Duomo di Pisa (Pisa Cathedral), Pisa

Duomo di Pisa (Pisa Cathedral), Pisa (must see)

The Pisa Cathedral is the medieval cathedral that stands on the Miracles Square and it is a fine example of Italian-Romanesque architecture.

Busketo began work on the building in 1064 and his tomb is built into the façade in white stone and grey marble with colored marble discs. You will see an inscription about the foundation of the Cathedral and Pisa’s victory against the Saracens.

On the eastern end of the building there is the replica of the Pisa Griffon. The 11th century original, which is the largest known Islamic metal sculpture, can be seen in the Cathedral Museum.

The huge bronze doors were added after the original wooden ones were destroyed by fire in 1595. Above the doors are four rows of open galleries; there is a statue of the Madonna and Child and the Four Evangelists. Worshippers usually enter the church by a door built in 1180 by Pisano on the bell tower side of the cathedral.

The interior of the cathedral has black and white marble facings and the mosaics are in Byzantine style. The granite Corinthian columns come from the mosque in Palermo, which was captured by Pisa in 1063.

The gilded ceiling and frescoed dome were restored after the 1595 fire, as was the nave’s coffer ceiling. The fresco of “Christ in Majesty with the Virgin Mary and St John the Evangelist” luckily survived the fire and can be find in the apse.

To mark the beginning of the Pisan new year a system was devised in the cathedral whereby a beam of light shines through a round window on the south side of the nave and, precisely at noon on March 25, lands on the same spot every year: on top of a shelf affixed to a pylon on the opposite side of the church. The lamp at the center of the nave is called Galileo's lamp, because a legend says that the great scientist formulated his theory of isochronism of the pendulum while watching its oscillations from the roof of the nave. The original, however, smaller and very different than this one, is found today in the Camposanto.

Galileo Galilei was consecrated as a scientist here.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Pisa. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Duomo di Pisa (Pisa Cathedral) on Map

Sight Name: Duomo di Pisa (Pisa Cathedral)
Sight Location: Pisa, Italy (See walking tours in Pisa)
Sight Type: Religious
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Pisa, Italy

Create Your Own Walk in Pisa

Create Your Own Walk in Pisa

Creating your own self-guided walk in Pisa is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Galileo's Pisa Walking Tour

Galileo's Pisa Walking Tour

Among the names that hardly need introduction there is one of Galileo Galilei. The most illustrious son of Pisa, this 16th-17th century physicist, mathematician, astronomer and philosopher went down in history as the “Father of Modern Science” and is forever cherished as one of the world’s greatest minds.

As Galileo's hometown, Pisa boasts a number of places linked to his life, of...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.8 Km or 1.1 Miles
Pisa Introduction Walking Tour

Pisa Introduction Walking Tour

The city of Pisa, in Italy's Tuscany region, is best known worldwide for its iconic Leaning Tower, as well as for being the birthplace of Galileo Galilei, whom considered by many as the Father of Modern Science.

The origin of the name Pisa is a mystery, while the origin of the city itself – as Etruscan – was confirmed only in 1991.

Founded on the seashore (which had since moved...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.0 Km or 1.9 Miles
Pisa's Historical Churches Tour

Pisa's Historical Churches Tour

The city of Pisa is one of the richest in Italy when it comes to church heritage. This historic city is home to many great churches and cathedrals that have the most wonderful paintings, sculptures and architecture. Take this self-guided walk walking tour to see the most beautiful houses of worship in Pisa.

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.0 Km or 0.6 Miles
Pisa Palaces Walking Tour

Pisa Palaces Walking Tour

As you continue your acquaintance with Pisa, you will notice that there is a lot more to see here than just a "leaning" landmark. Indeed, just like Italy in general, this particular Tuscan city boasts a glorious heritage of wonderful palaces, fit to transport you back in time.

The most beautiful palaces in Pisa are found on both sides of the Arno River, forming a multi-colored ribbon...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.1 Km or 1.3 Miles