Basilica of Santa Croce

Basilica of Santa Croce: Our most recommended tours and activities

Florence Santa Croce Church Tour

1. Florence Santa Croce Church Tour

Start the tour in the main square, where the famous soccer game played in medieval costumes, the Calcio Storico Florentino, takes place here every year in June. Your guide will describe in detail of all the immense artistic wealth in Santa Croce; frescoes (1380) by Gaddi in the Cappella Maggiore tell the story of "Santa Croce", and beautiful frescoes by Giotto in the Bardi and Peruzzi Chapels show scenes from the life of St. Francis and St. John the Evangelist. On your way to the left of the entrance, see the memorial of the 19th-century playwright Giovanni Battista Niccolini built as an inspiration for the Statue of Liberty. As you walk through the hallowed walls, learn about the art of Donatello and his crucifix, one of the jewels of the Renaissance, as well as the art of Brunelleschi and the perfect architectural harmony of his Chapel of Fools. See the monumental cemetery and damaged paintings and that was destroyed in the tragic flood of 1966 and have been subsequently restored. After visiting the interior, learn about the exterior which is covered with a polychrome marble façade. Finally, the guide will tour you around the Bell Tower, Crypt and the 16 chapels. The tour takes about an hour, and you will have the opportunity to return to anything you might want to see again after the tour ends.

Florence: E-Bike Tour with Michelangelo Square

2. Florence: E-Bike Tour with Michelangelo Square

Cycle through the city of Florence to discover the hidden treasures of the birthplace of the Renaissance. Listen to captivating stories while touring through many of the significant squares that make Florence so rich in history and art. Discover the Medici Palace, which was the home of Cosimo the Elder and the workplace of Donatello, Michelangelo, and Botticelli. Then visit Republic Square, one of the main squares in Florence that has formed the city center since Roman times. Also, visit Michelangelo Square, to take in the best panoramic views of the city. Discover the captivating history of the city that gave birth to incredible artists and amazing scientists. During your ride, you'll also come across historic and religious landmarks, such as Pitti Palace, Piazza della Signoria, and the Basilicas of Santo Spirito, Santa Croce, and San Lorenzo.

Florence: Eco Tour by Electric Cart

3. Florence: Eco Tour by Electric Cart

Explore the historic center of Florence by electric golf cart and leave your conscience clean as you cover more sights than possible on a walking tour. Climb aboard the eco-friendly cart in Piazza San Firenze and drive through the streets of the Renaissance city, passing Piazza Signoria and the Porcellino Market. Continue to the Duomo and marble façade of the Basilica of Santa Maria Novella. Journey along the banks of the River Arno to Piazza Ognissanti. An MP3 player will be provided with commentary about the history of the city and its sites so that you can sit back and relax as your escort drives you across the Santa Trinita Bridge. Marvel at the Pitti Palace and Ponte Vecchio. Continue to the Ponte alle Grazie, rebuilt after it was destroyed in World War II. Go to the Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale (National Central Library) on Piazza Santa Croce to see the largest library in Italy.

Florence: 2-Hour Guided Bike Tour

4. Florence: 2-Hour Guided Bike Tour

Discover Florence’s rustic charm by bike. Follow paths too far to reach on foot and too narrow to reach by bus. See iconic monuments and find hidden gems with a professional history guide. Start your tour at the agency. Your experienced guide will lead you through the beautiful streets of the old town and the Oltrarno. See Florence’s famous landmarks, such as the Artisan district, Palazzo Pitti, San Frediano, Ponte Vecchio, the Uffizi square, Santa Croce, Piazza della Signoria, the Medieval district, the Duomo, and Piazza della Repubblica. Pause throughout the tour to learn some history and fun facts about the city. You will learn where to find the best gelato, bistecca alla Fiorentina, and truffles. Your guide will also show you lesser-known spots, often unseen by tourists.

Florence: Eco-Friendly Panoramic Tour in Electric Golf Cart

5. Florence: Eco-Friendly Panoramic Tour in Electric Golf Cart

Enjoy an eco-friendly ride through the ancient streets and iconic squares of Florence on an electric golf cart. Experience the "Birthplace of the Renaissance" with all its famous landmarks and learn the history behind each corner with your audio guide. Strap in to your cart, select your language, and embark on an unforgettable sightseeing tour along the historic streets of Florence. Visit emblematic landmarks like the Duomo Square, home of the 4th biggest cathedral in the world: the Santa Maria del Fiore. Then, ride straight into the heart of Florence and arrive at Republic Square, the very spot where the city was born in 89 BC. Continue to Signoria Square and view the famous statues such as the powerful Perseus by B. Cellini and the copy of David by B. Michelangelo. Discover the Great Pantheon of Florence and glide past the Basilica di Santa Croce where many great Italians were laid to rest, including Michelangelo, Galileo, and Macchiavelli among others. Ride along the Arno river and ascend the surrounding hills to reach Michelangelo Square. Be rewarded with the most breathtaking views of Florence.

