The Best of Milan – Sunset on the rooftop of the Duomo
About the Duomo di Milano
The Gothic Cathedral of Milan, famously known as the Duomo, is an impressive glorious marble structure with slender pinnacles rising everywhere. This behemoth cathedral tells the story of faith , art and architecture spanning over six hundred years. Standing gallantly in the centre of Piazza del Duomo is the Milan Cathedral. It has been said that the exterior of the Duomo is decorated with 2,245 statues, 135 gargoyles and over 700 statues. Above all, it is the golden Madonnina, that stands high above over Milan which gives this iconic Cathedral its glorious and majestic beauty.
To take a close look at the compelling external architecture of the Duomo requires a walk on the rooftop. Access to the rooftop is via a flight of stairs or by an elevator. To make your visit that much more special, visit the rooftop in the evening and experience a sunset on the rooftop of the Duomo.
Recommended read: Milan Cathedral – How to make the best of your visit.
1 | Best of Milan – The rooftop of the Duomo – a sight to behold
The one experience that I would highly recommend when you visit Milan is to catch the sunset from the terraces of the Duomo. I was totally lost in the moment and overcome with a sense of calmness when I exited the lift and saw the views over Milan.
The views from the top are amazing and you can see the mountains in the distance on a clear day. Below, is the Piazza del Duomo and literally the whole of Milan under your feet! This magnificent Duomo is a true wonder! We spent over an hour at the rooftop, just taking in the sights, far, near and below.
Recommended read: Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II
Play the video below to immerse in the atmosphere of the best of Milan – sunset on the rooftop of the Duomo
2 | Walking through a forest of spires and statues on the rooftop of the Duomo
We walked through a forest of one-hundred and thirty-five towers and spires, and over two-thousand decorative marble statues. The close-up of the spires was an impressive sight and will have you in awe in more times than once.
We explored the rooftop via interconnecting stairways. walked the perimeter of the Cathedral, all four sides and further up to the highest possible point to have the closest view possible of Modonnina, the symbol of Milan. We stopped every few minutes to take in the view, and along with other tourists were in total awe, total strangers talking to each other and sharing this one love of wonderment. There were moments of silence too, for such moments need not be outwardly expressed. Each moment was remarkable as we witnessed the changing colours of the clear blue skies to yellow, gold and orange hues.
3 | The changing hues of the sunset over Milan from the Duomo
No words needed here…have a look at the video below – the changing colours over the City of Milan.
4 | The velvety night sky
The rich hues of the sunset gave way to the velvety dark of night as the sun sank lower draining the light of day away. You can see the star-like lights in the distance and the bright-lights from the square. The evening landscape that surrounds the Duomo was unique as it represents the old and new combined, somehow perfectly complementing each other and not being out of place. The evening drew a slight breeze, giving a chill in the autumn evening which added to the magical moments of this sunset over Milan from the rooftop of the Duomo.
5 | Madonnina at the Duomo – Symbol of Milan
To get the closest view possible of the Madonnina, walk all around the perimeter of the roof and around a corner, there is a stairway that leads further up to the highest possible point. The stairs leads you to the highest rooftop and it is from here, where you will have the closest view possible of Modonnina – the picture below.
Georgina suggests: The rooftop is at a gradient and can be slippery. Please use appropriate footwear and take care when you climb up.
6 | Reflection of my experience on the rooftop of the Duomo
The rooftop offers spectacular views over Milan. You will be totally amaze walking through what seems like never ending paths through a forest of spires and statues of all and every kind that makes the Duomo unique. If there be one thing you do in Milan, and you want it to be the Best in Milan, make it the Sunset on the rooftop of the Duomo.
I know what is “Best” to individuals may differ and you may not be a fan of cathedrals or rooftops, but for those who are on the same page as I, give the rooftop of the Duomo a go at sunset and return here to share your experiences or tag me on Instagram when you post your pictures. I look forward to connecting with each of you.
I was fortunate to experience this on a sunny day because the day before and day after rained cats and dogs! Plan well and choose your day. Purchase your tickets before visiting.
7 | Travel tips and Practical information when visiting the Duomo di Milano
7.1 | How to get to the rooftops of the Duomo
Access to the rooftop is around the back of the Duomo. You need a ticket.
There are two ways to get to the rooftop – by staircase or an elevator. If you do the Fast-track or the Skip-the-line option, you can take the lift. I highly recommend that you opt for this option because it saves you a lot of time. Moreover, this ticket is valid for 3-days and an audio-guide is included.
