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St. Patrick’s Cathedral, the epitome of tranquility in the midst of bustling Manhattan and a gem of Gothic Revival architecture celebrating both the Irish-American community and faith. It’s easily accessible via subway, with a short walk from 5th Avenue-53rd Street or 47th-50th Streets-Rockefeller Center stations.

Constructed from 1858 and finally completed in 1878 (though its spires were not finished until 1888), the cathedral is an architectural marvel. The pointed arches, ribbed vaults, and flying buttresses, characteristic of Gothic design, dominate the breathtaking structure. The cathedral can accommodate around 3,000 people within, spanning over a length of 332 feet and breadth of 174 feet.

What to see:
Upon entering, the massive rose window, designed by Charles Connick, grabs attention. The massive organ, the Pietà (three times larger than Michelangelo’s Pieta), 21 altars, and 19 bells – each named after a different saint – are some other captivating sights.
The Lady Chapel in the back, along with memorial chapels surrounding the sanctuary, dedicated to various saints, cannot be missed. The bronze doors, Archbishop Hughes’ statue, and the treasury museum featuring ecclesiastical garments and religious artifacts are other highlights.

Guided Tours
Guided tours are recommended to truly understand the historical and spiritual significance of the cathedral. These inexpensive, guided tours by professional docents are available on specific days.

Visitors are welcome to join the services and Mass, happening numerous times a day, the schedule for which is available on the cathedral’s official website.

While admission is free, donations are encouraged. Being an active cathedral, visitors are expected to maintain decorum. Dress modestly and talk softly, especially during mass.

St. Patrick’s Cathedral is more than just a place of worship, it’s an art gallery, a piece of history, and a sanctuary of tranquility. Whether for architectural admiration, historical curiosity, or spiritual endeavor, St. Patrick’s Cathedral offers a unique journey for all its visitors.

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