Topped by soaring domes and spires, the Basilica of Saint Anthony is the most important church in Padua and is visited by pilgrims from across the globe. With its mix of Romanesque, Byzantine, and Gothic architecture, and rounded domes reminiscent of St. Mark’s Basilica in nearby Venice, this church is one of Padua’s top attractions.
Built during the 13th century, the Basilica of Saint Anthony includes in its design the small pre-existing church where St. Anthony was buried. Inside, notable artworks include 14th-century frescoes by Altichiero da Zevio, an ornate 16th-century candelabrum by Andrea Briosco, and bronze statues by Donatello. Saint Anthony’s body was originally entombed in the Madonna Mora Chapel; today his tongue and jaw bone are displayed in elaborate gold reliquaries, and the rest of his remains are in the Chapel of St. Anthony.
The basilica is included in small-group Padua tours or day trips from nearby Venice, along with other main attractions in Padua like the Scrovegni Chapel—with frescoes by Giotto—and elegant Prato della Valle square.
Things to Know Before You Go
- If you join a walking tour of Padua, opt for comfortable shoes and dress for the weather.
- Photography is not allowed in the church.
- The basilica is fully accessible to wheelchair users.
- Visitors must wear modest attire that covers knees and shoulders.
- Restrooms are located off the Blessed Luca Belludi Cloister.
- A shop located off the Magnolia Cloister sells religious articles and books about the life of Saint Anthony.
How to Get There
The Basilica of Saint Anthony is in Padua’s historic center, an easy walk from the city’s train station and main Prato della Valle square.
When to Get There
The feast day of Saint Anthony is celebrated each year on June 13 with special Masses and services. Pilgrims from across the world gather at Padua’s basilica to honor the beloved Franciscan friar, making the month of June a crowded but special time to visit the basilica.
Highlights of the Basilica of Saint Anthony Complex
In addition to the church, you can tour the adjacent Franciscan Friary and its five cloisters: the Paradise Cloister, the Novitiate Cloister, the Magnolia Cloister, the General Cloister, and the Museum (or Blessed Luke Belludi) Cloister. From the Museum Cloister, you can tour the basilica’s Anthonian Museum and the Museum of Popular Devotion; in the General Cloister, you can see a Multimedia Exhibition on the life of St. Anthony.