Cappelle Medicee

Price guide: Mid-range

Piazza di Madonna degli Aldobrandini 6, Florence, 50129

Price guide: Mid-range

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By Nicky Swallow, your Florence expert

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#14 of 20
expert-rated things to do in Florence
Expert overall rating:4.7 out of 5
Value for money:
Recommended for:
Culture vultures, Mature travellers, Singles, Design and architecture

Expert review of Cappelle Medicee

The opulent but gloomy mausoleum of the Medici princes.

Apart from Donatello’s two fabulous bronze pulpits, there’s not much to see behind the rough brick façade of the church of San Lorenzo (open Mon-Sat 10am-5pm, Sun 10am-1pm). The real treasures here lie round the corner in the adjacent chapels (entered from outside the east end of the church) that house the megalomaniac Medici family’s funerary monuments to themselves.

The most important members of the family are buried in the Cappella dei Principi (Chapel of the Princes), an opulent octagonal marble monument to death, begun in 1519, that I find one of the most chilling places in Florence.

A small passageway leads from here to the rather less gloomy Sacrestia Nuova (New Sacresty), a striking contrast in its grey pietra serena and white marble, which houses Michelangelo’s celebrated Day and Night and Dawn and Dusk sculptures, made for the tombs of Lorenzo, Duke of Urbino and Giuliano, Duke of Nemours -  two more Medici.

More information on Cappelle Medicee:

Price guide:
Cemetery, Religious site
Piazza di Madonna degli Aldobrandini 6, Florence, 50129
055 2388602
Months open:
All year round
Opening times:
Daily 8.15am-4.50pm; closed the 1st, 3rd and 5th Mon and the 2nd and 4th Sun of the month

Have you been to Cappelle Medicee? Would you recommended it?