San Miniato al Monte

Address: Via Monte alle Croce 1, Florence, 50125, Italy
Telephone: 055 2342731

- Free


This beautiful Romanesque church overlooks Florence and houses a treasure trove of artworks.

This is one of those places that I always feel I should visit more often, and I would recommend visiting at dusk when the light is at its most evocative. Built in 1015, San Miniato sits on a hill above the Arno and has a fabulous view over the city; it’s one of Florence’s most beautiful churches. Some kind of church has stood on this site since the 4th century and legend has it that it was here that San Miniato finally died after having walked up the hill from the river carrying his severed head.

The church has an intricately-patterned green, white and black marble facade and an unusual interior with a raised choir built over the crypt. Look at the designs on the marble floor in the nave: animals and symbols of the zodiac. Artworks include the Chapel of the Cardinal of Portugal, a beautiful tabernacle by Michelozzo in the Capella del Crocifisso along with some fabulous mosaics, and frescoes by Paolo Uccellino in the cloister.

Value for money

Expert tips

Visit at 4.30pm in winter and 5.30pm in summer to hear Gregorian chant sung by the monks.

Recommended for

  • Backpackers / Students
  • Couples
  • Honeymooners
  • Singles
  • Escaping the crowds
  • Great views / scenery
  • Art
  • Design and architecture