St. Mark’s Basilica – Admission fees | St. Mark’s Basilica or Basilica di San Marco is a world-famous cathedral in the Italian lagoon city of Venice. It was the central state sanctuary of the Republic of Venice until the end of the 18th century. St. Mark’s Basilica has been known since 1807 as the cathedral of the Patriarch of Venice.
The basilica has five large portals which can be accessed from St. Mark’s Square, the main square of Venice. Each of these portals is an architectural masterpiece itself and worthwhile visiting.
- 1 St. Mark’s Basilica – A church of superlatives
- 2 St. Mark’s Basilica with Audio-Guide
- 3 St. Mark’s Cathedral queues – Admission without queuing
- 4 Visiting the St. Mark’s Cathedral with combined tickets
- 5 Worthwhile visits
- 6 How much is the entrance fee to St. Mark’s Basilica?
- 7 Overall impression of St. Mark’s Basilica
- 8 Opening hours of St. Mark’s Basilica
- 9 Practical information
St. Mark’s Basilica – A church of superlatives
Entrance to St. Mark’s Basilica is free – which unlike many other churches in Venice is good news. Only for some additional rooms, an entrance fee has to be paid in the Basilica di San Marco. The disadvantage, of course, is the endless crowds of tourists who also cause extremely long queues at the neighbouring Doge’s Palace.
Further on in this text, we will inform interested visitors about the possibilities of how to avoid waiting times.
St. Mark’s Basilica with Audio-Guide
Important information about the interior of St. Mark’s Cathedral and the sights of St. Mark’s Square can be quickly found out by booking the corresponding audio guide in advance.
|Basilica Interior||30 min||5,00 €||Buy online ticket|
|St. Mark's Square|
|60 min||7,00 €||Buy online ticket|
Audio guides are available in English as well as other languages and only provided to people over 12 years of age holding an original document of identification as a deposit. The entrance to St. Mark’s Cathedral is free of charge.
Unfortunately, having an audio guide voucher does not entitle you to priority admission.
St. Mark’s Cathedral queues – Admission without queuing
The only possibility to avoid the long queues at the entrance is to visit St. Mark’s Cathedral together with a guided tour. Guided tours are available to visit the Basilica di San Marco or together with a tour of the Doge’s Palace. In all cases, priority and rapid admission is granted.
The boom of city tourism often underestimates the problem of the waiting times in front of the tourist attractions. Even in popular travel guides, this is not mentioned. This applies, for example, to the Eiffel Tower in Paris, the La Sagrada Familia Cathedral in Barcelona, the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, and of course the St. Mark’s Cathedral and the Doge’s Palace in Venice.
Venice is visited by tourists from all over the world and St. Mark’s Cathedral is one of the main attractions of the lagoon city. Therefore the number of German-speaking tours is limited. That’s why I would absolutely recommend buying tickets online in advance.
Here you will find some interesting offers for guided tours including admission without queuing to the St. Mark’s Basilica.
|St Mark's Basilica||Duration||Price*||Tickets|
|Guided tour +|
|1 hour||32,00 €||Buy online ticket|
Golden Basilica Tour
|1 hour||33,00 €||Buy online ticket|
|Guided tour +|
|3 hours||69,00 €||Buy online ticket|
My tip: If you are staying overnight in Venice, you will have the opportunity to experience the Basilica di San Marco as a quiet place of worship without tourists, enjoying an extraordinary evening tour after closing time.
St. Mark’s Basilica and its mosaics now appear in a fully different light. This unique tour lasts 1.5 hours and is offered only in English. Here are the tickets for St. Mark’s Basilica at night.
Visiting the St. Mark’s Cathedral with combined tickets
Due to its proximity to the Doge’s Palace, which is just a few meters away, a combined visit to these two sensational attractions of Venice is worthwhile. With all the tickets suggested here, you can easily skip the queues.
|St Mark's Basilica +||Duration||Price*||Tickets|
|Doge's Palace||2 hours||68,00 €||Buy online ticket|
|5 hours||119,00 €||Buy online ticket|
|Tour Doge's Palace||2 hours||82,00 €||Buy online ticket|
Important: The above offers which can also be booked in English at the indicated dates and times, include guided tours to St. Mark’s Cathedral and the Doge’s Palace.
