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St. Mark's Basilica (Basilica di San Marco) Tours

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St. Mark's Basilica (Basilica di San Marco)
St. Mark's Basilica (Basilica di San Marco) is the crown jewel of Venice, one of the most sumptuous cities in the western world. This ornate cathedral blends elements of Gothic, Byzantine, Romanesque, and Renaissance architecture—testimony to the city’s political and economic dominance that spanned centuries. Topped by soaring domes and with an interior of astonishing golden mosaics, the church is so opulent it is known as the Chiesa d’Oro, or the Golden Church. Construction began in 828, when the body of St. Mark was smuggled back to Venice from Alexandria; the church has been rebuilt, expanded, and delicately restored over the centuries. 

The Basics
St. Mark’s Basilica is the most famous monument in Venice and hosts millions of visitors each year, so there are often long lines to enter. To avoid the crowds and wait times, book a skip-the-line tour, or opt for an after-hours tour for private evening access. While the exterior is visited on just about every city sightseeing tour, a guided tour is the best way to experience the cathedral, given the complexity of its art and architecture. A private or small-group evening tour led by an expert tour guide offers a unique and intimate experience, and the basilica is located on St. Mark’s Square, so you can easily combine a basilica tour with a gondola ride and a Doge’s Palace tour.

Things to Know Before You Go
  • Like most churches in Italy, St. Mark’s Basilica requires visitors to wear appropriate clothing—no exposed shoulders, knees, or midriffs.
  • Large bags are not permitted in the basilica. Deposit any luggage at Ateneo di San Basso (in Piazzetta dei Leoncini).

How to Get There
The cathedral is on the eastern end of the Piazza San Marco, adjacent to the Palazzo Ducale (Doge’s Palace) along the Grand Canal. The nearest vaporetto (ferry) stop is San Marco–San Zaccaria.

When to Get There
The basilica is most crowded at midday, so begin or end your Venice tour with a morning or late-afternoon visit. Summer is the most popular time of year to visit, while Venice is relatively quiet from November through February (aside from the Christmas and New Year holidays, and during Carnival).

The Pala d’Oro
St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome is famous for Michelangelo's “Pietà” and Florence’s Duomo is known for Brunelleschi’s dome, but St. Mark’s Basilica’s greatest treasure—the stunning Pala d'Oro—dates back centuries before either of those masterpieces. This glittering gold and enamel altarpiece from AD 976 is considered one of the most important, refined examples of Byzantine enamel in the world.


Address: Piazza San Marco, Venice 30124, Italy
Hours: Mon - Sat 9:45am-5:00pm, Sun and holidays 2pm-4:30pm
Admission: Free
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Historical & Heritage Tours

Doge’s Palace with Hidden Secret Itineraries & Prison Skip the Line Tour

Discover the mysteries of the Doge’s Palace in Venice with this secret itineraries tour. Skip the long line and head straight inside to explore the palace’s opulent public chambers adorned with masterpieces of Renaissance art. Learn how the powerful doges ruled the Venetian Republic with an iron fist, and gain rare entry into shadowy quarters of the Piombi attic prison, where Casanova was once locked up. Walk across the famous Bridge of Sighs and wander the dark dungeons of the New Prison network.
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  • 1 hour 25 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
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US$55.24
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  • 1 hour 25 minutes
  • Free Cancellation

Historical & Heritage Tours

St. Mark's Basilica Exclusive Evening Access with Restricted Access

See Venice at its most atmospheric as you explore St. Mark’s Basilica on an exclusive after-hours tour. Catch glimpses of the Doge's Palace as you meet your guide at Ponte della Paglia, learn about St. Mark the Evangelist as you discover beautifully illuminated mosaics on frescoes, and enjoy access to artifacts and areas off-limits to most visitors. This 1.5-hour tour offers the chance to explore St Mark's Basilica with fewer crowds accompanied by a local guide.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
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US$85.68
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation

