About Santiago Metropolitan CathedralAdmire the opulent architecture and decoration of the cathedral, and observe the interesting collection of religious works of art at the Museum of Sacred Art.
The wide and splendid Metropolitan Cathedral of the city of Santiago combines a fusion of architectural styles and exhibits the most elegant examples of religious art. This beautiful building overlooks the western sector of the historic Plaza de Armas.
This is the fifth church that was built in the same space of the main square of Santiago. Previous versions were razed by a fire or destroyed by earthquakes. The structure of today dates from 1748, and its construction was completed by the Italian architect Joaquín Toesca, in 1800. Admire the combination of baroque and neoclassical architectural styles, characterized by very well decorated columns and bell towers.
Enter through the main door, adorned with sculptures carved with Jesuit designs, to see the magnificent decoration of the cathedral, including its gold-plated arches, bright chandeliers and religious murals. Look for the tombs of the historic Chilean figures and the crypt of Diego Portales, an admired politician and businessman.
The people in charge of restoring the marble altar discovered their remains in 2005, 168 years after their murder. Take the opportunity to visit the Museum of Sacred Art of the cathedral. You will find examples of works of art in silver from the 16th century, designed by Bavarian Jesuits, as well as religious images, sculptures and furniture. Be sure to visit the quiet garden of the cathedral, which presents a stark contrast to the busy activity of the Plaza de Armas.
You can easily reach the Cathedral of Santiago by public transport, and you can also take the tourist buses with multiple stops, which run through the city. When you are here, be sure to visit the other points of interest that surround the Plaza de Armas. These include the Central Post Office and the Royal Audience Palace, home of the National Historical Museum.
The Cathedral of Santiago opens every day. Masses are celebrated on Sundays and, for this reason, the visiting hours are shorter than the other days of the week. It is a place of worship today. For this reason, visitors are expected to remain silent and wear respectful clothing. The museum opens its doors to the public only on Mondays. Admission to the cathedral and museum is free.
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Plaza de Armas, SantiagoView Larger Map