Piazza del Duomo Florence

Piazza del Duomo has been Florence‘s religious centre for centuries. The Piazza del Duomo is located in the middle of the city and has a large number of important sights. The most important are the Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral, the Baptistery and Giotto’s Campanile.

Piazza del Duomo Florence

History

Piazza del Duomo Florence
The Duomo and the Baptistery

Originally, the Piazza del Duomo was no more than a cemetery that had developed around the Baptistery. Towards the end of the 13th century it began to take on its present form. Florenza, as it was called then, became bigger and more important, and city walls and a number of churches were built.

In the 19th century, the square was further enlarged. To achieve this, the fronts of the Palazzo Arcivescovile and the Canonica del Duomo were demolished.

Part of the square is called Piazza San Giovanni.

Tourist Attractions Piazza del Duomo Florence

Cathedral

Florence Cathedral is particularly famous for its dome designed by Brunelleschi. The official name is Santa Maria del Fiore. After Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome and Saint Paul’s Cathedral in London, it is the third largest church in the world.

San Giovanni Baptistery

The Baptistery of San Giovanni is one of the oldest and most famous buildings in Florence. The doors made by Lorenzo Ghiberti on the north and east sides even made Michelangelo sigh that they were so beautiful that they could have formed the entrance to Paradise, with which he also recorded its nickname “Gates of Paradise”.

Giotto’s BellTower

Florence’s bell tower is right next to the city’s famous Cathedral. Climbing this Campanile, designed by Giotto, you have a beautiful view over the city itself, but above all a very close look over the dome of the Duomo.

Museo dell’Opera del Duomo

The collection of the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo in consists mainly of works of art that have been removed from the Duomo and the Baptistery itself to protect them from the weather. Donatello is richly represented there.

Canonica del Duomo

The Palazzo dei Canonici is the rectory of the Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral. It is located on the south side of Piazza del Duomo. The facade of the palace is characterized by two statues representing the architects of the Duomo.

Loggia del Bigallo

The Loggia del Bigallo is located in Piazza di San Giovanni. In this building, where Florence‘s first cityscape is painted on a wall, you can visit the small Bigallo Museum on the ground floor and an exhibition devoted to Leonardo Da Vinci on the second floor.

Palazzo Arcivescovile

The Palazzo Arcivescovile (“Episcopal Palace”) is located on that part of the Piazza del Duomo called Piazza di San Giovanni. The highlight of the palace is the courtyard, which gives access to the Church of San Salvatore al Vesocvo.

Column of San Zanobi

The Column of San Zenobi was built in 1384. It stands on the spot where, according to legend, an elm blossomed spontaneously in winter in 429 when the mortal remains of the saint were carried along it to the Cathedral of Santa Reparata.

Columns of Porfido (marble)

On both sides of the Porta del Paradiso there are columns made of porfido marble. Originally these were located in the space between the Baptistery and the Cathedral. The columns were donated to the city by Pisa in 1117 as a token of gratitude for the help in the war against the Balearic Islands.

Piazza del Duomo, Florence

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