Florence Cathedral is the heart of the city, both geographically and emotionally. It’s the pride of Florence, and one the most impressive churches in the world. If you only have an hour to visit, spend it in Piazza Duomo and the surrounding streets. If you have more time, climb the dome for a breathtaking view of the city.
Florence Cathedral has been a symbol of grandeur since the time of its construction. Easily the largest church of its time, it was intended as a way to publicise the city’s wealth and power, and stand out from the cathedrals of rival cities Siena and Pisa.
This phenomenal church can seem almost too big. It towers above the narrow streets of the city centre, and is clearly visible from every direction, including the surrounding hills.
From up-close the cathedral of Florence is a feast for the eyes. It has three apses, crowned by miniature copies of the major dome and is flanked by the magnificent Gothic bell tower by Giotto. The marble facade is more recent. It was only finished in the 19th century, a stunning example of the Neo-Gothic style.