The Basilica of Santa Croce


The Basilica of Santa Croce is one of the symbols of Florence and it is located near the Central National Library in the Ponte alle Grazie area. It is elevated by eight steps and its neoclassical facade was built in the second half of the 1800s. On the left of the frontage, the Statue of Dante Alighieri observes us severely.

Inside the basilica, in a rigorous, large and monumental space, are preserved the tombs and cenotaphs of great men remembered for their studies in the field of arts, theology and sciences. Among the most famous funeral monuments there are those of Michelangelo, Galileo Galilei, Dante, Ugo Foscolo and Gioacchino Rossini, just to mention the most visited.

In the main chapel you can admire the frescoes by Agnolo Gaddi finished in 1380 illustrating The Legend (or History) of the True Cross. In the chapels on the right, those of the Bardi and the Peruzzi, you can admire Giotto's frescoes, made between 1320 and 1325 depicting the Stories of Saint Francis in the Bardi Chapel and the Stories of Saint John the Baptist and Saint John the Evangelist in that of the Peruzzis. Of particular interest are the frescoes detailing the Stories of the Virgin Mary by Taddeo Gaddi in the Baroncelli Chapel.

In the Bardi di Vernio Chapel you can find a work of great realism, the Crucifix by Donatello, which was however not appreciated by Brunelleschi who said it represented a "farmer” on a cross for its exaggerated realism and to which he replied by creating the crucifix in Santa Maria Novella. Inside the Basilica there are other extraordinary works by Donatello such as the Cavalcanti Annunciation and the Saint Louis of Toulouse.

Do not miss the impressive Pazzi Chapel, a masterpiece of Renaissance architecture by Filippo Brunelleschi and the Crucifix by Cimabue, a tragic symbol of the 1966 flood, both visible when continuing the visit through the monumental cloisters.

Where is it?

Piazza di Santa Croce, 16, Firenze 50122 FI

Check now our guided tours