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Santa Maria del Carmelo – Simple on the outside, simply stunning on the inside

Interior of Santa Maria del Carmelo Ceiling fresco of Santa Maria del Carmelo Santa Maria del Carmelo

The church of Santa Maria del Carmelo (Carmini) was founded by Carmelite monks in the penultimate decade of the 13th century: work began in 1286 and, given the size of the building, continued for a long time until 1348, the year of its official consecration.

The Chiesa di Santa Maria del Carmelo is rich in art treasures

Admire works by Cima da Conegliano, Lorenzo Lotto and Jacopo Tintoretto

The façade, rebuilt in the late 15th century, with curved side gables and a semicircular tympanum, follows the Renaissance language introduced by Codussi in Venice, which can be seen in the façade of the church of San Zaccaria and the bell tower of Santa Maria Formosa.

Beginning in 1507, major renovation works and equally major decorative interventions began, which, continuing in later epochs, ended up radically changing the original appearance of the church. The interventions mainly involved the construction of a new presbytery and the extension in height of the entire nave and partially the side aisles.

Inside the church

The interior has a three-nave basilica plan with Istrian stone columns and inverted basket capitals belonging to the early Gothic style.

The apsidal chapels were built on the new space of the transept extended from the presbytery into the nave, all structures of Renaissance lines with pillars in several orders from which the large round arches of the transept branch off. These building operations were attributed, however without documentation, to Giovanni di Antonio Buora, an architect and sculptor originally from Lugano, a follower of Pietro Lombardo and active in Venice until his death in 1513. 

Between the windows and the arcades, you will find a 24-part cycle of paintings with saints of the Carmelite Order on both sides. The jewel of the church, however, is the painting The Adoration of the Infant Jesus by Cima da Conegliano. But the sculptures in this church are also true masterpieces of the sculptor’s art.



  • The altars were rebuilt in the 17th century and adorned with valuable altarpieces such as The Adoration of the Magi by Cima da Conegliano (1509), St Nicholas with Angels by Lorenzo Lotto (1529), The Presentation of Jesus in the Temple by Jacopo Tintoretto (1543). 
  • Admire the ceiling fresco with gold background 


Opening hours

Monday – Saturday | 10.30 a.m. – 5 p.m.
(ticket offices, bookshop, last admission ten minutes before closing time) 



You can obtain the Chorus Pass at the ticket office of the Chiesa di Santo Stefano, the Chiesa di San Giacomo dall’Orio or the Chiesa di San Sebastiano on presentation of the Venice City Pass. The Chorus Pass is valid for the churches listed on the ticket. Keep the Chorus Pass to visit the other churches. 


Important information

  • Please dress appropriately for your visit to the Chiesa di San Giovanni Battista in Bragora and cover your shoulders and knees. Sleeveless outerwear, shorts, miniskirts and hats are not permitted.



How to get there

The nearest boat landing stage is
San Basilio, lines: 2,6,N 

Alternatively, you can walk from the central bus station in ten to fifteen minutes 



Sestiere Dorsoduro, 2612, 30123 Venezia VE

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The Chorus Pass for the churches of Venice is included in your >> Venice City Pass.

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