Basilica of Santa Maria Novella, Florence

4.6
#10 of 113 in Historic Sites in Florence
World heritage site · Architectural Building · Hidden Gem · Church
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The first great basilica in Florence, Basilica of Santa Maria Novella is a treasure house of sacred ornaments and artifacts built on top of an earlier place of worship that dates back to the ninth century. The most famous are the Gothic and Renaissance frescoes commissioned by the city's most prominent families. The interior of the basilica is a labyrinth of chapels, all decorated with Renaissance artwork commissioned by families such as the Medicis. One of these family members, Cosimo I, held chariot races in the large square at the front entrance. This tradition lasted until the 19th century. Look at the sacristy for one of Giotto's early works, "John the Evangelist." Plan your visit to Basilica of Santa Maria Novella and a wealth of other attractions, well-known and undiscovered, using our Florence trip itinerary builder tool.
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Basilica of Santa Maria Novella reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
3,721 reviews
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4.7
TripAdvisor
  • This was a gorgeous church and the service was beautiful. I went during Holy week and it didn't use too much incense. 
    This was a gorgeous church and the service was beautiful. I went during Holy week and it didn't use too much incense.  more »
  • A great church, in my eyes much nicer than the Cathedral, full of paintings. I would strongly recommend visiting this church! 
    A great church, in my eyes much nicer than the Cathedral, full of paintings. I would strongly recommend visiting this church!  more »
Google
  • Santa Maria Novella is a church in Florence, Italy, situated opposite, and lending its name to, the city's main railway station. Chronologically, it is the first great basilica in Florence, and is the city's principal Dominican church. The church, the adjoining cloister, and chapter house contain a multiplicity of art treasures and funerary monuments. Especially famous are frescoes by masters of Gothic and early Renaissance. They were financed by the most important Florentine families, who ensured themselves funerary chapels on consecrated ground.
  • One of the musts of Florence. It consists of a church and 2 beautiful gardens with old wall paintings. It is the most accessible place, as it is very close to the train station (also called santa maria novella). There is a ticket kiosk on the entrance and there are not any student discounts.

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