Experience the extraordinary opening of the Porta del Cielo (Door of Heaven) – or, at least, Siena’s version of it. From April 6 to October 27, 2013, if you happen to visit Siena, don’t miss this spectacular opportunity.
For the first time, after extensive renovation, it will be possible to take a tour of the walkways in the vault of the Duomo of Siena. Internal passages, balconies (both inside and outside) and hidden attic spaces will be open to small, guided groups. Until now, these parts of the Cathedral were accessible only to the architects and builders in charge of maintaining the structure over the centuries.
The two massive towers on each side of the façade of the Duomo house spiral staircases that lead up into the roof where there is a series of walkways and rooms that provide astonishing views of both the interior of the Duomo and the city of Siena outside.
You will be able to look down onto the marble intarsia floor of the main nave and understand its design in a way that until now could only be done through photographs. You will be able to traverse the walkway over the main altar and almost reach out and touch Duccio di Buoninsegna’s stained glass rose window. Finally, you will be able to walk along the balcony inside the dome of the cathedral from which there is a fabulous view of the high altar.
The visiting itinerary “from above” will thus permit visitors to better understand the dedication of the Cathedral of Siena to the Assumption of the Madonna, and the strong connection the people of Siena have had with their ‘patron’ for centuries: Sena vetus civitas Virginis.
The exterior views extend over the Basilica of St. Domenico, the Medici Fortress, the entire dome of the chapel of St. John the Baptist and the landscape of the surrounding Sienese hills.
The Door to Heaven Guided Tour (La Porta del Cielo)
6 April – 27 October, 2013
Reservations required: tickets per person €25, groups of max 17 people €400. Tel +39 0577 286300 (Monday – Friday 9am – 5pm) or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
For all of the details of what to wear and what to consider before taking the tour see the official website.