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Bargello Museum

  • Florence, Tuscany, Italy

Last updated: 27 March, 2024

This imposing 13th-century building, erstwhile prison and torture chamber, was opened as a museum in 1865 to celebrate Florence becoming capital of Italy. Today, it is to 14th- to 17th-century sculpture what the Uffizi Gallery is to Renaissance painting; it houses one of the most important collections in the city.

But it doesn’t finish there; you can also expect an eclectic and fascinating haul of the decorative arts from Islamic art to glittering Byzantine and Renaissance jewellery, ivories, textiles, ceramics  and miniature bronzes.

Don’t miss

The ground-floor Michelangelo Room showcases masterpieces by the great artist himself (the ‘Pitti Tondo’ and the drunken-eyed Bacchus sculpture, for example) plus his contemporaries; the star turns are Benvenuto Cellini’s bust of Cosimo I and Giambologna’s Mercury. The first floor Salone Donatello contains several of the artists’ most famous works, his two Davids and his St. George.

Here, too, are the two competing trial reliefs representing the Sacrifice of Isaac that were produced by Lorenzo Ghiberti and Filippo Brunelleschi to win the contest for the second set of doors of the Florentine Baptistry (1401).

Logistics

Price from: £6
Minimum age: 0
Age suitable: 18+
When: All year around

Getting there & doing it

The museum is a 10-minute walk from Santa Maria Novella Station. There are no guided tours in English, but audio guides are available in Italian and English.

There may be queues in high season; you can book tickets online.

When to do it

It’s open all year round. Closed on Tuesdays and on the 2nd and 4th Sunday of each month.

Who to go with: organised tours

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Our selection of the best Viator tours of this attraction or activity

  • Florence

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS • Skip the line with your pre-reserved entrance tickets • See David and St. George by Donatello, the Bacchus, and Tondo Pitti by Michelangelo, and more! • Spend two hours exploring the Bargello Museum with a professional local guide - Tour to one of Florence’s most beautiful and important museums: the Bargello Palace, renowned all around Europe for its incredible works of sculpture. It displays many important sculptures of Michelangelo and Donatello, along with other examples of minor art.

Price €59

Min age 0

Rating 4.8 / 5 [20 ratings]

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  • Florence

Explore one of the most stunning places in Florence - the National Museum of Bargello. The must for Renaissance art lovers it hosts world famous sculptures by Donatello, Michelangelo, Cellini, Della Robbia and many others. Join us for this 1.5-hour tour and be driven away by the intricate history of the palace as a prison and the sight of public executions. Hear the story how Dante Alighieri was once judged within its walls. Admire both the authentic Medieval severity Bargello and its splendid Renaissance sculpture collection. See Brunelleschi and Ghiberti’s bronze panels that gave the start to the Renaissance in 1401. Admire Donatello’s David and learn about its connection to Michelangelo’s iconic masterpiece. Enjoy the stories about Michelangelo’s Bacchus and learn why the commissioner didn’t like it. Explore the vast collection of the Della Robbia’s glazed terracotta works and see the original Marzocco and St. George by Donatello.

Price €99

Min age 0

Rating 4.86 / 5 [15 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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