Churches and other religious/spiritual sites are some of the world’s most important attractions for travelers. The are typically the focal point of a city or village and reflect the culture and values of the region. Churches, especially, are significant architecturally and represent the best efforts of a community to express itself. Lee & I have been to hundreds of churches in our travels. Many of these have become unforgettable memories of a particular place. To actually rank these sites is virtually impossible. How can you choose between amazing sights such as Hagia Sophia, the Pantheon, and Mont-St-Michel?
Therefore, I will present my favorite 150 spiritual places in installments of five (5), listed alphabetically. Many of my choices are World Heritage Sites and deserve to be preserved forever. Many are simply charming or may hold some special historical significance. Peruse the list and compare your list to mine. Obviously I have not been to all the spiritual places on Earth, but most of these would probably make the all-time list of the majority of world travelers.
Installment 2 — #’s 6-10
6. Basilica of the Annunciation, Nazareth, Israel — This glorious church was built to commemorate Mary’s acceptance as Mother of Jesus Christ. Countries from around the world have contributed panels and other artifacts to the church, making it a splendid example of cooperation.
7. Basilica of the Holy Blood, Bruges, Belgium — This beautiful church is located on Burg Square in the lovely medieval city of Bruges. The church claims to possess a sample of the blood of Jesus Christ. Visitors are allowed to pass by and observe the relic.
8. Basilica of the Immaculate Conception, Washington, DC, USA — This beautiful church is located on the campus of American University in Washington, DC.
9. Basilica San Marco (St Mark’s Basilica), Venice, Italy — One of the most unusual and interesting churches in the world combines Byzantine elements with traditional European church design. St Mark’s features beautiful mosaics and an altar of gold and jewels.
10. Basilica San Pietro (St Peter’s Basilica), Vatican City — The largest church in the world has a dome that was designed and built by Michelangelo and is a fitting testimonial to Roman Catholicism, one of the world’s great religions. This is the church where the catholic Pope says Mass. The church was built over the remains of St Peter, the leader of the apostles of Jesus Christ and overlooks a vast square.