Santa Maria della Scala is one of the oldest and largest pilgrim hospices and hospitals in Europe. After a new hospital was built at the gates of the city, this huge complex was transformed into the most important cultural centre in Siena. Following the restoration of 13,000 square metres, the ancient hospital today bears living witness to almost 1,000 years of Western history. With its passages carved out of the rock, its huge pietra serena and brick spaces, its churches and chapels, its streets and courtyards open to the sky and its monumental frescoed halls, Santa Maria della Scala is a kind of “city within the city”, a cultural centre bursting with significance, history and art.
Santa Maria della Scala Museum Complex
Piazza dell Duomo, 1 - 53100 Siena
- March 15 - October 15 and December 23 - January 6:
- from Saturday to Wednesday from 10am to 7pm
- Fridays from 10am to 10pm
- October 16 to March 14:
- Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10am to 5pm
- Fridays from 10am to to 8pm
- Saturdays and Sundays from 10am to 7pm
- Closed on Tuesdays
Closed on December 25.
Last entrance one hour before the closing time
Reservations must be made with a minimum of 1 day notice.
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Before making your reservation, please, read the Ordering Informations
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PLEASE NOTICE: Confirmed time is not always the same time you requested; museum automatically confirms the closest available time (any time) on the same date if requested time is sold out.
Refund is possible, upon presentation to the cashier of unused tickets, in the following cases:
1. Closure of museums due to the Local Council and / or natural events
2. Reduction of attendance up to a maximum of 5 (five) than prepaid.
Before You Book
PLEASE NOTE: Immediately after submitting an order, you will receive two emails. The first email contains your order summary (this one you receive immediately after placing your order), the second email confirms your successful payment (one business day after placing the order). In order to receive these two emails, please make sure that you enter your email address correctly and check that antispam or antivirus filters do not block emails from our [email protected] address. Users of AOL, Comcast and Sbcglobal.net need to pay special attention to this, please. Vouchers will also be available, one business day after the request, at your dashboard.
IMPORTANT NOTE: The time you select on the order form is your preferred time. The museum or attraction will automatically confirm the closest available time, which can be anytime during opening hours on the selected date, if your preferred time is no longer available.
Santa Maria della Scala Museum Complex
Founded in the 9th century, Santa Maria della Scala was one of the oldest hospitals in Europe until health services were suspended a few years ago. Since then, it has been subject to a major cultural recovery operation in order to become a museum.
Situated in the heart of Siena in front of the Cathedral, the large complex keeps examples of a thousand years of history still remarkably intact. From the Etruscan and Roman times to the Middle Ages and the Renaissance – you will see the history of Siena and Tuscany reflected in remarkable ways.
With its monumental rooms, narrow corridors, brightly colored frescoes, dark crypts, labyrinthine tunnels carved in volcanic rock, and vast spaces with vaulted brick ceilings the museum complex conjures vivid images - of Etruscan civilization, weary pilgrims, travelers and sick people, noble lords, Byzantine emperors, abandoned children and praying monks.
The greatest artists have left precious and rare examples of their genius, and the large building (350,000,000 cubic meters) is a splendid synthesis of the city and its history. It is a vessel of architecture, works of art, and history - telling of a life that has unfolded without interruption for well over a thousand years.
The Museum\'s currently accessible 12,000 square meters are organized in four levels.
The level of the Piazza Duomo (level 4) leads to the monumental area with the church of Santissima Annunziata, the Old Sacristy, Palazzo Squarcialupi, the Chapel of Our Lady and the Chapel of the Mantle.
From here you enter the Pellegrinaio with the famous fifteenth-century fresco cycle. As you pass through a bright hall named Passeggio you will notice side rooms that were formerly used as hospital wards and serve now as exhibition spaces and museum areas.
From the lower level (level 3) you enter the Corticella, a courtyard where many of the building\'s paths intersect. This area gives access to the Fienile (medieval hay-loft) with the Fonte Gaia fountain by Jacopo della Quercia. Two secular confraternities have their seats here: the Brotherhood of Saint Catherine of the Night and the Company of Saint Mary under the Vaults.
The Corticella, or little courtyard, gives access to the "tunnels" under Santa Maria della Scala (level 1) where the archaeological museum is currently housed.