Duomo di Milano is one of the most beautiful cathedrals in the world and one of the most popular attractions in Milan, northern Italy.
It is also known as the Milan Cathedral and tickets begin at €3 and go up in price depending on how many areas of the cathedral you wish to explore. Here’s a complete guide with information for visitors about opening hours, entrance fees, history and facts about Duomo di Milano.
Duomo di Milano tickets
|Ticket Type||Full||Children (Aged 6 – 11)|
|Cathedral Single Ticket||€3||€2|
|Culture Pass Fast Track||€25||€13|
|Duomo Pass Lift|
|Rooftops (Fast-track access by lift)||€23||€12|
|Rooftops (Access by lift)||€14||€7|
|Rooftops (Access by stairs)||€10||€5|
|Crypt of St. Charles||Free entry|
The entrance to the Milan Cathedral is organized via a time slot basis and visitors must pick a start time for their visit and arrive at the selected time. Most tickets are valid across three days and grant one time access to a particular area of the historical complex.
The Culture Pass includes access to the Cathedral, the Crypt of St. Charles, the Archeological Area, the Duomo Museum, the Church of San Gottardo, and any exhibitions.
Culture Pass Fast Track
The Culture Pass Fast Track includes fast track access to the Cathedral, the Crypt of St. Charles, the Archeological Area, the Duomo Museum, the Church of San Gottardo, and any exhibitions. Enjoy reduced waiting times!
Milan Cathedral (single ticket):
Everyday: 8am – 7pm (last entrance at 6:10pm)
Duomo di Milano Rooftop:
Everyday: 9am – 7pm (last entrance at 6:10pm)
Crypt of St. Charles:
- Monday – Friday: 11am – 5:30pm
- Saturday: 11am – 5pm
- Sunday: 1:30pm – 3:30pm
(Last entry 15 minutes before closing)
Duomo Museum Opening Times:
Everyday (excluding Wednesday): 10am – 6pm (last entry 5:10pm)
History & more information
The Duomo di Milano, commonly known as Milan Cathedral in English, is one of the most impressive structures in all of Italy. It has taken over 600 years to build the cathedral and still today it undergoes regular renovations and reconstructions to ensure preservation.
The vision for such a colossal cathedral came from Bishop Antonio da Saluzzo and Viscount Gian Galeazzo (the man responsible for the cathedral’s pink-white marble exterior). Construction began in 1386 and at least 78 different architects were brought in on the project along with thousands of artists, sculptures, and construction workers.
By 1418, the cathedral still remained unfinished but pressure from the government and political parties lead to its consecration regardless. However, It wasn’t until the 19th century that the building was declared complete, under Napoleon’s rule.
Today visitors travel from far and wide to admire the beautiful Milan Cathedral that took 600 years to build. From the crypts to the rooftop, get ready to be blown away by intricate detail and architectural genius!
Points of Interest
The Building’s exterior alone is enough to take your breath away! Lined with spires, gargoyles, and turrets, the exterior walls are photographed by thousands of tourists each week.
The holy nail, “Santo Chiodo”, is said to have come from the crucifixion of Jesus and is found high in a vault above the choir. Look for the red light on the wall, it indicated the location of the nail.
Make sure you pay to visit the rooftop on your visit to the Cathedral as it offers spectacular panoramic views over the city. It’s also a great place to admire some of the building’s exterior work including the impressive turrets that line the Cathedral’s walls.
The Milan Cathedral is well-known for housing well over 3,000 statues both inside and out of the building and you’d be hard-pressed to miss them!
The Cathedral’s crypt is home to the grave of Gian Giacomo de’ Medici (brother of Pope Pius IV) and the Italian Cardinal Carlo Borromeo.
To learn more about the construction of the cathedral head to the museum. Inside you’ll find a number of exhibition rooms displaying tapestries, statues, and other precious objects related to the building.
How to get to Duomo di Milano
The Cathedral sits in the center of Piazza del Duomo in the heart of Milan and is easily accessible on foot or by public transport. The nearest Metro stop is ‘Duomo’ which is serviced by lines 1 and 2.