Florence: Eco-Friendly Golf Cart City Tour

6. Florence: Eco-Friendly Golf Cart City Tour

Cruise by iconic sights in Florence on an eco-friendly electric golf cart tour. Roll past sights like Ponte Vecchio, Palazzo Pitti, and Brunelleschi's Dome. Listen to an audio guide as you go. Choose from 1-hour tour or a 1.5-hour tour that goes to Piazzale Michelangelo. Hop on an electronic golf cart head to Ponte Vecchio and cross the Ponte Santa Trinita Renaissance bridge over the Arno to the Oltrarno area, where you can admire the majestic Palazzo Pitti. Pass under the Vasari Coridor on your way back to the city center. Marvel at the architectural style of the Basilica of Santa Croce, the National Library and the back of the Cathedral with the famous Brunelleschi Dome. See one of the oldest hospitals in the world and the headquarters of the Medici family. Discover the legend of "Berta" and glide past the central train station. Continue towards the Santa Maria Novella with its impressive Renaissance façade.  Arrive at the Ognissanti district, gaze at the old city walls, and hear interesting facts and stories about Florentine traditions.

Florence Walking Tour with a Local Guide

7. Florence Walking Tour with a Local Guide

Get an introduction to the history of the Italian Renaissance on a walking tour of Florence city center, and discover a host of historical monuments with the help of a local guide. Go for a stroll through the cloisters of the Basilica di Santa Croce, and then make your way to Piazza dei Peruzzi and the Palazzo Bargello. Pass Porcellino market, and then listen to the story of the city's oldest bridge at the Ponte Vecchio. Wander small streets that date back to the Middle Ages to arrive at the political heart of the city at Piazza della Signoria. Get impressive views of the Uffizi Gallery and Palazzo Vecchio, historically the home of the government of Florence.  Arrive at Piazza del Duomo in the oldest part of the city. Marvel at the marble engravings and the magnificent dome of the Duomo. Continue to the Basilica di San Lorenzo, from where you can explore the market district by yourself.

Florence: Santa Croce Basilica Guided Tour and Entry-Ticket

8. Florence: Santa Croce Basilica Guided Tour and Entry-Ticket

Experience one of the most visited monuments in Florence on a guided-tour. Get an entry-ticket and see Santa Croce, which is revered due to its artistic value, and for being known as the "Temple of Italian Glory." See the burial place of geniuses such as Michelangelo, Galileo, and Machiavelli. Start the tour at the Santa Croce Square, led by a licensed tour guide, who will help you discover the beautiful interior of the Basilica for yourself. Next, marvel at masterpieces from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance while the tour guide points out works that cannot be missed, including 16 chapels dating back to the 14th century, monumental tombs by different artists, a cloister, and a chapel designed by the renaissance architect Brunelleschi.

Florence: Electric Bike Tour with Wine & Local Products

9. Florence: Electric Bike Tour with Wine & Local Products

Cruise comfortably and effortlessly by electric bicycle, admiring the glorious juxtaposition of the rural Tuscan landscape with Florence's urban vibrancy. Cross the region's gorgeous hillside eventually arriving in the picturesque town of Fiesole for an insight into the relaxed, country lifestyle. Continue along peaceful archaic roads. Admire the harmonious scenery, Renaissance-era cloister, and even sample some of the produce (not included). Before heading back to where the tour started, a small Osteria will delight you with some wine, accompanied by a taste of Florentine food.

Florence Night Tour by Electric Bike

10. Florence Night Tour by Electric Bike

See the Renaissance monuments of Florence from a different perspective on a night tour by electric bike. Reach landmark attractions with ease and enjoy the pleasant summer evening breeze. Cross historical bridges in silence to reach one of the most celebrated scenic spots. Admire the astonishing beauty of Florence from the high vantage point of Piazzale Michelangelo. Get bird's eye views of all the Gothic and Renaissance monuments and typical Lungarni streets that wind along the banks of the River Arno. Admire the celebrated street lamps romantically reflecting light on the water. Cross back to the old town to explore the medieval alleys with the help of your guide. See Brunelleschi's impressive dome on Piazza del Duomo, and visit the world's most celebrated Franciscan church at the Basilica di Santa Croce. Discover an open-air museum of statues on Piazza della Signoria.

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What people are saying about Basilica of Santa Croce

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 2,870 reviews

Our guide Lara was simply fabulous! Through her obvious enthusiasm for her subject she brought to life the stories behind the famous people buried in this church. Highly recommended!!

La nostra guida Pamela era molto preparata e ci ha fatto fare un giro stupendo fra i monumenti e le bellezze di Firenze....davvero un tour spettacolare!!!

Guido was an excellent guide. He not only told us about the church and all it had to offer but he also gave us a history lesson. Highly recommended!

We had a a wonderful few hours. It was great to see areas outside the city and Gabriel our guide was very knowledgeable and humorous.

Bessi was great! Fun ride to sights and most of all to Michelangelo Square.