The Palazzo Medici-Riccardi

A Medici palace with a gorgeous early Renaissance frescoed chapel

Palazzo Medici-Riccardi
Palazzo Medici-Riccardi
This is not really a museum—though it hosts many temporary exhibits, and has some lovely frescoes—but it makes for a nice stopover when you're in the neighborhood—which is likely; the main tourist office is right next-door.

This was the main Medici family palace in town, built in 1445–55 by early Renaissance genius Michelozzo for the founding patriarch of the Medici clan, Cosimo "Il Vecchio" de' Medici.

(He's the one who raised the Medici from being one-among-many of the city's money-lenders to become bankers to the kings of Europe and the Papal curia in Rome and—the de facto rulers of Florence.)

The Gozzoli frescoes in the Magi Chapel and the Galleria frescoes

The palazzo is most famous these days for the small family Chapel of the Magi, frescoed in 1459 by early Renaissance great Benozzo Gozzoli with a vibrant, 360-degree depiction of the Procession of the Magi but populated by various members of the Medici family as well as other famous Florentines of the age.

The Procession of the Magi frescoes by Benozo Gozzoli in the Palazzo Medici-Riccardi.
The Procession of the Magi frescoes by Benozzo Gozzoli in the Palazzo Medici-Riccardi.
Nearby is the Galleria, a much larger chamber (sporadically open), its ceiling frescoed by Luca Giordano with a self-aggrandizing Apotheosis of the Medici Family. It's impressive—in a busy, baroque way—and that's about it.

Tips & links


Via Cavour at Via de' Gori
tel. +39-055-276-0340


Thurs–Tues: 9am–7pm



With Firenze Card: Free


Bus: C1; 14, 23
Hop-on/hop-off: Stazione FS SMN (A,B), Piazza Stazione (C)

How long does Palazzo Medici-Riccardi take?

Planning your day: OK, you really could see this in 20 minutes (barring there being some special exhibit you want to see). Honest. In fact, its a bit disconcerting that they've made a big deal about it and installed a ticket booth and started charging admission and everything. A few years ago, you'd just pop in, go up the staircase, and see the chapel. It was a gorgeous, hidden gem—and free. Having to pay for it (and pay quite a lot, actually; €7 at last check) makes it seem like so much more of a let-down. The ticket office closes 1 hour early..

» Florence itineraries

Use the Firenze Card

The Palazzo Medici Riccardi is covered by the Firenze Card—free admission, no waiting in line.

Palazzo Medici-Riccardi tours

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