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Famous Museums in Milan

Milan is a city rich in history, culture, and art and it offers an array of fascinating museums to explore. 

While Santa Maria delle Grazie and Leonardo da Vinci’s masterpiece, the Last Supper, are prominent attractions, several other renowned museums near the church are worth visiting. 

The Milan Duomo, a magnificent Gothic cathedral, stands majestically in Piazza del Duomo and houses the Duomo Museum, showcasing valuable artifacts. 

La Scala Museum, connected to the prestigious opera house, exhibits a treasure trove of theatrical artifacts. 

The Sforza Castle, constructed in the 15th century, houses collections, including the Museum of Antique Art and the Picture Gallery.

Another remarkable place is the Leonardo da Vinci Museum of Science and Technology, Italy’s largest of its kind.

The Ambrosiana Museum and Library is also a notable destination, known for its vast collection of books and artworks by famous artists.

These museums near Santa Maria delle Grazie offer enriching experiences and a deeper understanding of Milan’s cultural heritage.

Check out the 10 best museums in Milan.

Duomo di Milano

Visiting Milan Duomo is an absolute must for anyone traveling to Italy. 

Being the largest church in the country, it proudly stands in the center of Milan’s Piazza del Duomo, a masterpiece of Gothic design.

Its exterior is covered in a remarkable array of statues, showcasing the skills of that time.

The cathedral is immense, stretching 157 meters long and covering 11,700 square meters. It can hold more than 40,000 people.

If you plan to explore the Duomo, remember there is an entrance fee, starting at €8 ($9). 

However, it’s well worth the cost to witness this iconic landmark’s stunning beauty and historical significance.

The famous museum in Milan, the Duomo Museum, housing an array of valuable artifacts, is open from 10 am to 7 pm every day except Wednesdays.

You must buy different tickets if you want to visit the museum and enjoy the stunning view from the roof terrace.

You can experience the truly awe-inspiring glimpse into the rich history and architectural splendor of the city with a combo ticket to Last Supper at Santa Maria delle Grazie and Duomo di Milano.

Tour: Last Supper at Santa Maria delle Grazie + Duomo di Milano tour

Distance from Santa Maria delle Grazie: 3.6 km

La Scala Museum

La Scala Museum
Image: Viator.com

Located in Milan, Teatro alla Scala, also known as the ‘Theatre at the Stairway,’ is a prestigious opera house built between 1776 and 1778. 

It is renowned for its grandeur and historical significance in opera. 

You can experience the grandeur of this historic theater by purchasing tickets to one of its spectacular operas or ballets. 

Alternatively, those interested in the rich history of the theater can explore the Teatro alla Scala Museum, which is connected to the opera house. 

The museum is a treasure trove of theatrical artifacts, housing over 350 paintings and sculptures, 50 miniatures, more than 150 porcelain figures, a diverse collection of puppets, musical instruments and various artisanal objects. 

For a truly immersive experience, you can combine their visit to the museum with a Milan sightseeing tour, including entrance to La Scala, Duomo of Milan and Last Supper.

Tour: Last Supper at Santa Maria delle Grazie + La Scala Museum tour

Distance from Santa Maria delle Grazie: 3.3 km

Sforza Castle

Sforza Castle
Photo by Maria Cappelli on Unsplash

Castello Sforzesco, or Sforza Castle, now home to a remarkable art collection, is a historic fortress built in the 15th century by Francesco Sforza, the Duke of Milan. 

The castle holds various collections, including the Museum of Antique Art, the Museum of Musical Instruments and the Picture Gallery. 

With its rich historical significance and grand architectural design, this one of the 10 best museums in Milan is a must-visit destination. 

Inside the castle, you can explore the Rondanini Pietà Museum, featuring the last work created by Michelangelo and the Sala delle Asse, a room adorned with Leonardo da Vinci’s paintings.

The castle also houses the Collections of Ancient Art, showcasing Lombard sculptures from the 5th to the 16th century and the world-renowned Collections of Applied Arts. 

Entrance to the Sforza Castle is free, allowing you to explore its internal spaces. 

However, for access to the museums and exhibitions, tickets are necessary. 

