When a greenery scene popped out of my feed, it caught my attention and I quickly and excitingly searched where was it. From then on I fell in love with Switzerland. Its innate beauty is just too much not to be in awe. Majestic Alps, quaint and modern architecture, and cosmopolitan cities are just visually appealing. In addition, aside from these features, Switzerland is home to stunning Catholic Churches too. Imagine, attending Mass surrounded by gorgeous nature, it would be extra surreal! In this blog post, we will list the most beautiful Catholic Churches in Switzerland that you should visit.
Visiting Catholic Churches in Switzerland is hitting two birds with one stone. You get to experience the beauty of both nature and Spiritual heritage.
Here are the must-visit Catholic Churches in Switzerland.
Notre Dame Basilica
Located in Geneva, Switzerland, the Basilica of Notre Dame of Geneva, also known as the Basilica of Our Lady of Geneva is a Minor Basilica. It was built between 1852-1857 in a 13th-century Gothic style inspired by Beauvais Cathedral. Aside from its exterior, the Church’s interior is also remarkable. It features stained glass windows, roof paintings, and a sandstone built. It also keeps artworks preceding the protestant reformation like the torch and image of the Virgin Mary. The Basilica is a usual stopover for pilgrims going to the renowned Santiago de Compostela. The Church is near the rail station which makes it accessible. If you happen to pass by Geneva, visit this Basilica, attend the Holy Mass, enjoy the organ playing, and capture the structure!
St. Ulsus Cathedral
Consecrated and completed on 26 September 1773, St. Ulsus Cathedral also known as Solothurn Cathedral is a neoclassical-style Church located in Solothurn, Switzerland under the Diocese of Basel. The late 17th-century cathedral has an imposing exterior composed of a white stone facade, elaborate interiors, presenting paintings, and a variety of other artworks, including frescoes, sculptures, and stained glass windows. Additionally, it is a heritage site of national significance. When you visit the Cathedral, go to the bell tower and enjoy the city view. A must-visit Catholic Cathedral in Switzerland!
If you are fond of monasteries, put the Einsiedeln Abbey on your bucket list. Located in Einsiedeln, Switzerland, this holy site is home to the Shrine of the Black Madonna and is one of the largest pilgrimage sites in Europe. Founded in the 10th century, the Abbey has a long history of monastic life, art, and culture. The abbey is famous for its baroque architecture and holds several important artworks, including the famous Black Madonna statue. If you are planning to visit this site, go on the feast of the Miraculous Consecration and experience the candle illumination of the town and candlelight procession.
Cathedral of Saint Lawrence
A seat of the Bishop of Lugano, Lugano Cathedral also known as the Cathedral of Saint Lawrence is located in the city of Chur, Switzerland. One of the oldest Churches in the country, the structure is a combination of architectural styles like Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque elements. On the outside, you would see an eye-catching Renaissance facade with a large rose window. When you get inside, frescoes and artistic sculptures will welcome you. The Cathedral is near the train station so it is accessible. When you get to visit, try also going to the terrace. Enjoy the view over Monte Brè! Instagram-worthy holy site.
Wassen Church of St. Gallus
One of the most picturesque Catholic Churches you would see in a lifetime! Wassen Church is probably the most popular Church in the Canton of Uri. Located in the town of Wasse in Switzerland, it was erected in 1733 but renovated between 1965 and 1967. This baroque style Church is a symbol of the Swiss Federal Railways. You get to see it thrice from the train because of the Gotthard routing. The scenic view surrounding the Church and the exterior itself equate to what’s inside. The little Church’s well-preserved interior is festive. The Baroque Altar is just magnificent. There are also paintings everywhere. You should not miss this!
Mary of the Snow Chapel
Built in 1967, Maria zum Schnee, Mary of the Snow in English is located in Zermatt, Switzerland. It is standing in the heart of the Swiss Alps. The Chapel is along Lake Schwarzsee and is surrounded by a mountain called Fleschorn which is part of the Pennine Alps making it even more attractive. Since it is away from the normal busy crowd, expect a tranquil Church experience, giving you the right praying and reflection vibes. There are only two ways to visit this Chapel, it could be through cable car o hike. To appreciate the place more, hiking is highly recommended. While on a hike, you could have a picnic while sightseeing the panoramic view of the Alps. A holy place to visit!
Lucerne Jesuit Church
Jesuit Church is the first large baroque-style Church ever built the north of Alps in Switzerland. Located in Lucerne, along the river Reuss, this religious site is covered with memories of the past, good and bad. It was when the protestant reformation divided predominantly Catholic Switzerland that Jesuits (members of the holy order, Society of Jesus, an active participant in the Counter-Reformation ) were called into Lucerne to establish a college. The Associated Church construction began in 1667. Like the exterior, the interior of the Church is also notable. It is bright with intricate details and composed of artworks like roof paintings. Truly a historic Church!
There you have some of the most beautiful Catholic Churches in Switzerland!
These religious sites play important roles in the religious and even cultural life of Switzerland. The Catholic Church in Switzerland continues to serve its communities through various religious services, and social and charitable programs. It even helps in the preservation of the country’s rich cultural heritage. Despite the Catholic Church’s struggle especially during the Reformation, it still stands strong in different parts of Europe specifically, Switzerland. The Catholic faith is still relevant and practiced by millions of Catholic Swiss as shown in Switzerland’s lively Catholic Churches.
For more Catholic Travel, you might want to check this out.