Posted by: Debra Kolkka | August 16, 2012

Magnificent San Marco in Venice

The Basilica of San Marco in Venice is the best known example of Byzantine architecture. The church was consecrated in 1094. Within the first half of the 13th century the new facade was constructed, most of the mosaics were completed and the domes were covered with wooden, lead covered domes. The building has been altered inside and outside over the centuries. It is a miracle that it exists at all.

Photographs of the spectacular golden interior are not allowed, so I can only show the gorgeous outside of the building.


A wet evening in Piazza San Marco.



The entrance at high tide.








The beautiful mosaics on the facade.






The amazing roof.


Two of the three flagpoles dating from 1505.



The campanile.



Night time at San Marco.

Look in the “Venice” category for more on this incredible city.


  1. A few years ago, we happened to be in Venice on St Mark’s Day. We attended Mass officiated by Venice’s own Patriarch including Gregorian chanting. An unforgettable experience!

    • Sometimes we are in the right place at just the right time for an amazing experience.

  2. That last shot, with the moon breaking through the clouds is glorious, and if I close my eyes now, I’m transported back to winters nights, crossing the Piazza, seemingly the only person left in Venice, on my way home from visiting friends. Three off the happiest months of my life. Thanks for the me memory prompt!

    • I have had many magical moments in Venice. I was in Piazza San Marco late one afternoon when there was a sudden storm. It only lasted 10 minutes and the sun came out and shone a golden light on the Piazza. I will never forget it.

      • Sounds magical. Well, there’s lots of magic in Venice, isn’t there?

      • Travelling down the Grand Canal on a good day is one of the very best things you can do.

      • Inbound, yes! (Outbound for Ferrovia, or the airport, toooo sad!)

  3. beautiful photographs… I remember my visit… Thank you dear Debra, love, nia

    • I hope you return one day to lovely Venice.

  4. Beautiful pictures Debra. We went there after leaving Lucca 2 years ago when we met you.

    Pam Proctor

    • Venice should be seen as often as possible.

  5. Incredible photos of an incredible city! I just finished a wonderful book set in Venice, The Rossetti Letter by Christi Phillips. A great read!

    • As I said, it is a miracle that Venice exists at all. It is magnificent.

  6. I was just there a couple of months ago – Venice is simply lovely! And your pictures are beautiful 🙂

    • Venice is one of the most amazing sights in the world…..I want to go back soon.

  7. Well done at capturing St. Mark’s beauty. I had to laugh at the pic of the visitors standing on a ramp above the water. Reminded me of my last visit as we were watching the water seeping through as we were waiting off a ramp.

    I have to share this. it was a cruise stop for us. Sailing on a large cruise ship through the main canal is amazing. Even better is that the main docks were full, so we docked by the sidewalk, a 5 min walk from St. Mark’s. 🙂

    • It was actually fun to be there in high water. I’m sure it must drive the residents nuts, but walking around on planks was a novelty for us.

  8. I feel like no other building in Venice reflects the city’s influence from the Eastern Med as beautifully as the Basilica… I’ll always remember the two occasions when I visited, both in the off-season. Seeing the entire ensemble of San Marco for the first time, and being awed by the golden mosaics of the interior, the air permeated with the smell of seawater creeping in.

    • I only go to Venice in the off season. San Marco is breathtaking….particularly the very first time you enter. The Duomo in Siena is my other favourite church in Italy. Mozzafiato is the Italian word for breathtaking. I love it!

  9. Beautiful pictures…shared it on facebook.

    • Thanks for that. Take a look at the post on Torcello for a completely different side of Venice.

      • o.k. I will check that out as I will be there in the fall. Thanks

  10. Debra, once again fabulous photos. My last trip to Venice was the one where I really got to know and love Venice. I will be writing about it in my blog later on.

    • I have been to Venice several times and can’t wait to get back there.

  11. I just have to get to Venice some day. I love the domes of the church and it’s incredible to think they have survived through so many centuries.

  12. If the outside is that beautiful, I can only imagine what it looks like inside! 😮

    • It is incredible…I wish they would allow photos.

  13. Thanks again for the lovely pics and for looking skyward. You help keep the memories alive.


    • Gorgeous Venice….how lucky we are that it exists.

  14. I love the shots of the rooflines Debra, especially that perfect grey sky.

    • The roof of the church is gorgeous isn’t it?

  15. Glorious photos, Deb. I love all the painted works…

    • It is a gorgeous church and the mosaics and paintings are magnificent.

  16. Mozzafiato! I cannot imagine what it must feel like to stand inside it. Can you imagine that kind of construction being undertaken today!

    • No, I cannot. Standing inside this church is magical.

  17. Beautiful shots at all times of the day and night. When I was there we were able to access the catwalk that runs just behind the statues of the horses just above the main entrance. From your photos it looks like that area is undergoing renovations. That was an amazing vantage point to look out over the entire square.
    What I don’t understand is the fascination with the pigeons.

    • I don’t get the pigeons either. I have nothing against pigeons, but I see no reason to encourage people to feed them. I will try to get into the roof next time I go back to Venice.

  18. Beautiful pictures. I love the way you capture the little details!

    • Thank you. The details on this church are stunning.

  19. Everyone loves it, of course. Esp. that there’s an even going on in that groun almost every day.

    • The whole piazza is incredible…I love it.

  20. One of my most favourite destinations in all of Italy and I love the Basilica, magnificent mosaics and a silhouette that is hard to beat as the sun goes down. Wonderful photos, thank you for sharing.

    • Venice is a very special place.

  21. Stunning photos of this magnificent building, Debra. 🙂

    • Thank you, I do love San Marco.

  22. […] Magnificent San Marco in Venice ( Share this:Like this:LikeBe the first to like this. Bookmark the permalink. […]

Leave a Reply


%d bloggers like this: