3:30-7:00, Monday - Saturday."

S Marco (SV)

Recommended by Christian. "So much gold! (best seen in early afternoon sun)."

S Maria Formosa (Chorus) (SV)

This church dominates a lively square. It was designed by Mauro Codussi. The most noted pictures are by Bartolomeo Vivarini and Palma il Vecchio (his masterpiece).

S Maria Mater Domini (SV)

One of AnnieNC's "favorite lesser-known churches in Venice."
"This church is in a wonderful neighborhood between San Polo and Santa Croce with ancient Gothic palazzi in the campo surrounding the church. The church itself is very small and homey; there are only about six paintings inside, but each of them is exquisite - wonderful colors! There are many paintings in Venetian churches that are dark and hard to see (too much varnish and age, and in need of restoration or cleaning), but these paintings are vivid and beautiful. One of them is a Tintoretto. It's hard to find this church open (and there are no opening hours posted), but I have found it open several times around 10am Monday-Friday."

S Maria dei Miracoli (Chorus) (SV)

Clad in marble inside and out, this "miraculous" church is a jewel. It was built by Pietro Lombardo with his sons Antonio and Tullio. The latter sculpted the statues of saints and the lacy marble screen surrounding the high altar.

S Maria del Giglio (Chorus) (SV)

(Also known as Santa Maria Zobenigo)
Behind the richly decorated facade is a church full of sculptures and paintings, including a possible Rubens and a Tintoretto.

S Maria e Donato (Murano) (SV)

Full of atmosphere, this old church, founded in the 7th century and rebuilt in the 12th century, contains wonderful mosaics on floor and ceiling.

S Michele In Isola (SV)

This was the first Renaissance church in Venice, designed by Mauro Codussi in 1469. The exterior has been described as "one of the most perfect small buildings in Italy." The white stone facade dominates approaches to the fascinating cemetery island of S Michele.

S Pantalon (or S Pantaleone) (SV)

The stark, unfinished exterior conceals one of Venice's major surprises: a large, melodramatic painted ceiling.

S Pietro Martire (Murano) (SV)

Noted for two fine altarpieces by Giovanni Bellini.

S Pietro di Castello (Chorus) (SV)

This was the cathedral of Venice until 1807 when, after the fall of the republic, the former private chapel of the Doge, San Marco, took its place. It is noted mainly for its tall, leaning campanile (built by Mauro Codussi) and its charming situation in a grassy, tree-fringed square.

S Polo (Chorus) (SV)

Noted mainly for fine paintings by Tintoretto and by G. B. and G. D. Tiepolo and impressive bronze statues by Vittoria.

S Rocco (SV)

The Scuola Grande di San Rocco is full of masterpieces by Tintoretto. Once seen, never forgotten.

S Salvador (or S Salvatore) (SV)

One of AnnieNC's "favorite lesser-known churches in Venice."
"This church is not really obscure and is very easy to find (right next to Campo San Bartholomew on the main path between San Marco and Rialto). It is a large ornate church packed with paintings and sculpture. On my most recent trip, I went in this church every day to see Titian's Annunciation, my favorite Titian in Venice. It's a beautiful and amazing painting, on the edge of being Impressionistic, though it was painted several centuries before Impressionism even existed. Take some 20-euro-cent coins because you have to feed the light box to see this painting; admission to the church itself is free and it always seems to be open."

S Sebastiano (Chorus) (SV)

This was Paolo Veronese's parish church and it is virtually a museum of his lovely paintings. Don't miss his paintings in the sacristy (entered by a door under the organ) if it is open.

S Stae (Chorus) (SV)

Noted mainly for its striking facade facing a vaporetto stop on the Grand Canal and for the early 18th century paintings (Piazzetta, Ricci, G. B. Tiepolo, etc) in the chancel. It is often used for exhibitions and concerts.

S Stefano (Chorus) (SV)

A handsome Gothic church with much of interest inside, most notably the ship's keel roof and some magnificent tombs. The best paintings (including Tintorettos) are in the Sacristy.

S Trovaso (SV)

Also known as Santi Gervasio e Protasio, this church is noted especially for a painting in the International Gothic style by Michele Giambono.
Next to the church are a beautiful, peaceful campo and the picturesque Squero di San Trovaso (gondola boatyard), which is best seen from the other side of the canal.

S Vitale (or S Vidal) (SV)

This church is now used as a concert hall; however, it still contains a fine altarpiece by Carpaccio.

S Zaccaria (SV)

Recommended by WestSussexBird for its Bellini altarpiece and the submarine crypt.
The harmonious Renaissance facade is by Codussi. Inside, it is one of the most atmospheric churches in Venice. The walls are covered with paintings, mainly from the 17th and 18th centuries, but the highlight is Giovanni Bellini's altarpiece of the Madonna and Four Saints. Off the right aisle are atmospheric chapels containing numerous fine paintings (by artists including Antonio Vivarini, Castagno and Tintoretto) and the entrance to the water-filled crypt.

S Zan Degola (SV)

One of AnnieNC's "favorite lesser-known churches in Venice."
"Another small ancient neighborhood church. This one is in Santa Croce north of Campo San Giacomo dell'Orio. There are some remnants of 10th century frescoes on the walls - it is rare for frescoes to have survived this long in Venice because of the damp, so seeing these is very cool. I also found this one open about 10 in the morning on a weekday."

Salute (S Maria della Salute) (SV)

This, the greatest Baroque church in Venice, dominates views from the east end of the Grand Canal and the Basin of St Mark's. It was built as a thanksgiving for the lifting of a plague. The design carefully reflects other prominent churches nearby, including S Marco, S Giorgio Maggiore and the Redentore.
The interior is as magnificent as the exterior; the best pictures are in the Sacristy, including several Titians and a dramatic Tintoretto of the Marriage at Cana.

Torcello Cathedral & S Fosca (SV)

(Recommended by dean.) The ancient cathedral of S Maria Assunta, founded in 639, is profoundly moving in its solemn dignity. The interior is covered with marble and mosaics, including a tessellated floor and one of the finest of all Byzantine mosaics in the apse. Next to the cathedral is the delightful little church of S Fosca.

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