The admission to tourist attractions is always without queuing.
Everybody knows quite well where the Basilica di San Marco is, but what exactly can be seen inside the church? One of the cathedral ornaments hides well protected under thick carpets – the precious mosaic floor. One of the most famous works of the Cathedral is the Goldantependium of the high altar, the so-called Pala d’Oro.
The bones of St. Mark are in it. In addition, the four pillars of the canopy were decorated with scenes from Jesus’ life. The treasury consists of conquest features including reliquaries of silver, gold, precious stones and ivory, trophies, glasses, and liturgical equipment. The most valuable piece of the collection is the throne of St. Mark, which once belonged to the emperor.
Climb up to the large gallery of the cathedral. From here you can wonderfully see the bronze horses of the cathedral. It can be reached using the staircase in the atrium. The horses were probably cast in Greece in the 4th century BC and originally decorated the triumphal arch of Emperor Trajan in Rome. After that, they were probably in Constantinople before they were brought to Venice in 1204 and attached to the St. Mark’s gallery where they are still standing to this day!
How much is the entrance fee to St. Mark’s Basilica?
St. Mark’s Basilica can be visited free of charge. However, you have to pay for the adjacent Saint Mark’s Museum, the Golden Altar, and the Treasury for the fantastic view from the free-standing bell tower of St. Mark’s Basilica. To go up to St Mark’s Campanile, there are normal tickets and the possibility to book tickets without queuing.
Here is a list of the current admission prices:
|San Marco Museums||5,00 €|
|Pala d'oro||2,00 €|
|Bell tower||8,00 €|
✓ Tickets can only be acquired on-site. Discounts are available for teenagers and children. The exact opening hours can be found in my separate article St. Mark’s Basilica opening hours here in this blog.
Overall impression of St. Mark’s Basilica
The Basilica di San Marco is certainly the richest and largest church in the city, but is the cathedral also the most beautiful? This judgment can only be made by visitors of the cathedral after they have visited it.
But nevertheless, the Basilica di San Marco is still one of the most beautiful, medieval buildings on earth. The whole magnificence of St. Mark’s Church is already evident on the outer facade when directing the view from the floor into the sky from St. Mark’s Square.
When visiting the enormous interior, many visitors are amazed forever. Gold, silver, marble, mosaics and impressive church paintings decorate the walls of the basilica and make the place something unique. Fantastic!
Opening hours of St. Mark’s Basilica
Here is a short overview of the opening hours of St. Mark’s Basilica. You will find more information in the separate article St. Mark’s Basilica opening hours.
|St Mark's Basilica||Opening times||Last Admission*|
|29 October to 15 April||9:30 a.m - 5:00 p.m||4:45 p.m|
|Sunday & Bank holidays||2:00 p.m - 4:30 p.m||4:15 p.m|
|16 April au 28 October||9:30 a.m - 5:00 p.m||4:45 p.m|
|Sunday & Bank holidays||2:00 p.m - 5:00 p.m||4:45 p.m|
The admission to St. Mark’s Basilica is possible all year round.
Detailed information about the visit to the holy place can be found in the general article of St. Mark’s Basilica.
Not only for the Basilica di San Marco but also for other churches in Venice, it is important to give the necessary respect and to wear appropriate clothing when entering a church.
All the sights, museums and attractions mentioned in this article can be found in St. Mark’s Square – Piazza San Marco, the most important and famous square in Venice.
The square is right by the sea and can be easily accessed on foot from everywhere. The typical water buses stop directly at San Marco.
As an additional transport option to visit the lagoon city, Venice also offers a Hop-On Hop-Off sightseeing boat tour, which of course also stops at St. Mark’s Square. Find out more about this almost leisure way of exploring Venice in the article Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Tour by boat.
*All prices mentioned in this article are non-binding. It always counts the current offer of the corresponding provider. Unfortunately, many tours are not fully adequate for wheelchair users or people with reduced mobility. More information on this can be found in the respective offers.