Cultural Tours

Skip the Line St Mark's Basilica & Terraces Guided Tour

Explore Venice’s main attraction in just 1 hr on this express, special access tour. You’ll start by bypassing the long general entry line with the help of your expert guide. Inside, you’ll explore gilded mosaics, byzantine architecture, and gain rare access to the 1st floor terraces, with views overlooking the Venetian lagoon.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
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US$32.69
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation

Attraction Tickets

Classic Venice: Gondola, Doge's Palace & St Mark's Basilica

Get a comprehensive overview of Venice on this 2.5-hour tour. Begin with a classic gondola ride down the Grand Canal to admire the city from the water. Then head to St. Mark’s Square and learn about the history of Venice as you tour inside the sumptuous basilica. Then skip the line at Doge’s Palace and explore the complex which is a combination of Byzantine, Gothic, and Renaissance architecture.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
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US$112.73
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation

Skip-the-Line Tours

Guided Tour of St. Mark's Basilica

Discover the golden mosaics, soaring domes and iconic architecture of St. Mark’s Basilica on a 1-hour guided tour of the cathedral. Learn about the history and culture of Venice through the treasures inside the Byzantine landmark, and hear the story of how St. Mark's body came to rest in the city. See how the unique building combines Eastern and Western architecture, and stand before the stunning Pala d’Oro altar, which glimmers with gold, gems and precious stones.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
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US$34.95
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation

Attraction Tickets

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Saint Mark's Basilica 30-min English Introduction & Skip-the-Line Ticket

Learn the essentials about St. Mark's Basilica with a 30-minute introduction by a local guide in a small group and then enjoy a skip-the-line entry to explore the wonders of the world-known cathedral on your own in the afternoon, when it is less crowded.
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  • 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
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US$16.91
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  • 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation

Cultural Tours

A Golden Gem in Venice

Rich with mosaics, Byzantine art, and architectural details, the St Mark’s Basilica (Basilica of San Marco) is a Venice masterpiece. With that much to see it’s easy to miss key points, but a guided visit ensures you cover the highlights—while learning the stories behind the artwork. On this tour, you'll settle into a comfortable seat as the guide points out Biblical scenes, the Pala d’Oro, the Treasury, and more.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
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US$30.44
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation

Cultural Tours

Ancient Stroll and Byzantine Wonders

A must-see site when visiting Venice is the spectacular St. Mark’s Basilica. After a scenic gondola ride along the Grand Canal, you’ll arrive at one of the most beautiful cathedrals in Italy. St. Mark’s Basilica can attract large crowds, but with this tour, you’ll avoid waiting in long visitor lines by having a skip-the-line entrance ticket included. Explore the Cathedral with a guide to teach you about its beautiful gold mosaics, shrines, and Byzantine art.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
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US$63.13
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation

Attraction Tickets

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Tur ghidat Bazilica San Marco in Venetia cu Cristina Caragia in Roman limba

Eu am terminat 2 facultati de arhitectura, a Bucuresti one in Italy.Profesorii mei restaureaza Bazilica San Marco, unde va invit sa facem a tur guidat. O sa va lamuresc 8000 meters of mosaics in Byzantine style.O sa vedem unde se pastreaza moastele Sf. Marc.Daca doriti putem sa vizitam Treasure, yes Muzeul Bisericii cu trofeele de la Constantinopol dupa IV crusade.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
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US$56.37
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US$56.37
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation

Attraction Tickets

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Собор Сан Марко, экскурсия без очередей. Guide Cristina Caragia

Я по образованию архитектор, закончила ВУЗ в Италии. Мои профессора реставрировали этот Собор, с удовольствием делюсь знаниями. Нас ждут 8 000 квадратных метров мозаики византийского стиля.Собору Сан Марко 900 лет истории.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
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US$56.37
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation

Walking Tours

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Venice Self-Guided Walking Tour with Surprise Me Mobile App

