Milan Cathedral Rooftop Tour12 Euro (adult, lift, rooftop only)
I wouldn’t say that I have an intense fear of heights, but I do treat situations, in which I or my belongings could drop down a significant distance with an over-average level of care and respect. Thus, if I had researched properly what you are doing when you visit the rooftop of the Milan Cathedral, I would have likely not done it – but would have missed an amazing experience. Here is my review about walking on (not in!) Milan’s likely most iconic building, which I did on my second day of the Four Countries, Four Trains trip in summer 2020.
Milan Cathedral Rooftop – Location and Admission
Admission to the Milan Cathedral Rooftop Tours is from the rear of the church (the altar side) on the East of the church. You can take choose between two tours: the more budget way is to walk up the dome on stairs, but there are also lift rides. For the lift, there is also a fast track ticket to beat the queue – during my visit in summer 2020, this was not necessary due to the reduced number of visitors / Covid-19, however. Lift and stairs entrances are separate. You should be aware (it was not clear to me at all) that this difference in the level of comfort to go up does not apply to the way down, where all visitors head up the stairs.
The nominal adult admissions for waling on the top of Milan Cathedral are 23 Euro (Lift with Fast Pass), 14 Euro (Lift Access, no fast pass) and 10 Euro (staircase access). You will quite likely not end up selecting between these three tickets, but buy them as part of a package. My ticket, for example, included access to Milan Cathedral itself, the Cathedral Museum (incl. Saint Gotthard church) and lift access and was 20 Euros for adults. In line with the cathedral itself, opening times for the rooftop tour were 9:00 to 19:00 hrs during my visit. Other parts of your Milan Cathedral visit may have different times. It may be sensible to note that during my time of visit, the Cathedral Museum was closed on Wednesdays.
Milan Cathedral Rooftop – The Visit
After exiting from the very small lift (you should likely be there very early or think about the fast pass on normal visit days), you just take a short walk through a narrow isle before you are really on top of the church and have the first awesome views. The visit starts roughly at the Northeast edge of the cathedral, you head to the center roof roughly above the main entrance on the West side of the church. From there you walk back to the Northwest staircase to head down to ground level. To me, the most fascinating thing about that section of the visit, however, was to see which level of detail a building like the Milan Cathedral has – even in areas which have been completely hidden to visitors in the past.
Quite soon, the people who took the staircase route join the trip around Milan Cathedral rooftop – which you majorly recognize as a lot of people are sitting on the stairs of the roof area and need a relax (I felt that already the way down was really exhausting). The decoration of the cathedral feels to be even more splendid in these areas and the views down to Piazza del Duomo are just lovely.
If you walked along this side of the dome, a staircase to the left makes you head on the top of the church, the actual rooftop of Milan Cathedral. The slope of the roof may be a bit scary to walk, but the experience of being up there and enjoying the views of Milan are unforgettable.
Views from the Roof of Milan Cathedral
I just added some views of Milan (especially of Piazza del Duomo) in the order of my visit. Enjoy!
Milan Cathedral – Pictured Story
I already posted a pictured story about visiting Milan Cathedral with pictures from around and inside the famous church:
Milan Cathedral Rooftop – My View
Even though it is more secure as it feels like when you visit (there is typically another level just a few meters below you), visiting the Milan Cathedral Rooftop is indeed scary. I would have likely been quite afraid if the roof would have been moist for any kind of reason. But once you suppressed the thoughts about what could happen if you slip, you have an amazing time up there. The views are awesome and just being on top of such an iconic building was overwhelming to me. Thus, if you are not afraid of height or if it is not super-crowded, you should put the cathedral’s rooftop on your bucket list when visiting the Northern Italy city.
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