Discover Piazza Duomo with the monumental Cathedral and the former hospital of Santa Maria della Scala in the heart of the city. A journey of discovery exploring the treasures of the Cathedral and its construction.
Siena Cathedral as an expression of the entire community's spiritual dimension is remarkable not only for the dazzling beauty of its exterior but also, indeed primarily, for the grandiose decoration of its interior, in which all the branches of figurative art are expressed at the highest level. Nicola and Giovanni Pisano, Duccio di Buoninsegna, Donatello, Michelangelo, Pinturicchio, Domenico Beccafumi and Bernini are only a few of the artists who have filled this venerable place of worship with their masterpieces. Entering here means lifting up one's heart, opening one's mind to art and discovering one of the city's best loved and most valued treasures.
"The most beautiful..., largest and most magnificent...ever made" is how Giorgio Vasari described the floor of Siena Cathedral, the product of a programme implemented between the 14th and the 19th centuries.
The Sienese, a singular people, have displayed their own soul in stone in this place [the unfinished façade of the new cathedral]. (L. Douglas)
The most breathtaking observation point in Siena. A stunning panoramic view reached after climbing up through one of the most important monuments in the city's history, a monument which Enzo Carli described as "the masterpiece of Sienese Gothic architecture".
The Museo dell'Opera, built into the very fabric of the Old and New Cathedrals, is one of the oldest private museums in Italy. Founded in 1869, it hosts works of art from the Cathedral and from other churches in the diocese, illustrating the history and artistic culture of the city of Siena. The museum also houses two milestones in the history of Italian art: the statues that Giovanni Pisano carved for the façade of the Cathedral and the Maestà that Duccio di Buoninsegna painted for the high altar.
Descend into a world of colour taking you into the very bowels of the Cathedral. This area, known as the "Crypt" is one of the most important archaeological discoveries of the past twenty years and hosts a dazzlingly beautiful cycle of frescoes painted by several different Sienese artists in the second half of the 13th century.
oratory of st. bernardino and diocesan museum of religious art
This magical and extremely atmospheric museum, providing an exhaustive overview of Sienese painting from the 13th century on, unfolds around the central core of the upper oratory's splendid chapel, where such early 16th century painters as Domenico Beccafumi, Giovanni Antonio Bazzi known as Sodoma and Girolamo Pacchia adorned the walls with large frescoes depicting Stories from the Life of the Virgin. The museum also houses the tender and extremely engaging Madonna of Milk by Ambrogio Lorenzetti, an absolute masterpiece of 14th century painting.