Spain is famous for many reasons. Some of these include Flamenco dancing and paella. Along with having a strong Catholic heritage, Spain is a nation with some of the greatest churches in the world. Whether you practice religion or not, your journey to Spain should undoubtedly consist of a few stops at some of the country’s most exquisite and ancient religious buildings. Join us in this article to review some of the most beautiful churches in Spain.
Top 15 Churches in Spain
Spain, a nation with a strong Catholic heritage, is home to many magnificent churches and cathedrals. Fifteen of the most stunning Churches in Spain are listed here.
- La Sagrada Familia Church in Barcelona
- Burgos Cathedral in Burgos
- Basilica of Our Lady of the Pillar in Zaragoza
- Temple Expiatori del Sagrat Cor in Barcelona
- Cathedral of Santa Maria of Palma in Palma
- Santiago de Compostela Cathedral in Santiago
- Mosque-Cathedral of Córdoba
- Seville Cathedral in Seville
- Toledo Cathedral in Toledo
- Santa Maria la Real de Covadonga in Covadonga
- Malaga Cathedral
- Zamora Cathedral
- Leon Cathedral
- Granada Cathedral
- Cadiz Cathedral
La Sagrada Familia Church in Barcelona
La Sagrada Familia Church, the most famous tourist destination in Spain, is the country’s biggest church. It will entice you with its complexity, which is displayed both within and via its expertly constructed exterior. Even though it is still being built, people are drawn to it by its aesthetic and spiritual importance. The building project, which was begun in 1882, will shortly be completed. Yet, there are still open tours and religious ceremonies held here.
Burgos Cathedral in Burgos
Burgos Cathedral was first constructed in the 13th century by King Ferdinand III of Castile. Even though it took three further years to complete, the end result was worthwhile. Even today, a quick glance at this wonder will persuade you that it was expertly designed and constructed using the best materials. Burgos Cathedral, which honors the Virgin Mary and was constructed in the Gothic architectural style, is notable for its octagonal spires and statues of saints and Biblical characters.
Basilica of Our Lady of the Pillar in Zaragoza
One of the most well-known religious structures in Spain is the Basilica of Our Lady of the Pillar, which is situated in Zaragoza. Pope John II regarded the Lady of the Pillar as the Mother of the Spanish Peoples, which explains the significance of the statue. According to legend, St. James constructed the cathedral after seeing a vision of the Virgin Mary while bringing Christianity to Spain. Baroque, neoclassical, and rococo architectural influences may be seen throughout the church. The chapel is particularly well-known for housing murals created by Francisco Goya, one of the most important Spanish artists of all time.
Temple Expiatori del Sagrat Cor in Barcelona
The magnificent Expiatori del Sagrat Cor, known in English as the Church of the Intercession of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ, is built in Barcelona and right on the top of Mount Tibidabo. This temple is one of the new places that was completed in 1950 after a long construction process. The Romanesque-style church is composed of stone, but it also has many ornaments and neo-Gothic features that are impressive.
Cathedral of Santa Maria of Palma in Palma
The magnificent Cathedral of Santa Maria of Palma is located on the island of Mallorca, which is close to the Spanish coast. The cathedral, often called La Seu by locals, began construction in the 13th century but wasn’t completed until 1601. One of the highest buildings in all of Spain, if not all of Europe, the cathedral was constructed on the site of a Moorish mosque. The architecture is a distinctive fusion of Catalan and Gothic, but Gaudi added significant aesthetic updates to the style at the beginning of the 20th century.
Santiago de Compostela Cathedral in Santiago
One of Spain’s greatest architectural wonders is without a doubt the cathedral in Santiago de Compostela. Throughout the middle ages, the activities around the cathedral were extremely important in Europe. According to one tradition, the church was connected to the apostle James, whose remains were transported from Jerusalem by an angelic boat. They were found a few years later by a hermit named Pelagius, and the location became a hallowed site where a tiny church was first erected. The cathedral was constructed in an incredibly elaborate baroque style. The famed pilgrimage road known as the Camino de Santiago or Way of St. James has long drawn travelers from all over the world.
