This is our fourth visit to Florence as a family and we are still discovering things – this year it has been the Medici Chapel at San Lorenzo. We almost managed to see it two years ago but arrived just as it was closing – so this year we booked tickets in advance – an excellent idea as it allows queue jumping!
First impressions aren’t great as the lower area is just a museum of artefacts and a shop and is almost ‘crypt’ like. However once up the stairs and into the main chapel with its Vasari painted ceiling and marble walls and floor one becomes quite ‘blown away’ (but no photographs are allowed)! It is bigger than I expected (although as the rest of the family pointed out to me, it is that big externally so what did I expect!). The sarcophagi are massive and it looks like a building more akin to Royalty than a family of bankers (certainly not current bankers)!
The second chapel is much less grand but has the Da Vinci sculptures that are pretty impressive even to my eye, the Madonna and child being particularly nice. This area is actually unfinished as Da Vinci got a ‘better offer’ and moved to Rome during its construction so it is not actually finished as Da Vinci designed it, there are drawings on the wall of what he planned which is quite an interesting addition as well.
So as I say, it has taken us four visits to Florence to get to see this, but it is definitely worthwhile and recommended to anyone planning a visit.