NEED TO KNOW
LOCATION The Duomo is in central Florence, in the Tuscany region of Italy
DATE OF CONSTRUCTION
1296–1436 (dome 1420–36)
Jan: 40°F (5°C); Apr: 57°F (14°C); Jul: 79°F (26°C); Oct: 63°F (17°C)
The Basilica of Santa Maria del Fiore in Florence, better known as the Duomo, is without doubt an architectural masterpiece of the Italian Renaissance.
The magnificent dome, which dominates the Florentine skyline, was designed by Filippo Brunelleschi. His distinctive octagonal design required some four million bricks. The building of the cathedral began in 1296, under Arnolfo di Cambio, and was continued by a succession of architects after his death. By the time work began on the dome itself, the cathedral had already been under construction for over 100 years, and the lantern that crowns it was not completed until 1461. The interior decoration is 16th-century, depicting scenes from the Last Judgement.
Getting There and Around Travel by air to Florence airport, then by bus or taxi to the city center. The international train station is a 10-minute walk from the Duomo. The city is easily explored on foot.
When to Go Avoid high summer (Jul–Aug), which can be stiflingly hot and humid.