Discover the highlights of the historic city center of Venice on this 2-hour self-guided interactive walking tour. Take a walk around the most significant places from the history of Venice, including St. Mark's Square, St. Mark’s Basilica and the Doges’ Palace. Learn the history of one of the world’s most beautiful squares, and experience the charm of Venice up-close. After the walking part you'll have a chance to climb aboard a gondola to experience the magic of Venice on its most traditional mode of transport. We'll share some tips on how to make the most out of your gondola ride.
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  • 2 to 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
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US$22.55
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  • 2 to 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Cultural Tours

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Venice: St Marks Basilica Tour

Go beyond the guidebook and discover the world-famous art and architecture of St Mark’s Basilica on a 2-hour group tour. A skip-the-line ticket, plus access to the treasury, Museum of St Marks and Pala d’Oro, helps you make the most of your limited vacation time in Venice. Provided headsets enable you to listen to your guide's commentary while still enjoying 360 views inside the magnificent basilica.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
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US$36.07
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Literary, Art & Music Tours

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Экскурсия по Венеции с настоящим венецианцем!))

Во время экскурсии, Вы увидите: дом, в котором жил легендарный путешественник Марко Поло, тюрьму из которой сбежал знаменитый донжуан - Казанова, самое любимое кафе Дягилева и Нижинского.Затем, я провожу Вас через мост Риальто и покажу место, где ранее купцы торговали шелками и изумрудами. Также Вашему вниманию будет представлена византийская квадрига, которую во время четвёртого Крестового подхода венецианцы забрали с ипподрома Константинополя. (Какой в нашей истории позор!) И наконец, если интересно, могу показать дворец, где жил капитан Франческо Морозини - тот венецианец, который стрелял из пушек своих кораблей на Партеноне.
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  • 2 to 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
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US$157.82
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US$157.82
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  • 2 to 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Literary, Art & Music Tours

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Opera Dream in Venice

Travelers will discover Venice together with a professional opera singer. The tour starts from San Marco because just before the place where the columns are, Otello once arrived exactly like Shakespeare and Giuseppe Verdi. We start talking about Othello and Verdi's music and shortly afterwards I will perform some tracks from Otello together with my colleagues Soprano and Tenore accompanied by a pianist. Travelers will have this experience before seeing a play at the Teatro La Fenice or at Musica a Palazzo / Palazzo Barbarigo.
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  • 2 to 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
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US$33.82
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US$33.82
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  • 2 to 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Day Trips

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Venice Independent Day Trip from Rome by High-Speed Train

Take this independent day trip to Venice from Rome for a chance to wander the city’s maze of alleyways, visit St Mark’s Square and float down the famous canals by water bus. You’ll travel from Rome to Venice by train, arriving in just 3.5 hours to explore the city however you wish. A skip-the-line ticket to St Mark’s Basilica and a vaporetto pass for the city’s water bus network are both included so you can make the most of your time in Venice before returning to Rome on the train.
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  • 15 hours
  • Free Cancellation
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US$225.46
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US$225.46
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  • 15 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Cultural Tours

Legendary Venice St. Mark's Basilica and Doge's Palace

Delve into Venetian history on this tour that showcases two of the city's most iconic structures and sheds light on the stories behind them both. Enjoy skip-the-line access to both popular attractions. Your first stop is legendary St. Mark's Basilica. Wander around the mosaic-covered interior and Byzantine treasures while a local guide fills you in on how this collection came to be. Then continue to the Doge’s Palace to explore the former political heart of Venice.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From  
US$77.78
From  
US$77.78
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Super Savers

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Skip the Line: Venice in One Day Including Boat Tour

See the best of Venice in a day on a tour that combines a guided walk with a cruise along the bustling Grand Canal. Hear the history of St Mark’s Square and Rialto Bridge from a guide, and visit St Mark’s Basilica with a skip-the-line ticket to beat the long admission lines. Discover the tucked-away treasures of Venice’s backstreets and charming canals, and then finish on a high note: a water taxi cruise on the Grand Canal.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From  
US$75.53
From  
US$75.53
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Cultural Tours