Tour: Last Supper at Santa Maria delle Grazie + Sforza Castle tour

Distance from Santa Maria delle Grazie: 1 km

Leonardo da Vinci Museum of Science and Technology

The Museo Nazionale della Scienza e della Tecnologia Leonardo da Vinci, dedicated to the renowned painter and scientist Leonardo da Vinci, is Italy’s largest science and technology museum. 

Situated in the cloisters of a Renaissance monastery, this famous museum in Milan spans an impressive 50,000 square meters. 

Since its opening on February 5, 1953, it has been a captivating destination that offers a journey through the past, present, and future. 

The museum’s permanent exhibition boasts the most extensive collection of Leonardo’s ingenious projects and inventions.

You can marvel at models of his designs displayed at Clos Lucé. 

Located just outside Milan’s historic city center, in the ancient San Vittore al Corpo monastery, the museum is divided into seven main departments.

The areas encompass materials, transport, energy, communication, Leonardo da Vinci’s art and science, new frontiers and science for young people.

With an entrance ticket starting at €10, this museum offers an enriching and awe-inspiring experience for visitors of all ages and interests.

With a combo ticket, the museum’s proximity to the renowned Last Supper at Santa Maria delle Grazie, presents an excellent opportunity for an insightful day of exploration in Milan.

Tour: Last Supper at Santa Maria delle Grazie + Leonardo da Vinci Museum of Science and Technology tour

Distance from Santa Maria delle Grazie: 1.1 km

Leonardo da Vinci’s Vineyard

Leonardo da Vinci’s Vineyard
Image: Viator.com

Discover the fascinating world of Leonardo da Vinci with a visit to one of his most cherished possessions, his Vineyard. 

Gifted to the renowned artist in 1498 while diligently working on his masterpiece, the Last Supper, in the nearby refectory of the church and Dominican convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie. 

The vineyard was a gesture of recognition for Leonardo’s exceptional contributions to the Duke’s court. 

After more than 600 years, the vineyard has been meticulously replanted and lovingly restored to its former glory. 

This historical site holds great significance and a visit will offer you an opportunity to delve into the world of this artistic genius while savoring the beauty of his carefully cultivated vineyard.

Tour: Last Supper at Santa Maria delle Grazie and Leonardo da Vinci’s Vineyard tour

Distance from Santa Maria delle Grazie: 1 km

Church of San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore

The Church of San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore is a remarkable 16th-century church dating back to the early 1500s. 

Despite its inconspicuous exterior, the church’s interior is a true treasure, adorned with exquisite frescoes from the 16th century, earning it the nickname ‘Sistine Chapel of Milan.

The walls and ceilings of the church are completely covered with breathtaking frescoes from the sixteenth century, representing mainly Renaissance styles. 

Connected to a Benedictine convent, which now houses a famous museum in Milan– the Archaeological Museum, the church offers a unique combination of art and history. 

Inside the Archaeological Museum of Milan, you can admire frescoes by Bernardino Luini and explore artifacts from the Etruscans, Greeks, and Romans.

The museum spread across different floors, showcases different periods of history.

While entry to the church is free, there is an admission fee of €5 (€3 for certain groups) to access the museum. 

For a more personalized experience, consider booking a small group tour to explore the fascinating ancient structures of Milan and uncover the city’s hidden gems.

Tour: Last Supper at Santa Maria delle Grazie and San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore tour

Distance from Santa Maria delle Grazie: 1.1 km

Museo del Novecento

The Museo del Novecento, also known as the ‘Museum of the Twentieth Century,’ is a renowned art museum inside the Palazzo dell’Arengario in Piazza del Duomo. 

It holds a prominent place in the city’s cultural scene and is dedicated to showcasing the art of the 20th century. 

You can explore a vast collection of over 400 artworks, including paintings, statues and installations. 

The museum’s impressive collection spans from iconic artists like Kandinsky, Klee and Modigliani to contemporary creators like Jannis Kounellis, Alberto Burri and Emilio Vedova. 

In addition to its core exhibition, the Museo del Novecento actively conserves, researches and promotes Italy’s 20th-century cultural and artistic heritage. 

The magnificent grand spiral staircase greets you at the entrance, featuring Pellizza da Volpedo’s masterpiece, ‘Il Quarto Stato’ (The Fourth Estate). 

