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The Four Major Basilicas

  1. St. Peter’s Basilica
  2. Basilica of Saint Paul Outside the Walls
  3. Archbasilica of St. John Lateran
  4. Basilica of St. Mary Major


The four major Basilicas can be covered in half a day.

1) Begin with St. Peter’s because it usually has the strictest security and longest line before entry.  It officially opens at 7:00 am but pilgrims form lines as early as 6:00 am.

2) Next go to the farthest out which is St. Paul outside the Walls.

3-4) St. Mary Major and John Lateran are both easily interchangeable because they can be accessed by major bus routes and the metro.

This itinerary would take a whole day if one begins with a Wednesday Papal audience at St. Peter’s Basilica which is usually from 9:00-11:00 a.m.

Quoted from: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Major_basilica