St Mark's Basilica After-Hours Tour with Optional Doge's Palace Visit

See the wonders of Venice's St. Mark's Basilica without the crowds during this after-hours, small-group tour. Learn about the basilica's famed mosaics from your guide and explore the crypt below the church to see where St. Mark's remains are said to lie. Upgrade to see the Doge's Palace after the basilica and wander the former home of the Venetian Republic's government.
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  • 90 to 210 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From  
US$100.33
From  
US$100.33
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  • 90 to 210 minutes
  • Free Cancellation

Super Savers

Grand Day Tour of Venice with Skip-the Line Doge's Palace and St Mark’s Basilica

Explore the best of Venice at a 10% discount with this Super Saver combo of three popular tours. Skip the line at the Doge’s Palace, where you can wander through ornate public rooms and across the notorious Bridge of Sighs. You’ll also head to the front of the long queue at St Mark’s Basilica to tour the dazzling interior of this Byzantine masterpiece and enjoy a guided walking tour of Venice’s hidden gems. Finally, cruise down the Grand Canal aboard a motorboat and soak in the majestic passing scenery.
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  • 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From  
US$128.51
From  
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  • 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Cultural Tours

Skip the Line: Doge's Palace and St Mark's Basilica Tour

Visit two of the most popular attractions in Venice with this skip-the-line guided tour of the Doge's Palace and St Mark's Basilica.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From  
US$77.78
From  
US$77.78
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Walking Tours

Small Group Venice In a Day with Basilica San Marco and Doges Palace plus Gondola Ride

First time in Venice? Maximise your time in the city with a full-day itinerary that ticks off all the most memorable attractions. Stroll across the Rialto Bridge and browse the lively Rialto fish market, then hop aboard a traditional gondola for a romantic cruise along the Grand Canal. Next, access St. Mark’s Basilica and gaze down over the city from the cathedral’s rooftop terrace. Finally, enjoy skip-the-line entrance to the grandiose Doge’s Palace. This small-group tour is limited to 15 people ensuring a personalized experience.
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  • 7 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From  
US$145.42
From  
US$145.42
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  • 7 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation

Multi-day Tours

7-Day Taste of Europe Tour from Paris: Switzerland, Italy and France

Soak in the wonders of France, Switzerland and Italy on a 7-day 'Taste of Europe' tour. Depart Paris for a trip through the spectacular Swiss Alps and visit the lovely lakeside city of Lucerne. Then it's off to Milan, Italy's fashion capital, as well as Verona and Venice where you'll enjoy a Murano glassblowing demo. Continue through Italy with visits to Rome, the Vatican and Florence and return to France for a ride along the French Riviera. Travel by comfortable coach and sleep in 3-star lodgings along the way.
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  • 7 days
From  
US$615.51
From  
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  • 7 days

City Tours

Venice in a Day Combination Tour with Skip the line

If you’re looking to see most of Venice’s well-known sights all in one day, put your trust in this fun combination day tour. This package includes a gondola ride on the Grand Canal, a walking tour of the city, and a boat tour along the city’s most secluded canals. Plus, it gives you a skip-the-line privilege at Doge's Palace (Palazzo Ducale) and at St. Mark's Basilica.
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  • 3 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From  
US$145.42
From  
US$145.42
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  • 3 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation

Day Cruises

Venice Grand Canal Small Group 1-Hour Boat Tour

Experience the beauty of Venice by boat with this Grand Canal Tour of the city built on water. Glide through the placid waters past palaces, churches, gardens and bridges as you make your way along the iconic waterway. Then journey into some of the minor canals on this luxury motorboat. Bring the magic of these liquid streets to life on a tour that’s ideal for lovers, photographers and travelers!
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
From  
US$54.11
From  
US$54.11
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation


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