Florence Cathedral was named in honour of Santa Maria del Fiore and is the iconic landmark of the city of Florence, Italy, and the fourth largest cathedral in the world. Located in the Piazza del Duomo, the cathedral showcases some of the best Renaissance artwork and frescoes ever painted. The Filippo Brunelleschi designed red dome is a sight to behold and can be seen from almost anywhere in the city.
History and art lovers will find Florence Cathedral the highlight of their Tuscan adventure. The exterior is decorated with a white, pink and green marble façade in typical Gothic Florentine style. Inside, explore the complex mosaic flooring, tall columns and decorative ceiling work while strolling through this majestic structure. The "Last Judgement" ceiling fresco by Giorgio Vasari is the high point for many visitors. Climb the stairs to the top of the Duomo to gain up-close views of the frescoes and admire the Florentine cityscape from the exterior platform. Observing Piazza del Duomo from the top of the dome, visitors will notice the Baptistry and the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo. Museo dell’Opera del Duomo is the perfect setting to house the great masterpieces of Donatello, Michelangelo and Ghiberti. There are over 750 works located in 25 rooms, each showcasing art encompassing over 700 years of history. The Florentine Romanesque designed Baptistry is one of the oldest buildings in Florence constructed between 1059 and 1128. Many members of the Medici family and Italian poet Dante were baptised here. It is renowned for its three sets of bronze doors shown with intricate relief sculptures. Opposite Florence Cathedral sits Giotto’s Bell Tower. Energetic visitors can climb to the top of the Campanile and view the glorious Cathedral structure from the opposite side of the square.
Navigating Florence and reaching the Cathedral is easy on foot. The city centre is relatively compact, even the furthest attractions located across the River Arno are accessible in under 30 minutes. Many of the main city centre attractions can be walked to in under 10 minutes. Buses, taxis and trains are available for visitors wishing to venture further afield.
The construction of Florence Cathedral began towards the end of the 13th century by architect Arnolfo di Cambio. The iconic red cupola or dome was added two centuries later by Filippo Brunelleschi. Each of the architects who contributed to the construction has a statue dedicated to them on the exterior of the building. Florence Cathedral, its frescoes, artwork, intricate architectural detailing and regal atmosphere make it one of the most visited landmarks in Italy.