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Florence Baptistery

View the iconic “gates of paradise,” admire the unique architectural structure and study exquisitely detailed mosaics in this incredible 11th-century baptistery.

The Florence Baptistery is a minor basilica dedicated to Florence’s patron saint. Dating back to the 4th or 5th century, it is one of Florence’s oldest buildings. Many notable figures were baptized within its walls. Built in the Florentine Romanesque style, the baptistery flaunts some iconic characteristics. In particular, look for the 15th-century bronze doors crafted by Ghiberti. 

Originally the building was constructed as a cathedral, but in the 12th century it was officially named a baptistery and decorated with the marble and mosaics that you see today. A defining feature of the baptistery is its octagonal shape, eight being a joyful number in Catholicism. From the Piazza del Duomo, gaze up at the magnificent structure clad in geometrically patterned marble.

Admire the three sets of artistic bronze doors that decorate the north, east and south sides of the building. Pay special attention to the eastern doors. They were crafted by Lorenzo Ghiberti when he was only 21 and placed at the important entrance facing the Duomo. Michelangelo once referred to them as the “Gates of Paradise.” The doors you see today are replicas, but you can find the originals in the nearby Museo Dell'Opera Del Duomo.

Enter the baptistery to be stunned by the intricate mosaics. Look up to see a fantastic eight-part dome decorated in mosaics depicting different religious scenes and rich with symbolism. The dome took over 100 years to complete. Turn your attention to the floor and admire the zodiac rose made entirely of marble. The baptistery also contains a few tombs of select individuals, including the famous tomb of Antipope John XXIII.

The baptistery is open every day, but opening hours are different on holy days, including Sundays. Pay one admission price that includes entrance to other attractions in the Duomo, including the Museo Dell'Opera Del Duomo. After touring the baptistery, it is likely you will want to visit the museum as well to see Ghiberti’s original doors. 

A trip to the Florence Baptistery will amaze you with its intricate beauty, no matter your faith or religion. 


Guide to Exploring Florence Baptistery


Top Florence Baptistery Flight + Hotel Deals

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See all 8,153 Properties near Florence Baptistery
Hotel Laurus al Duomo £61
Hotel Laurus al Duomo

Hotel Laurus al Duomo

Via Cerretani, 54r, Florence, FI
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Duomo, this hotel is steps away from Via de' Tornabuoni and Medici Chapels. Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and Piazza del Duomo are also within 5 minutes. Florence Santa Maria Novella Station is 6 minutes by foot and Stazione Porta al Prado, Florence, Italy is 19 minutes.

    Hotel Pitti Palace al Ponte Vecchio £61
    Hotel Pitti Palace al Ponte Vecchio

    Hotel Pitti Palace al Ponte Vecchio

    Borgo S.Jacopo, 3/r, Florence, FI
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Oltrarno, this hotel is steps away from Vasari Corridor and Ponte Vecchio. Pitti Palace and Uffizi Gallery are also within 5 minutes. Florence Santa Maria Novella Station is 16 minutes by foot and Stazione Porta al Prado, Florence, Italy is 23 minutes.

      7Florence B&B £53
      7Florence B&B

      7Florence B&B

      Piazza Della Stazione 3, Florence
         
        0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Santa Maria Novella, this bed & breakfast is within a 5-minute walk of Via Faenza, Basilica of Santa Maria Novella and Medici Chapels. Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and Fortezza da Basso are also within 10 minutes. Florence Santa Maria Novella Station is only a 3-minute walk and Stazione Porta al Prado, Florence, Italy is 14 minutes.

        Hotel Calimala £124
        Hotel Calimala

        Hotel Calimala

        Via Calimala 2, Florence, Città Metropolitana di Firenze
           
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Duomo, this hotel is steps away from Via de' Calzaiuoli, Piazza della Signoria and Palazzo Vecchio. Ponte Vecchio and Uffizi Gallery are also within 5 minutes. Florence Santa Maria Novella Station is 12 minutes by foot and Stazione Porta al Prado, Florence, Italy is 21 minutes.

          Grand Hotel Minerva £163
          Grand Hotel Minerva

          Grand Hotel Minerva

          Piazza Santa Maria Novella 16, Florence, FI
             
            4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Santa Maria Novella, this romantic hotel is steps away from Piazza di Santa Maria Novella and Basilica of Santa Maria Novella. Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and Medici Chapels are also within 10 minutes. Florence Santa Maria Novella Station is 8 minutes by foot and Stazione Porta al Prado, Florence, Italy is 15 minutes.

            Grand Hotel Baglioni £93
            Grand Hotel Baglioni

            Grand Hotel Baglioni

            Piazza Unita Italiana 6, Florence, FI
               
              4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Duomo, this boutique hotel is steps away from Basilica of Santa Maria Novella and Medici Chapels. Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and Piazza del Duomo are also within 10 minutes. Florence Santa Maria Novella Station is only a 4-minute walk and Stazione Porta al Prado, Florence, Italy is 15 minutes.

              Hotel Lungarno - Lungarno Collection £278
              Hotel Lungarno - Lungarno Collection

              Hotel Lungarno - Lungarno Collection

              Borgo San Jacopo 14, Florence, FI
                 
                5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                This family-friendly Florence hotel is located in the historical district, just steps away from Via Maggio and Ponte Vecchio. Pitti Palace and Piazza della Signoria are also within 10 minutes. Florence Santa Maria Novella Station is 15 minutes by foot and Stazione Porta al Prado, Florence, Italy is 22 minutes.

                NH Collection Firenze Porta Rossa £149
                NH Collection Firenze Porta Rossa

                NH Collection Firenze Porta Rossa

                Via Porta Rossa 19, Florence, FI
                   
                  5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Duomo, this luxury hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Accademia delle Arti del Disegno and Ponte Vecchio. Pitti Palace is 0.5 mi (0.7 km) away. Florence Santa Maria Novella Station is 11 minutes by foot and Stazione Porta al Prado, Florence, Italy is 19 minutes.