Milan Cathedral (Duomo di Milano) is a massive, Gothic-style cathedral in the heart of Milan. Although construction of the duomo began in 1386, the church wasn’t consecrated until 1418. The final details of the cathedral weren’t completed until the 19th century, with the final gate being inaugurated in January 1965. Milan’s Duomo is the largest church in Italy (St. Peter’s Basilica is in the State of Vatican City) and the fourth largest church in the world. Napoleon Bonaparte was crowned King of Italy here in 1805, and it survived the bombing of Milan during World War II.
Visitors will notice that the style is distinctly gothic, unlike many of the Renaissance style churches that Italy boasts. The structure is covered in spiky white marble spires, 135 gargoyles, and nearly 700 statues. The highest spire of the cathedral is the Madonnina, a gold statue of the Virgin Mary. The cathedral is home to The Holy Nail (purportedly a nail from the True Cross in the Christian faith), which is presented to the public annually during the Rito della Nivola (Rite of the Nivola), a Catholic tradition dating back to the 16th century.
The cathedral roof is constructed from Candoglia marble from nearby Lake Maggiore which gives it the pinkish-white hue. From the sprawling terrace, visitors enjoy beautiful panoramic views of Milan as well as some of the cathedral’s 3,400 statues up close. Instead of spending hours waiting in line, our Skip the Line Duomo and Underground Tour enjoys priority skip the line access into the cathedral, its underground section, and ends with an elevator ride to the rooftop terrace where you can witness the stunning views for yourself. If you’re short on time or just want to enjoy the elaborate cathedral exterior, we cruise to the Duomo Square on our Milan Segway Tour and Two Hour Segway Tour where your expert, English-speaking tour guide will tell you fun facts and stories not found in the ordinary guide book. The Milan Cathedral has been the heart and symbol of Milan for hundreds of years, and can’t be missed during your time in Milan.
Cathedral open 8:00am - 7:00pm, daily.
Public Entrance Fees
Good to Know
As an active place of worship, guests are required to have their shoulders and knees covered inside the Milan Cathedral. It is sufficient to bring along a light scarf or cardigan and put them on prior to entering the holy areas. All guests are also required to remove hats and sunglasses when inside the Duomo.