Havana Sights


Iglesia y Convento Menor de San Francisco de Asís

Iglesia y Convento Menor de San Francisco de Asís Review

The Latin inscription over the main door of this church and convent dedicated to St. Francis reads: "non est in toto sanctior orbe locus" ("there is no holier place on earth"). As it's now a museum and concert hall, it may no longer be earth's holiest place, but it certainly is one of the loveliest. Built in the 16th century, in 1730 it was restored in a baroque style, resulting in a richly adorned facade with fluted conchlike tympanums over the doors and windows. Just inside the door you'll see tombs beneath a glass floor panel. Churches were used as cemeteries until Bishop Espada founded what is now the Necrópolis Cristóbal Colón in 1868, a detail all Cubans seem to know and cherish. Note also the 19th-century grandfather clock made by Tiffany. The rooms to the right of the nave house archaeological finds and art exhibits. Precisely 117 steps lead to the top of the 141-m (463-ft) tower, the tallest in Havana.

    Contact Information

  • Address: Plaza de San Francisco, La Habana Vieja, Havana
  • Phone: 7/861–3312
  • Cost: Free
  • Hours: Mon., Tues., Thurs., and Fri 9–4:30; Wed. and Sat. 9–6; Sun. 9–2
  • Location: La Habana Vieja

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