Sant'Ambrogio Basilica
A treasury of medieval art

Though not explicitly mentioned as such by all travel guides, this church is about the most interesting one to visit in Milan.

The basilisk was originally consecrated by St Ambrose (387), but is for a large part a rebuild of the 11th century, though parts of the 4th century have remained.

Just a few of the highlights , making this a must see experience:

  • The Romanesque facade with the atrium decorated with 6th-century capital.

  • bell towers of the 9th and 12th century respectively

  • 9th-century golden and silver altar by Volvinius, with a 10th-century tabernacle

  • carved wooden choir with polychrome carvings of scenes of St.Ambrose's life

  • the "Serpent Column" : a bronze serpent on a column, kept here since 1002 4th-century

  • Sarcophagus of Stilichone with a marble pulpit

  • the Sacello di San Vittore, with mosaics of glittering gold from the 5th century, including a portrait of St. Ambrose

  • apse mosaic of Byzantine layout from the early 1200's

A peculiarity is the presence of the skeleton of St. Ambrose in the crypt, accompanied by St. Gervasius and St. Protasius. Do not forget to visit the Tesoro (entrance in the Portico della Canonica left of the church), as it houses many treasures indeed.

Next to the Basilica there is a museum with relics and artifacts of the history of the church (small fee). Also close to the basilica is the former cloister, designed by Bramante, now Catholic University.

You receive a 50% discount with the MilanoCard .

Reasonably accessible to the disabled (a few steps).

Metro 2 Sant'Ambrogio

Open: Mon-Sat: 9:30-12:15 and 2:30-6; Sun: 9-10 and 3-5
Address: Piazza Sant'Ambrogio 15
Cost: Free


Golden altar

Apse mosaic: Burial of St. Martin

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