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Museums and exhibitions

Discover historical buildings and museums in and around the city of Como.

Como Cathedral

Como's Cathedral is the last of Gothic cathedrals built in Lombardy. Works began in 1396, ten years after the founding of Milan Cathedral. It took three and half centuries to complete and as a result is a harmonious blend of different styles.

The original plans were drawn up by the architect Lorenzo degli Spazzi from the neighbouring Intelvi valley, modified by Pietro Breggia from Como as well as other artists during the course of time. Inside, there are three naves divided by ten columns along each nave and cross-vaulted ceilings. Amongst the many works of art that adorn the interiors are a series of 16th century tapestries, paintings by Gaudenzio Ferrari, Bernardino Luini, il Morazzone, frescoes in the Sacristy and sculptures by the Rodari brothers.

The dome was designed by Filippo Juvarra, architect of the king of Sardinia.

The 19th century windows were restored by the Bertini brothers who worked on the stained glass windows in Milan Cathedral.

Next to the Cathedral is the Broletto and a bell tower.

Silk Museum

Opened in 1990, the museum was conceived to document and illustrate the history of Como's silk manufacturing.

Inside this small museum you can see all the various stages of silk production from the cultivation of mulberry and silkworms to the finished fabric. Admire old reeling mill machines, hand and mechanical looms, print cylinders and frames and the impressive collection of dyes.

Leonardo Da Vinci’s Last Supper in Milan

Leonardo's Last Supper can be seen inside the Dominican convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie. Painted between 1494 and 1498, this masterpiece has undergone several restorations, the most recent one lasting 20 years and completed in 1999.

Teatro alla Scala in Milan

Designed by Giuseppe Piermarini, it was inaugurated on 3rd August 1778 with "Europa riconosciuta" by Antonio Salieri. This was the first opera theatre in the world with electric lighting. Destroyed by bombing during the Second World War and later rebuilt.

La Scala for the last two centuries consecrates the fortunes of singers, musicians and composers. Amongst important operas performed here are: Othello and Falstaff by G. Verdi, G. Turandot by Puccini and Mefistofele A. Boito.
After restoration works lasting 28 months, La Scala re-opened on 7th December 2004, with the same opera that was performed for its inauguration in 1778.

The Leonardo da Vinci National Museum of Science and Technology

Located in an early 16th century monastery in the heart of Milan, the museum covers an area of 40,000 square meters and is the largest scientific-technical museum in Italy.
Its collections of about 10,000 objects, testify the present scientific and technological development and explore the complex relationship between man-machine from the figure of Leonardo da Vinci.

The Museum is since its birth crucial not only for research, study and preservation, but also for the dissemination of scientific culture and its technological application.

Today the museum presents itself as a cultural location and a place for dialogue between the scientific community and citizens, with tours to historical collections, interactive activities in the labs, scientific events, special projects, exhibitions, theatre performances, lectures, conferences , concerts, training, days and evenings devoted to the institutions, companies and citizens.

Verona Arena

The Romans built the Amphitheatre outside Verona's first circle of city walls in the first part of the 1st century AD. It hosted games where gladiators would fight each other or wild animals before a vast public that came from all over the territory. The facade, of which there is still a small section (the so-called "Ala" or "Wing"), was entirely built in large blocks of white and pink limestone from nearby Valpolicella. In the Middle Ages, stones from the Arena were taken for use on other buildings. Later, it resumed its role as a site for shows and events: a role it continues to play today for the annual summer opera season, which began in 1913.
Since the Renaissance, there have been numerous large restoration projects, leading to the gradual reintegration of the tiered seating inside. For some years, a large-scale project has been in progress to ensure the preservation and dignity of the Arena.

LAC Lugano Arte e Cultura, the cultural centre of the city of Lugano

LAC Lugano Arte e Cultura is a new cultural centre dedicated to the visual arts, music and the performing arts, which promises to become one of Switzerland’s most important cultural institutions, with the aim of promoting a wide range of art and establishing Lugano as a cultural crossroads between northern and southern Europe.