Mosque-Cathedral of Córdoba
In the beautiful Andalusia area, the Mosque-Cathedral of Cordoba is an amazing illustration of how history is intertwined. It is thought that the structure was first a Catholic church before being shared by Christians and Muslims in the early eighth century during the Muslim invasion of Spain. Subsequently, it was converted into a mosque-only area, and one of the finest specimens of Moorish architecture, the magnificent mosque of Cordoba, was constructed there.
Following the Reconquista, the structure became a Roman Catholic Church, and in the 16th century, a Renaissance cathedral nave was built. The Cordoba Cathedral is renowned for its intricate tile work, beautiful arches, and soaring domes, which showcase the Moorish architectural style at its best. The location is still one of the world’s greatest religious and historical treasures.
Seville Cathedral in Seville
The biggest gothic church in the world, Seville Cathedral, also known as the Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Sea, is more beautiful than anybody could have imagined. In the heart of Seville’s enormous metropolis, this early 16th-century architectural gem stands in all its splendor. The architects allegedly believed that when the cathedral was done, people would think they were crazy since it was so magnificent and gorgeous. Christopher Columbus is buried at the cathedral.
Toledo Cathedral in Toledo
The Cathedral of Saint Mary of Toledo, regarded by some as the pinnacle of gothic-style architecture, has a fanciful beauty that is difficult to dispute. Ferdinand III of Castile ordered the construction of the cathedral in the 13th century, and it was finished two centuries later. The light that pours in through the open ceilings of this white limestone architectural wonder gives the entire structure a surreal look. The Cathedral Treasury should be visited since it has a fantastic collection of precious stones.
Santa Maria la Real de Covadonga in Covadonga
The Basilica de Santa Maria la Real de Covadonga is a genuinely extraordinary and majestic building that resembles a palace from a fairy tale rather than an average church. The natural pink color of the limestone used to build the neo-Romanesque cathedral dates to the latter part of the 19th century. Spain’s Cathedral of Santa Maria la Real de Covadonga is a must-see location with tall twin spires and a backdrop of lush hills.
Using Renaissance architectural designs, the Malaga Cathedral was built between the 16th and 18th centuries and serves as the city’s main landmark today. The cathedral, which was formerly enclosed by Malaga’s Moorish walls, is crammed with incredible works of art. Visit the cathedral by the Baroque front to see the vast Gothic altarpiece, numerous statues, and other works of art. This facade is distinct from the remainder of the church. As the congregation spent their finances to help the United States in its battle with the British in the 18th century, it is surprising that the south tower is still incomplete.
Romanesque-style Zamora Cathedral, which dates back to the 12th century, is located on the Duero River’s banks. The building has undergone a number of 900-year expansions, including Gothic apses and a Herrera cloister. The inside of the Zamora Cathedral is almost as intriguing as the outside. Visitors can view a sizable art collection, which includes embossed images that are actually on the building itself.
Leon, a Spanish city in the northwest, is well-known for its Gothic cathedral. The magnificent structure, also known as the House of Light or Pulchra Leonia, was constructed in the 13th century on the site of ancient Roman baths. A large portion of the cathedral is a jewel of gothic design. Over 1,500 romanesque and neoclassical pieces of art are included in its art collection. Its imposing walls, magnificent towers, and enchanting stained-glass windows still bear the remembrance of the past. One of the three most significant rest spots along the Way of St. James is here.
The majestic, spectacular architecture of the Granada Cathedral, often called the Cathedral of the Incarnation, makes it stand out. While it was originally intended to serve religious functions rather than as Charles I of Spain’s royal tomb, its breathtaking beauty is still visible to every visitor. The cathedral has triumphal arches, pillars, and Corinthian columns, among other regal elements. The structure expertly combines many architectural styles. Its round components were influenced by Alberti’s extensive description of the “ideal structure” in his books.
The Cadiz Cathedral’s origins may be traced to the 18th century, when it was constructed as a symbol of the commercial ties between Spain and America. The cathedral of the Americas is the name of the location. The odd interweaving of a large gothic design with rococo and neoclassical forms is one way that the cathedral’s colorful architectural mix is expressed. The building was constructed by Vincenzo Acero, an architect who also worked at the Granada Cathedral. The most distinctive aspect of the cathedral, which magnificently towers over the entire structure, leaves a deep effect on site visitors.