Skip the entrance lines and climb to the top of Brunelleschi's Dome with an expert guide! Majestically dominating the city skyline, the terracotta dome of Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore (or Florence Duomo, as it’s more commonly known) is easily Florence's most iconic attraction. After experiencing this masterpiece of architectural genius, take a trip to the Baptistery a most beautiful building dedicated to Saint John that used to baptized Florentine citizens.
Walk with your guide to Piazza del Duomo and after weaving your way through the throngs of street musicians, artists and tourists who congregate in this eclectic square, head straight inside Florence Duomo with your skip-the-line entrance ticket. In peak times, the entrance lines can exceed two hours, so by pre-booking your priority entrance tickets, you'll ensure that you’re spending your time inside this incredible building rather than standing in line!After explaining the history of the Renaissance dome (known as the cupola) your guide will lead the way straight up its impressive 463-step staircase. Taking roughly 45 minutes, the walk up the steps is not for the faint-hearted! Be prepared for a steep and narrow climb – hard work but most definitely worth it. As you ascend through the ‘onion layers’, or two shells, of the dome, pass fascinating frescoes from esteemed Renaissance artists like Vasari and Zuccari. Once at the top, enjoy simply incomparable views over Florence and the Tuscan hills. Walk around the dome’s balcony to take photos and soak up the sights, while your guide regales you with tales of Filippo Brunellechi, the talented Renaissance architect who created the dome itself. After spending roughly 30 minutes at the top, start the careful descent back down the stairs. Relax at the bottom, before heading inside the Baptistery to explore with your guide. Your guided tour ends inside the museum.