One of the top few most precious pilgrimage sites I've ever been to is this site: the Basilica del Santo ('il Santo" as the locals call it), the Basilica of St. Anthony of Padua.
When you're in Rome be sure to visit here. It's just four hours from Roma Termini. Take the Eurostar for 54 euro each way. You can stop in Florence and Bologna, too.
This Basilica is one of the world's most important art treasures and one of Christianity's most popular shrines. Great miracles are witnessed here each day.
The outside is Romanesque and the inside is Gothic. It's dedicated to St. Anthony of Padua who was born around 1195 in Lisbon, Portugal, and died in Padua in 1231. The next year, in 1232, they began construction of this church.
The sumptuous interior has tombs of military leaders, scholars, nobles and clergymen. The altar-tomb of St. Anthony was designed in 1594. In 1981, 750 years after he died, the tomb of St. Anthony was opened. When he died he was about forty years old. When they opened his tomb they discovered that his vocal apparatus was found to be intact. This complemented St. Bonaventure's discovery of the Saint's incorrupt tongue during the first recognition of the body in 1263.
It's a great honor to see in this church, in the Treasury Chapel, St. Anthony's incorrupt vocal chords, incorrupt tongue, his jaw bone, some hair, skin and clothing in the reliquaries surrounded by the ex voto objects left by pilgrims as a tribute of favors/miracles granted.
At his tomb, as seen in the photo, be assured that I prayed for you, readers of this blog and all readers of Catholic blogs.