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Chiesa di Santa Caterina

Discover celebrated works of art and admire the baroque architecture in this place of great historic and spiritual significance.

Chiesa di Santa Caterina is an impressive Catholic church rising above the heart of Livorno. This unique house of worship is dedicated to St. Catherine but locals know it as the Church of the Domenicani, in honor of the Dominican friars who founded it. Marvel at the church’s construction and the artworks housed within its walls. 

Construction on the church began in 1720. It opened its doors to the public in 1753, despite the fact that the façade was incomplete. Admire the church’s baroque style that is typical of that era. Tour inside and note the unusual octagonal floor plan with seven large chapels jutting off the side. 

The center dome is one of the highlights of the church. It is completely covered in a fresco by famous Italian artist Cesare Maffei. Rising 207 feet (63 meters) above the ground, the dome stands higher than the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Don’t miss the church’s other focal point, the restored altarpiece. Designed by Giorgio Vasari, it portrays the Coronation of the Virgin. 

The church is also home to several paintings from the Passignani school and a beautiful set of wooden choir stalls that date back to 1604. Admire the ornate 1,200-pipe organ built by Antonio Ducci in 1837.  

Legend has it that this is the church where St. Elizabeth Anna Seton, America’s first saint, converted to Catholicism. Chiesa di Santa Caterina also claims to house the remains of St. Valentine, protected inside a glass casket. However, be aware that many churches across Europe lay claim to housing these relics. 

Chiesa di Santa Caterina is a 10-minute walk from the center of Livorno. The church is open to the public every morning until noon and then from mid-afternoon until evening. During your visit, be mindful that the church still functions as a place of worship. Mass is held in the evenings Monday through Saturday, except on Fridays, Sundays and holidays, when it is held in the morning.


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Via Giotto Ciardi, 28, Livorno, LI
     
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      Hotel Gran Duca $98
      Hotel Gran Duca

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          Grand Hotel Palazzo Livorno - MGallery $136
          Grand Hotel Palazzo Livorno - MGallery

          Grand Hotel Palazzo Livorno - MGallery

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            Hotel Europa

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              Hotel Ariston

              Hotel Ariston

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