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3 hours

Florence Tours: City Tours

Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and Museum


Discovering the Heart of Florence

Embark on an architectural and artistic journey with Your Own Italy’s “Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and Museum Tour,” a comprehensive exploration of one of Florence’s most iconic landmarks and its accompanying museum. This exclusive tour delves into the heart of Florentine artistry, history, and innovation, offering an in-depth look at the cathedral known as the Duomo, its magnificent dome engineered by Filippo Brunelleschi, and the treasures housed within the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo.

Discovering the Heart of Florence

Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore: Your tour begins with the majestic Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, an emblem of Florence and a masterpiece of Gothic architecture. Marvel at its stunning façade, adorned with marble panels in shades of pink, white, and green. Inside, the cathedral’s vast interior reveals exquisite artworks, including frescoes and stained glass windows, leading up to the awe-inspiring view of Brunelleschi’s dome above.

Climb Brunelleschi’s Dome: For those willing, climbing the dome offers a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Ascend the 463 steps to the top of Brunelleschi’s architectural marvel for panoramic views of Florence. Along the way, get an up-close look at the dome’s interior frescoes and learn about the innovative techniques Brunelleschi used to construct this enduring symbol of the Renaissance.

Baptistery of San Giovanni: Explore the Baptistery of San Giovanni, one of Florence’s oldest buildings, renowned for its magnificent bronze doors, including the famed Gates of Paradise by Lorenzo Ghiberti. The interior dazzles with intricate mosaics depicting scenes from the Last Judgment and the lives of the saints.

Museo dell’Opera del Duomo: Continue to the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo, where artworks originally created for the cathedral, baptistery, and bell tower are displayed. Highlights include Michelangelo’s Pietà, intended for his own tomb; the original panels of the Gates of Paradise; and Donatello’s Mary Magdalene. The museum not only offers insights into the art and architecture of the Duomo complex but also tells the story of Florence’s artistic evolution.

Your Own Italy: Unveiling Florence’s Artistic Legacy

Your Own Italy’s “Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and Museum Tour” offers an intimate exploration of Florence’s religious and artistic centerpiece. This experience invites you to connect with the city’s historical soul, marvel at human ingenuity, and revel in the beauty of Renaissance art.

Ready to Explore Florence’s Cathedral and Museum?

Are you prepared to delve into the artistic and architectural wonders of the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and its museum? Contact Your Own Italy to customize your tour, and get ready for an enlightening journey through the heart of Florence, where history, art, and innovation converge.

What's Included

Enjoy a fascinating visit to the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and its museum in Florence. The Cathedral, also known as the Duomo, is one of Italy’s most significant Gothic buildings, and its museum, the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo, is equally rich in history and artistry. The museum’s recent renovation has expanded its display space, allowing for an extensive exhibition of its treasures.

Visiting the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore:
– The cathedral is renowned for its magnificent dome, designed by Filippo Brunelleschi, a masterpiece of engineering that dominates the Florence skyline.
– Don’t miss the opportunity to admire the intricate marble façade that combines elements of Gothic and Renaissance styles.

Exploring the Museum:
– The museum’s main room features a re-creation of the original façade of Santa Maria del Fiore by Arnolfo di Cambio, based on Bernardino Poccetti’s drawing. This façade was part of the cathedral from the early 15th century until the late 16th century.
– The museum houses the actual Gates of Paradise by Lorenzo Ghiberti, completed in 1452. These bronze doors are a pinnacle of Renaissance art and were originally part of the Baptistery of San Giovanni. The doors you see in the piazza today are replicas, making the museum’s display even more special.
– The museum also displays doors by Ghiberti and Pisano that were once part of the Baptistery, adding to the rich collection of Florentine art and history.

This visit to the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and its museum promises a deep dive into the heart of Florentine art, architecture, and history, enriching your understanding of this remarkable city.


Tips for Your Tour

Book Tickets in Advance: To avoid long lines, consider booking your tickets online for both the cathedral and the museum.
Wear Comfortable Shoes: Expect to do a lot of walking and standing, especially if you plan to climb the dome.
Photography: Check photography policies inside the cathedral and museum. Flash photography is usually prohibited.
Dress Appropriately: Remember that the cathedral is a place of worship, so dress modestly.


Is there a dress code I should know about?
There is a dress code for churches and basilicas. Shoulders and knees must be covered; shorts, miniskirts, and sleeveless shirts are not permitted. It is also recommended that you not take large bags or backpacks on tours that include churches as you may not be permitted to enter and storage accommodations are not usually available.
What if there is bad weather?
Our tours operate rain or shine!
Is tipping customary in Italy?
Tipping is indeed customary in Italy ! It is considered a kind gesture and proper etiquette to leave “a little something extra” depending on the level of service you receive. For a private guide it is suggested to leave 15 – 25 euros for a typical 3-hour tour.
What happens after I’ve requested a booking through your website?
Your Own Italy will send a confirmation email within 24 hours of your booking. You will then be invited to make your payment using a link that will be provided.
Can wheelchair users go on this walking tour?
Not all walking tours are fully accessible for wheelchair users or those with walking disabilities. However, if anyone in your group requires special accommodation, please let us know when completing the booking and we will work out suitable alternative routes.
Can tours be modified?
Yes, we will do our best to adjust any tour to accommodate special requests.
How far in advance should I book my walking tour?
Tours should be booked 48 hours in advance. While we cannot guarantee availability if booking occurs in less than 48 hours, we will do our best to accommodate your request.
What are Your Own Italy’s payment terms?
Full payment is due when the tour confirmation email is sent, within 24 hours of your booking. You will be provided with a link to our payment page. We accept Visa, MasterCard, and American Express.
What is your cancellation policy?
Tours must be canceled by email 24 hours prior to the start of the tour. If cancellation is made in less than this time, Your Own Italy cannot guarantee a full refund.
How do I amend a reservation?
Any changes to existing reservations must be requested by email. All efforts will be made to accommodate changes, but they cannot be guaranteed.
What should I do if I have a larger group than the size suggested on the website?
Your Own Italy is delighted to accommodate large groups. Please specify the number in your party when booking, and every effort will be made to organize a tour within the time limits provided.

Meeting Point

Please specify when booking whether you would prefer to meet your private guide at your accommodations or at a designated point near the highlights of the tour.

Duration Of Tour

Walking Tours last approximately 3 hours unless otherwise specified.
Tour times are average – some groups prefer a more leisurely pace with fewer sites, with your private guide, this is your option.