Initially, I was going to make a blog post about my day trip to Siena from Florence, but I realized that there are so many things I wanted to share about the Cathedral of Siena that I thought it deserved it’s own blog post.

Siena Cathedral Façade

Now, to this day, this has been the most beautiful place I have ever visited. I went there in March, during the evening so the place was not crowded. The quiet atmosphere added significantly to my feelings of awe when stepping into the place.

From what I’ve read, there is usually a line and they recommend to buy the tickets in advance:

The Duomo di Siena was built between the 12th and 13th century on the grounds of an 9th century church and is a prime example of the Gothic style of the Italian medieval era. Plans on expanding the cathedral, thus turning it into the largest cathedral in Italy, were scrapped after the Black Death decimated a big portion of the population in Siena.

The façade is made up mostly of greenish-black and white marble stripes. The entrance façade, designed by Giovanni Pisano, features red marble accents and lace-like carvings which are a sharp contrast to the rest of the building, which is made up of geometric shapes.

The inside of the cathedral follows the same greenish-black and white motif of the outside and is packed full of works of art, from the mosaics on the floor to the stained glass windows and the marble pulpit. There are works from artists such as Donatello, Bernini, and Michelangelo.

Inside the cathedral. In this picture you can appreciate how empty it was during my visit.


The busts of 172 popes and 36 emperors line the molding and spandrels along the cathedral. Golden stars decorate the vaulted ceiling.

A gilded lantern made by Bernini hangs from the top of the dome. Also in the picture: 12 glass-stained windows made by Ulisse de Matteis.

Mosaic floor – The She-Wolf of Siena, 1373

There are many more treasures to be discovered inside this cathedral, including the Piccolomini Library and the Museo dell’Opera. Have you visited this place before? What do you consider to be the most beautiful place you have visited before?

Posted by:Mariela Seijas

One thought on “Spotlight: Cathedral of Siena

  1. Been there. And we were lucky enough to visit when they had the floors completely exposed. It was outstanding.

    I am not sure what the most beautiful place (single building) we have visited is, we have been to so many. Besides this one in Sienna, the Duomo in Florence, St. Marks in Venice, the Norman cathedral in Monreal, Sicily, St. Peters in Rome, The Royal Palace in Bangkok and the Sydney Opera House come to mind.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s