And the nearest tram stop is ‘Torino’ which is serviced by lines 2, 3, and 14. Alternatively, tram stop ‘Dogana’ is a similar distance on foot and is serviced by line 24.
Best time to visit
The best time to visit Duomo di Milano is early morning as soon as the doors open. In the spring and summer, when Milan is at its busiest, you’ll likely still be exploring the cathedral with crowds of people, but fewer than there is in the afternoon. Try to avoid public holidays, school holidays, and weekends for a more relaxed viewing experience.
Facts about Duomo di Milano
- The Duomo is the largest Gothic Church in the world and the largest church in Italy – it takes up an entire city block!
- The church has more statues than any other building in the world. The entirety of the façade is covered with carved architectural elements portraying flowers, fruits and fantastical beasts, including delightfully grotesque gargoyles. The exact number of statues is in dispute, but it’s thought there’s around 3,300 in total.
- The construction of the church lasted six centuries!
- At least 78 different architects from around Europe were invited to work on the structure.
- It was due to Napoleon Bonaparte’s insistence that the Duomo’s façade was finally completed in 1811, just in time to celebrate the birth of Napoleon’s son in style.
- The cathedral’s edifice is made of Candoglia marble from Lake Maggiore to the north of Milan. To transport it from the quarries, canals were constructed, some of which remain to this day.
- A five-year project to clean the building was started in 2002 and routine restorations and cleaning are continually taking place to keep maintain its gleaming stone.
- Access to the cathedral is made through five large bronze doors from Piazza Duomo. The central one is the oldest and was created in the nineteenth century by Ludovico Pogliaghi.
- The cathedral has a cruciform plan in the form of a Latin cross that covers nearly 12,000 square meters. 40,000 people can fit comfortably within.
- A small red light bulb in the dome above the apse marks the spot where one of the nails reputedly from the Crucifixion of Christ has been placed. The Holy Nail is retrieved and exposed to the public every year, during a celebration known as the Rite of the Nivola.
FAQ’s (Things to know before you go)
Should I buy Duomo tickets in advance in Milan?
I recommend everyone to purchase tickets to the cathedral in advance to ensure availability, and to avoid long queues to enter. It’s one of the most visited attractions in Milan.
Can I bring my luggage to the Milan cathedral?
Visitors are recommended to avoid bringing luggage bigger than handbag/backpack size to the cathedral. There are no luggage storage facilities onsite, so it’s recommended you head to your hotel first to drop off your back or make use of one of the luggage storage companies in the nearby area.
Will my bags be checked on arrival?
As a security measure, all bags must be opened and pockets emptied for a routine search similar to those done at an airport.
Why is the Milan cathedral famous?
Duomo di Milano is listed as the second-largest cathedral in the world. It is well-renowned for its gothic architecture and historic importance as the seat of the Archbishop of Milan.
How big is the Duomo in Milan?
The Duomo in Milan has a length of 157 meters (515 ft) and a width of 92 meters (302 ft). In total, the Milan Cathedral can house up to 40,000 people at the same time. The height of the dome is 65.6 meters (215 ft).
Will I have to queue to get inside?
Yes, most days there is a queue to get inside the ticket office but if you time your visit well (outside of school holidays, weekends, and peak times) the waiting won’t be too long. Alternatively, consider buying a “skip the line” fast track ticket to enjoy speedy entry.
Is the Milan cathedral wheelchair accessible?
Yes, most of the cathedral can be accessed by people with disabilities and there are lift passes available for those who require this mode of transport. The Baptistery of St. Stephen and the Crypt of Saint Charles isn’t wheelchair accessible.
How many steps are in the Duomo in Milan?
There are a total of 919 steps in Duomo di Milano to reach the top, after climbing the spiral staircase in stone.
Are audio guides available?
Yes, audio guides are available in multiple different languages. Visitors are also encouraged to download the Duomo Milano app for free to help aid their visit.
Do you have more questions before visiting Duomo di Milano? Leave a comment below!