This architectural marvel connects various levels within the building, from the subway to the panoramic terrace, offering a stunning view of the Duomo. 

This museum near Duomo Milan also houses a bookshop and a restaurant, providing a comprehensive and enriching experience for art enthusiasts. 

Tickets for this enriching cultural journey are priced at  €10 for regular admission and €8 for reduced fares.

Distance from Santa Maria delle Grazie: 5.1 km

Ambrosiana Museum and Library

Ambrosiana Museum and Library
Image: Seemilan.com

The Ambrosiana Museum and Library, also known as Veneranda Biblioteca Ambrosiana, is a treasure chest for art and literature enthusiasts. 

Founded by Cardinal Federico Borromeo in 1607, it stands as one of Europe’s earliest libraries accessible to all who can read and write. 

This Center for Study and culture boasts an extensive collection of over 750,000 books and 35,000 manuscripts. 

Among its priceless possessions are more than 1,000 pages of Leonardo da Vinci’s Codex Atlanticus, featuring his remarkable drawings and explanations of inventions.

Within its walls, the Ambrosiana Museum also houses the Pinacoteca Ambrosiana, an art gallery showcasing masterpieces by renowned artists. 

The gallery’s architecture is a work of art, beautifully accentuating the displayed paintings with well-placed spotlights. 

The Pinacoteca Ambrosiana proudly exhibits Federico Borromeo’s paintings and various donations, featuring works by Leonardo da Vinci, Botticelli, Bramantino, Titian, Caravaggio and Pieter Brueghel the Elder.

Some noteworthy pieces include:

  • Leonardo da Vinci’s captivating Portrait of a Musician
  • Caravaggio’s enticing Basket of Fruit
  • Bramantino’s heartfelt Adoration of the Christ Child
  • Raphael’s iconic cartoon of ‘The School of Athens.’

Entry to the gallery is ticketed, with prices starting at €15.

Art lovers visiting Milan should take advantage of this famous museum in Milan.

Leonardo da Vinci Private Guided Tour: Last Supper at Santa Maria delle Grazie + Ambrosian Library private tour

Distance from Santa Maria delle Grazie: 2.3 km

Milan Natural History Museum

If you’re seeking a break from Milan’s art and architecture scene, the Museo Civico di Storia Naturale di Milano (Milan Natural History Museum) is a must-visit destination. 

Located in the heart of Milan, the Museo Civico di Storia Naturale di Milano (Milan Natural History Museum) is a treasure trove of natural beauty and knowledge. 

As the oldest civic museum in the city, it boasts six fascinating sections that cover a wide range of subjects, from the history of humankind to paleontology and zoology. 

The museum is housed in a stunning neo-Gothic palazzo, drawing inspiration from London’s renowned British Natural History Museum. 

After a massive restoration in 2013, the museum now encompasses 23 exhibition rooms spread across an impressive 5,500 square meters. 

You can treat yourself to captivating displays on Mineralogy, Geology, Palaeontology and Zoology, with a unique layout that delves into the evolution of Life on Earth. 

Notably, the museum showcases life-size skeletons of gargantuan creatures from prehistory, providing an awe-inspiring experience for both young and old. 

With affordable ticket prices, full-price admission at €5 and reduced admission at €3, this famous museum in Milan is conveniently located near the Santa Maria delle Grazie church.

Distance from Santa Maria delle Grazie: 3.7 km

Milan Triennale (Triennale di Milano)

Located in Parco Sempione, the Milan Triennale, or Triennale di Milano, is a renowned museum of art and design. 

Considered a treasure house of design and housed in the Palazzo dell’Arte, it is an architectural gem designed by Giovanni Muzio.

Constructed between 1931 and 1933, one of the highlights of the Triennale Design Museum, a permanent exhibition dedicated to Italian design, opened in 2007. 

The museum showcases various design, architecture and visual arts, providing visitors with an immersive experience. 

Within the Palazzo dell’Arte, you’ll also find the Teatro dell’Arte, a theater also designed by Muzio. 

If you’re planning to visit the Milan Triennale, check the ticket prices, with the full price starting at €15.

Distance from Santa Maria delle Grazie: 1.5 km

Featured Image: BGStock72 (Canva)

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