Basilica of San Salvatore (Basilica del SS. Salvatore)
The basilica is part of a former Benedictine monastery and the largest baroque structure in Noto, sitting along the elegant Corso Vittorio Emanuele across from the ornate churches of San Francesco d’Assisi all’Immacolata and Santa Chiara. Explore the city’s sublime historic center with a private or small-group walking tour to discover the history and architecture of its most important palaces and churches, including the Basilica del Santissimo Salvatore. Most walking tours also take in the town’s ornate cathedral and churches of San Domenico and San Carlo al Corso, as well as Palazzo Ducezio in Piazza Municipio.
Things to know before you go
- Walking tours of Noto spend a significant amount of time under the hot Sicilian sun, so wear a hat and sunscreen.
- Attire covering shoulders and knees is required to enter Noto’s historic churches.
- The old town is crisscrossed with steep, narrow lanes and pedestrian staircases, so can be challenging to explore in a wheelchair.
- Noto is one of the most picturesque towns in Sicily, a paradise for photographers.
How to get there
The Basilica del Santissimo Salvatore is located along Corso Vittorio Emanuele, the main street through the center of Noto. The city is 40 minutes from Syracuse and there is a bus service between the two cities, but the best way to visit Noto is with a guided tour that includes transportation.
When to get there
Many of Noto’s most historic churches and palaces close briefly at midday, so the best time to tour the city is in the morning or afternoon. The baroque facades in the historic center are particularly photogenic in the golden hours around sunset.
Highlights of the Basilica del Santissimo Salvatore
As part of a larger monastic complex, the basilica is surrounded by a maze of small courtyards and gardens planted with olive and lemon trees, as well as a striking pyramid-topped bell tower. The interiors are intricately painted in blue, pink, and gold, and the vault is frescoed with a magnificent rendering of the Descent of the Holy Spirit.
- Church of Santa Chiara (Chiesa di Santa Chiara)
- Nicolaci di Villadorata Palace (Palazzo Nicolaci di Villadorata)
- Church of San Domenico (Chiesa di San Domenico)
- Tellaro Roman Villa (Villa Romana del Tellaro)
- Tecnoparco Archimede Museum (Tecnoparco Museo di Archimede)
- Syracuse Cathedral (Duomo di Siracusa)
- Ortygia (Ortigia)
- Ear of Dionysius (Orecchio di Dionisio)
- Syracuse Greek Theater (Teatro Greco)