One of the most fascinating features of Gothic churches is their splendid stained glass windows that are so bewitching. Gazing at the colorful glass mosaics, you could virtually transport yourself to a kaleidoscopic world. More importantly, when sunlight shines upon the multicolored window, it casts an enchanting reflection that makes you feel you’re in heaven.
Are you ready to take a trip to a ethereal dimension? We picked out seven different houses of worship with the most splendid stained glass windows in the world. So, get ready for a mesmerizing journey.
This Gothic-style royal chapel in Paris, France was initially built to house precious Christian relics. After the French Revolution, the chapel was restored in the 19th century and has served as a place of worship since then. Aside from precious relics, Sainte-Chapelle is also a proud home to 15 glorious 13th century stained glass windows. Each window serves as a 50-feet-tall canvass depicting major biblical events through its colorful glass.
King’s College Chapel
This notable chapel in the University of Cambridge features some of the finest stained glass window in the world. The most famous of these windows are the monumental windows at the east and west ends of the chapel. But the 12 large windows on each side are equally as mesmerizing as well.
Nasir al-Mulk Mosque
This Islamic place of worship in Shiraz, Iran was built in the 19th century. It is now widely known as the Pink Mosque due to its unique pink-colored tiles. But the unusual tiles is not the only thing that makes it stand out. The façade includes splendid stained glass windows that reflect a stunning display of colorful lights particularly at dawn.
La Sagrada Família
Templo Expiatorio de la Sagrada Familia (Expiatory Church of the Holy Family) is an unfinished church in Barcelona, Spain. It was initially built under architect Francisco de Paula del Villar in 1882. But a year later, Villar resigned and was replaced by Antoni Gaudí. Known for his Gothic-inspired engineering style, Gaudi adorned the church with splendid stained glass windows in order to create expressivity and grandeur. Gaudi died before he could complete the church. And to make it worse, Gaudi’s plans were destroyed by the revolutionaries during the Spanish Civil War. It took 16 years to restore Gaudi’s works which include the fantastical glass windows. Modern architects intend to complete the church based on Gaudi’s original plans. And we should expect this historical church to be completed by 2026.
The Rosary Chapel
Also known as Vence Chapel or Matisse Chapel, this 20th century church in southeastern France was designed by Henry Matisse. The famous architect designed the glass windows based on his series of cut-outs. Vivid colors illuminate the interior when sunlight hits the stained glass windows. The result is indeed an eye-catching work of art that adds an abstract beauty to this small chapel.
This Protestant church in Zurich, Switzerland was built in the 11th century. Starting out as a monastery church, the Grossmunster we’re seeing now is the result of centuries of reconstruction. In 1932, Swiss Artist Augusto Giacometti added stained glass windows to the church which are certainly captivating. And in 2009, German painter Sigmar Polke added another stained glass window.
The Chapel of Thanksgiving
Constructed in 1976, the Chapel of Thanksgiving in Dallas, Texas serves as a spiritual center of Thanksgiving Square. The chapel’s unique spiraling shape is more highlighted by splendid stained glass windows. Projecting a contemporary design, the spiraling windows seem to change color throughout the day. Looking from below, the windows surely appear like a stairway to heaven. The interior of the chapel is indeed a sight to behold.