Duomo di Messina


Messina's one great sight is the Norman Duomo (or at least a faithful replica of it). One of Sicily's finest cathedrals, its treasures include an impressive carved altar and a grand inlaid organ, the second-largest in Italy. Originally built in the 12th century and accidentally burnt to the ground in 1254, the cathedral was destroyed again in the earthquakes of 1783 and 1908, as well as by an incendiary WWII bomb in 1943.

Very little remains of the original structure, except for the striped marble inlay, the tracery of the facade and the arresting Catalan Gothic portal. Treasures such as the famous Manta d'Oro (Golden Mantle), used to 'cloak' holy pictures during religious celebrations, are kept in the Museo della Cattedrale, accessed from inside the cathedral.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Messina attractions

1. Piazza del Duomo

0.04 MILES

Piazza del Duomo is home to Messina's cathedral and its curious campanile (bell tower). Soaring 60m into the sky, the tower incorporates an astronomical…

2. Fontana di Orione

0.05 MILES

The pale marble Fontana di Orione (1553) depicts a lounging Orion, the mythical founder of Messina. The fountain was constructed by Giovanni Angelo…

4. Fontana del Nettuno

0.47 MILES

Located where Via Garibaldi spills into Piazza dell'Unità d'Italia, the 16th-century Fontana del Nettuno (Neptune's Fountain) is one of Messina's great…

5. Madonna della Lettera

0.51 MILES

Guarding Messina's harbour is the soaring golden statue of the Madonna della Lettera. A good spot to admire it and the harbour is from the seafront…

6. Museo Regionale Interdisciplinare

1.75 MILES

Messina's redeveloped regional museum is one of Sicily's lesser-known highlights, with an extensive collection of fascinating art and archaeology. Its…

7. Museo Nazionale di Reggio Calabria

7.49 MILES

Over several floors in Southern Italy's finest museum you'll descend through millennia of local history, from Neolithic and Palaeolithic times through…

8. Museo Nazionale del Bergamotto

7.65 MILES

Housed in Reggio's former covered market, this museum, which opened in 2018, showcases the interesting 300-year-old history of the region's bergamot…