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Basilica of Mary, Queen of the Universe

Orlando, FL
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Basilica of Mary, Queen of the Universe, Orlando FL

Description

In keeping with the space theme in Florida, Mary is queen of the universe! This modern basilica in Orlando is gorgeous. If you're Catholic, you'll be proud to be when visiting here; if not, you'll wish you were. The rose window is my absolute favorite part of the basilica, and the side chapel with deep blue stained glass dotted with stars is magical as well. The interior of the basilica beckons you to stop and pray a while, taking in the lovely stained glass windows along each wall. There is a statue of Mary and child, and pretty arches all about. Come in between masses so you can stroll around and then catch the music at the beginning of the mass. The organ is bliss, as are the angelic voices of the choir. This is not your neighborhood church music! In the foyer you can light a candle and pray for a need or give thanks for all you have. 

The Mediterranean landcaping with canary palms all around the basilica adds to the beauty, though the gardens on the side are modest, and the mother and child chapel is just an outdoor area. The water lilies and fountain beside the bridge are pretty.
You can definitely find something you like at the gift shop which is packed with interesting things. There is also an attractive museum that describes the history of the church and features a few paintings.
There aren't too many churches in America like those in Europe, so it's fun to visit this one and enjoy the inspiring aesthetics the Catholic Church is so good at creating.
After your visit, have a meal at Bahama Breeze, just down the road. The tropical chicken salad and the West Indies chicken curry are perfection when shared so that you have a little of each. I love the steel drum players and the breezy balcony with its lush landscaping.  



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Photo Gallery

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Water lilies in front of the basilica.
Water lilies in front of the basilica.
Bridge across water to the basilica.
Bridge across water to the basilica.
Fountain and Chapel of Mother and Child.
Fountain and Chapel of Mother and Child.
Wide bridge to the basilica.
Wide bridge to the basilica.
Coat of arms and blue sky.
Coat of arms and blue sky.
Foyer with high, wooden ceiling.
Foyer with high, wooden ceiling.
Gorgeous arches inside the basilica.
Gorgeous arches inside the basilica.
Stained glass: story of Moses.
Stained glass: story of Moses.
A small side chapel with magical deep blue stained glass depicting the universe.
A small side chapel with magical deep blue stained glass depicting the universe.
Painting of Mary.
Painting of Mary.
Golden tile mosaic and wooden sculptures.
Golden tile mosaic and wooden sculptures.
Palms galore!
Palms galore!
Garden with stations of the cross.
Garden with stations of the cross.
Statue of Mary and baby Jesus.
Statue of Mary and baby Jesus.
The garden.
The garden.
The well-stocked gift shop.
The well-stocked gift shop.
Side view of the basilica.
Side view of the basilica.
 

Directions

Basilica of the National Shrine of Mary, Queen of the Universe is located at 8300 Vineland Ave, Orlando FL 32821 or 32820, depending on which GPS you use. Call (407) 239-6600.

The basilica is open to the public M-F 7:30am-5pm, and Sat-Sun 7:30am-7:30pm. 
Masses are Mon-Sat at 8am, M-F at noon, Sat 6pm, Sun 7:30am, 9:30am, 11:30am, 6pm. 
Bahama Breeze Restaurant is located at 8735 Vineland Ave, Orlando FL 32821, call (407) 938-9010.

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Visitor Ratings

Overall Visitor Rating: Unrated.

Last Updated Tue, 04 Jun 2013 20:23:17 GMT