Brunelleschi Dome Overview

The Brunelleschi Dome will give you access to the Brunelleschi’s Dome which is considered as one of the most stunning works of architecture. The Santa Maria del Fiore is a major attraction in Florence. The history of the construction of the cathedral goes back to the year of 1296 when it was built in a Gothic style, designed by Arnolfo di Cambio. Use your tickets to witness the exterior part of the cathedral is made with polychrome marble panels in various shades of green, white and pink. Visit the dome and learn more about its unique construction. Witness the intricate designs of the structure. Climb up some stairs of the dome to see the Last Judgement fresco by Vasari and admire its beauty. You can use your tickets to climb a total of 436 stairs to reach the top of the dome. Experience the majestic view from the top of the dome and enjoy the structure in all its glory.

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How Brunelleschi Built the World's Biggest Dome

The City Council of Florence, during the end of the 13th century, decided that a large cathedral was to be constructed. The construction of Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore was completed but there was no dome. Nobody knew how to build such a complicated structure. In 1418, a competition was held for the design of the dome. Several architects travelled from all over the world for fame and rewards. Filippo Brunelleschi won the competition to build the dome and he started with the construction in 1420. By 1426, he finished building the dome which was regarded as a masterpiece of its time.

The Contest to Build a Dome Without Buttresses
The Contest to Build a Dome Without Buttresses

The biggest challenge to building the dome was that the building plans did not have pointed arches or buttresses that would support the dome. The dome was supposed to be built around 150 ft across and it would have to start at a height of about 180 ft above the ground. It had to be built on the top of the existing walls of the church. This was not an easy feat to achieve, especially without a support, which was traditionally used while building such a huge structure as the dome.

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Brunelleschi's Innovative Idea
Brunelleschi's Innovative Idea

Brunelleschi suggested that there should be a construction of two domes in order to solve the problem. One dome would be nested inside another, thus forming a layer, which would eliminate the need of the buttresses for support. He constructed vertical arched ribs that connected the inner and the outer dome. Sets of diagonal ribs were employed based on the pointed arch. He also created many layers of support within the dome. His strategy was unparalleled at the time. It was considered as a never seen before, one of its kind structure of that time.

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Why Visit Brunelleschi Dome?

Why Visit Brunelleschi Dome?

Created between the years of 1420 and 1436 by Filippo Brunelleschi, Brunelleschi’s Dome was considered as an architectural wonder of that time. It has a diameter of around 45 m and a total height of more than 116 m. The dome is regarded as the largest masonry vault in the world. The Baptistery, Giotto’s Campanile and the Brunelleschi Dome of the Florence Cathedral complex are a part of UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is a famous tourist attraction of Tuscany.

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Plan Your Visit to Brunelleschi Dome

Essential Information
Tips to Visit
Essential Information
  • Timings: 8.30 am to 7 pm (Monday to Saturday)
  • How to Reach:
  1. By Cab: Brunelleschi’s Dome is located at a distance of around 2 kms from the main city of Florence. You can hire a private cab which will take you about 10 minutes to reach the dome.
  2. By Walk: Brunelleschi’s Dome can be reached by walking. It is a 10 minutes walk from the Santa Maria Novella Train Station, 8 minutes walk away from the Accademia Gallery, Uffizi Gallery and Ponte Vecchio. It is a 25 minutes walk from Piazzale Michelangelo.

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FAQs for Brunelleschi Dome

What is special about Brunelleschi's dome?

    Brunelleschi's dome was the largest dome in the world at the time when it was constructed. It is considered as one of the most important works of architecture and it is a significant structure from the time of the Renaissance. The dome is the largest masonry vault in the world. The most intriguing thing about the dome is it was built without any centre support which was traditionally essential for providing support to a monumental structure such as a dome. For this reason, Brunelleschi's dome is believed to be an architectural wonder.

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