There are about 20 options or ways in which you could experience the Duomo di Milano. Have a look at the various choices you have and reserve well ahead of time so you do miss out on this amazing experience > here
You will find that there is a queue, regardless of whether you are on the Skip-the-line track or the not. When I visited there was only one line and I purchased the Fast-track / Skip-the-Line ticket. It wasn’t a very long queue.
Though I did not expect to wait the fifteen-minutes or so as I had literally walked into the Duomo without a queue and I expected the same with the rooftop access. It was understandable under the circumstances as there is only one operable lift, that takes about six people at a time.
Georgina suggests: The price difference between taking the stairs and the lift is not much. You can check the difference here. If you are into fitness, then take the stairs. However, if you are limited in time, take the lift and enjoy the views.
Give yourself at least 1 to 1.5 hours to really enjoy the rooftop experience
7.2 | Opening hours
The Cathedral and the Rooftop is open Everyday.
Cathedral – 8 am to 7 pm | Rooftop – 9 am to 7pm | Last entry is at 6 pm
7.3 | Getting to Milan Cathedral/Duomo di Milano
From Milan Central Station:
To get to the Cathedral, you will need the Piazza del Duomo. The distance between Milan’s Central Station and Piazza del Duomo is 2 miles / 3.2 km. There are Three ways to get to Milan Cathedral from Central Station. I took a taxi and it was 10 Euros. Have a look at the following and you can decide what suits you.
If you are looking for the quickest way to get from Milan’s Central Station to Piazza del Duomo is to take a taxi. It takes 7 to 10 minutes depending on traffic. It costs around 10 Euros.
If you are considering the cheapest way to get from Milan’s Central Station to Piazza del Duomo, then it is the line 3 subway which costs 3 Euros and takes 15 min. It is located right in the Piazza del Duomo.
You can take a direct bus departing from Central Station m2 m3 and arrives at via larga. It is about 7 to 9 minutes walk to Piazza del Duomo, The bus services depart every two hours, and operate every day. The journey takes approximately 13 min. Costs 3 Euros.
7.4 | Planning your trip?
Travel resources at a Glance
Planning your dream vacation? Excellent! Here are all the Resources and Practical information you need for your self-guided or guided vacation.
Legal entry/Tourist travel Visa
Check Visa requirements with iVisa, a leading independent company in the travel documentation industry.
I have a few choices. Search Google flights because they offer very competitive prices. You could also try Opodo for cheap airfares. For special experiences, go to On the Beach and Jet2Holidays. My all time favourite has been Qatar Airways for long-haul flights for the comfort and their first-class service. I use British Airways as well. For all other global deals >> kiwi.com
My favourite website for booking hotels is booking.com – I love their flexible cancellation policy which means I’m covered till the last minute. I also like that the totals show up for the whole stay so it helps me budget better. Other favourites of mine are Millennium & Copthorne Group of Hotels and Resorts for their consistent high quality accommodations and service. You could also take a look at the Radisson Hotels chain that caters for all budget. For accommodations in UK that has a personal touch and affordable luxury, stay at Hotel du Vin.
Unique experiences & tours
My all time go to resource for unique experiences and tours is Get your Guide. I am also a fan of Viator for their special deals. You shall find suggestions on recommended tours sprinkled throughout TTS on each experience I write about.
Never travel without travel insurance and never overpay for travel insurance! I use and recommend World Nomads for your travel insurance needs. They even insure on the go. Before purchasing any any travel policy, read through the terms to ensure that the plan is right for you and your trip.
Never travel without these! I use and fully endorse all the products on this page but especially: High powered wireless power bank, Universal travel adapter and unlimited portable pocket wifi.
7.5 | Beautiful places to stay in Milan and in Milan’s neighbourhoods
Find the perfect hotel room in booking.com with flexible dates and last-minute cancellations. There are 5669 hotels and accommodations in Milan and I am certain you will find one to suit your needs – you can access booking.com here. Alternatively, stay at one of the 12 carefully selected beautiful places in Milan – hotels and aparthotels according to neighbourhoods.
Grab these latest deals in Milan!
7.6 | Find great activities to do in Milan
Find great day tours on Get Your Guide for a seamless and hassle free, skip the line experiences – Get Your Guide here .
Recommended read: 19 bucket list items not to miss when visiting Milan
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Finally…what do you think?
It’s your turn – what do you think? Is this post valuable to you in planning your visits to experience the best of Milan – sunset on the rooftop of the Duomo? Have I missed something that should be added here? If so, please let me know in comments below or via Contact Form, I would love to hear from you.
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Have a lovely time experiencing the sunset on the rooftop of the Duomo!
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The Best of Milan – Sunset on the rooftop of the Duomo first published at timelesstravelsteps.com and is regularly updated. Last update August 11, 2021