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San Miniato Al Monte, Florence

34 Via delle Porte Sante
Tel: 39 055 234 2731's insider take:

Built in the 11th century, San Miniato is one of Tuscany's most beautiful Romanesque churches and the oldest still standing in Florence after the Baptistery. It sits on a hill above the south bank of the Arno, with fabulous views over the city. The lovely exterior has an intricately patterned green, white, and black marble facade that incorporates a glittering mosaic. The unusual interior features a raised choir built over the crypt and an intricate marble floor decorated with signs of the zodiac. Artworks include the Chapel of the Cardinal of Portugal, a beautiful tabernacle—the Cappella del Crocefisso—by Michelozzo, and the Romanesque marble pulpit in the presbytery, with its semipagan symbolism. If you visit at 4:30 p.m. in winter or 5:30 p.m. in summer, you can hear Gregorian chant.

Open April through September 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. daily; November through March Monday through Saturday 8 a.m. to noon, 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.

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