Early Morning Duomo Tour with Exclusive Entry and Brunelleschi's Dome

Be among the first of the day to enter Florence cathedral on this VIP experience

Travel Flexibly · 2.30h · Florence, Italy

Dreaming of visiting the historic Duomo in Florence, but don’t want to share the experience with hundreds of tourists? Then join this exclusive, early morning tour, where you and your intimate group will be the first to enter Florence’s most treasured landmark. You’ll witness the official key master unlock the doors of the Duomo, and be among the first to step inside Florence’s 11th-century marble Cathedral as the lights are switched on.

  • New Tour
  • Early Entrance Florence Duomo Tour
  • Meet your guide​
  • Follow the Clavigero
  • Unlock Duomo's secrets
  • Exclusive Duomo tour
  • Discover Santa Maria del Fiore​
  • Indulge in a traditional Italian breakfast
  • Ascend Brunelleschi's Dome​
  • Morning gaze upon Florence​

Your exclusive tour begins in the Duomo Square at daybreak, where you’ll meet your local tour guide in front of the Cathedral’s main entrance. With the rest of the city still asleep, you and your small group of 19 people max, will be by the key master’s side as they unlock the doors to Florence’s beloved Cathedral. Witness the illumination of renowned frescoes as the lights are switched on, and then follow your guide to the magnificent Duomo clock, created by the legendary artist, Paolo Uccello.

After continuing to tour the rest of the immaculate Cathedral, your guide will take you to a nearby, historic café for a traditional Italian breakfast. After your caffeine boost, you’ll be taken through a side entrance of the Duomo, for an exclusive visit to Brunelleschi’s cupola. You’ll learn about Brunelleschi's artistic genius as you take in captivating views of Florence. Here, you’ll complete your tour just as the city begins to wake.

Florence VIP Early Morning Duomo Tour Description

  • Your 2.5 hour tour includes:

  • VIP, semi-private Duomo tour

  • Skip-the-line to Brunelleschi’s dome

  • Witness the switching on of the Cathedral lights

  • English speaking guide

  • Italian breakfast at historic café

  • Small group of 19 people max

Meet the Chiavigero

After joining your local guide and small group at Duomo Square, outside of the Duomo’s main entrance, you’ll meet the official chiavigero—or key master. Relish in this rare opportunity to watch the Cathedral’s doors unlock, and be among the first of the day to enter the city’s most enchanting landmark. Your exclusive journey through Florence's iconic Duomo is not just a visual feast but a step back in time. As you stand in the early morning glow of Duomo Square, imagine the centuries that have passed since its inception.

The Duomo, officially named Santa Maria del Fiore, has been a symbol of Florence's rich history and cultural prowess since its groundbreaking in 1296, and the unlocking of its doors by the chiavigero carries echoes of the past, as this ritual has been performed for generations.

Watch as the Duomo is Illuminated

One of the most important roles of the key master is to switch on the lights of the Duomo. You’ll be mesmerized as you witness the light pour in over the vault and illuminate over jaw-dropping frescoes.

Stare in amazement as Giorgio Vasari and Federico Zuccari’s “Last Judgement” comes into view. This famous 3600 square meter fresco dazzles in vibrant colors and details, and you practically have it all to yourself in this near private setting.

The Cathedral itself is a testament to the genius of Filippo Brunelleschi and stands as a living chronicle of Renaissance art and architecture. Each fresco, every marble column, and the very stones beneath your feet have stories to tell—from the Medici patronage to the architectural innovations that shaped the city.

View the Duomo’s Clock

Next, admire Paolo Uccello’s Duomo clock, a magnificent fresco by the legendary artist. Your guide will tell you all about the history of this stunning work of art, as well as the intriguing story behind why the hours are painted counterclockwise.

Continue exploring this historic marble Cathedral, taking your time to admire each intricate detail and appreciate this once-in-a-lifetime, exclusive experience.

Pause for a Breakfast Break

After exploring the Cathedral’s ornate interior, it’s time to refuel with breakfast. Your expert guide will take you to an elegant, historical café nearby. Enjoy a traditional Italian breakfast and café with the locals, before heading back to the Duomo for one last VIP treat.

See the City from Brunelleschi’s Cupola

After breakfast, walk back to the Duomo, where you’ll enter through the Porta Canonici, a side entrance that only your group will have access to. From here, you’ll walk up 463 steps of a steep, alluring staircase to the Duomo’s rooftop. Your guide will treat you to an exclusive tour of Brunelleschi’s cupola, as well as explain Brunelleschi’s fascinating history and how he built this impressive dome. Take in breathtaking views of Florence as you savor the moment of this truly unique, cultural experience. The tour ends at the Duomo, and you will have the chance to explore Florence afterwards.

What you get with this tour
VIP semi-private tour of the Duomo
Be the first to enter the Duomo at daybreak
Witness the lights turn on in the Cathedral
English speaking guide
Skip-the-line entrance to Brunelleschi’s cupola
Breakfast at historical café
Small group of 16 people max
View Florence from the top of the Duomo
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Frequently Asked Questions

What to bring?

We suggest wearing comfortable clothes and shoes.

What to bring?

We suggest wearing comfortable clothes and shoes.

Is this tour run by The Tour Guy?

This tour is run by our trusted and vetted partners in Florence.

What if I have concerns about my mobility on this tour?

Regretfully, this tour is not suitable for guests with wheelchairs or impaired mobility, due to the steep, 463 step staircase to the cupola.

What happens if it rains?

We run our tour rain or shine.

Is there a dress code to enter the religious sites on this tour?

We ask both men and women to cover knees and shoulders, otherwise you might be refused entry inside the Duomo. We understand the summers in Florence can be hot, so a great alternative is to bring a shawl/scarf/sweater with you. That way you can cover your knees and shoulders when necessary.

Is lunch included in the price of the tour?

A traditional, light Italian breakfast and coffee are included in the price of this tour.

What if I have food allergies, intolerances, or other dietary requirements?

Please contact us in advance so we can do our best to accommodate your needs. We will work with our tour partners to provide you with an alternative when possible.

Can I bring my kids and do I have to pay for them?

Kids aged 7+ are welcome on this tour, though minors must always be accompanied by an adult. Kids that are aged 7-12 are charged a reduced fee. Please choose accordingly during the booking.

Does this tour include hotel pickup?

No, hotel pickup is not included. You will meet your guide and the rest of your group in the Duomo Square, in front of the main entrance of the Cathedral.

Where does this tour end?

This tour ends in the Duomo, after visiting Brunelleschi’s cupola.

Does the itinerary of this tour ever change?

The itinerary of the tour may slightly vary depending on restrictions decided by the museum board. If this happens, the inclusions and the tour quality will always be preserved.

Is there any chance this tour will be canceled?

On the rare occasion the tour is canceled, we'll inform you as soon as possible. We will work with you to reschedule your tour when possible or provide a full refund.

Start From: $183.15

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$183.15 / per person
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