Not only the largest Marian church in Rome but also one of its oldest ones. It was built around the year 440 by Pope Sixtus III. Today it is one of the few Papal major basilicas in Rome.
The interior includes a breathtaking mosaics dating back to the 5th century. You also should not miss the Crypt of the Nativity (which is believed to contain wood from the crib of Jesus Christ).
Saint Jerome, who translated the Bible into Latin, is buried there. There is also a tomb of the Bernini family (the famous artist Gian Lorenzo Bernini is buried here as well).
It is an active church so respectful behaviour is expected. Also, the basilica may be closed to the public on some religious events, so you might want to consult the official website before visiting.
In winter the Basilica closes an hour earlier.
Free admission to the basilica.
Official Website http://www.vatican.va/various/basiliche/sm_maggiore/index_it.html
Phone +39 06 698 86800
Address Piazza di S. Maria Maggiore, 42, 00100 Roma RM, Italy
Coordinates 41°53'51.336" N 12°29'54.434" E