Located in the northern Lombardy region of Italy, Milan is a city known as the global capital of fashion and design. The city features a financial hub that is home to Italy’s stock exchange, along with a number of high-end shops and restaurants. Milan is also famous for the beautiful Gothic Duomo di Milano. Culture and art feature in the city, including the Santa Maria delle Grazie convent, home to the iconic Last Supper by Leonardo da Vinci. Both the cathedral and convent offer centuries of Italian art and culture. Another aspect of Milan’s culture is Pinacoteca di Brera, an attraction that contains the main public gallery of Italian paintings in the city, a branch from the cultural program of the Brera Academy that is also housed in Palazzo Brera. If you’re planning to visit, check out this article for a guide to Pinacoteca di Brera.
Milan offers plenty of things to do for everyone - check out our recommendations on best things to do when you’re visiting this destination.
Things to do / Highlights
The art gallery is housed in a palazzo from the 16th and 17th centuries, which was previously a church and monastery. It was then turned into a Jesuit college and cultural venue, and a library and astronomical observatory were added. After the Jesuits were suppressed in 1773, Austrian archduchess Maria Theresa turned the site into an academy of art. In 1882, the Pinacoteca was made independent from the academy, and its collection has grown larger each year since then.
A free guided tour is included in your ticket when you visit Pinacoteca di Brera, where you will learn the history of the Brera Museum and the fascinating collections you will see.
Walk around the art gallery
The gallery at Pinacoteca reveals real treasures. See the painting by Andrea Mantegna entitled the Dead Christ and Three Mourners, or Saint Mark Preaching in a Square of Alexandria in Egypt by Gentile and Giovanni Bellini. Gaze at the Marriage of the Virgin by Raffaello Sanzio, and Supper at Emmaus by Caravaggio. Visit the Virgin with Child, Angels and Saints by Piero della Francesca or the Kiss by Francesco Hayez.
Check out the Drawing Cabinet
It is also possible to visit lesser-known collections, including a display of drawings from the early 19th century. These were part of a selection of teaching supports for the Accademia di Belle Arti. This includes drawings from Leonardo da Vinci and Simone Cantarini.
Pinacoteca di Brera is wheelchair-friendly all throughout, making the art accessible to everyone.
Paintings are chronological
Visitors should understand that the majority of the paintings in the art gallery are religious art, which might not appeal to all visitors. However, all the paintings are placed in chronological order throughout the 38 halls of the gallery and are conveniently displayed together, depending on the school to which they belong.
Free access to the courtyard
One of the highlights of a visit to this museum is the striking courtyard inside palazzo, which is free to visit and ideal for relaxation between viewing the artworks.
How to get there
The Pinacoteca di Brera can be accessed in a number of ways.
The closest stations are Lanza on the M2 line, Montenapoleone on the M3 line, and Cairoli on the M1 line.
The nearest bus stops are Monte di Pieta, Pontaccio (route 61), or Forobuonaparte (route 57).
The nearest tram stops are Cusani (routes 1-2-12-14) and Lanza (route 4).
The closest taxi stop is via Mercato.
From Stazione Centrale, take the M2 or M3 underground lines. From Stazione Garibaldi and Stazione Cadorna FN, take the M2 underground line.
Standard tickets cost 12 EUR (13 USD), with a reduced rate of 2 EUR (2.20 USD) for EU citizens who are 18 to 25 years old. Visitors under 18 enter free of charge. Tickets can be purchased here.
An audio guide is available for 5 EUR (5.60 USD) in English, Italian, Spanish, French, German, and Russian.
Guided tours can be arranged at 80 EUR (89 USD) for school groups, 100 EUR (111 USD) for Italian speakers, and 120 EUR (134 USD) for groups speaking other languages.
Friends of Brera Temporary Card
Everyone who purchases a ticket at Pinacoteca di Brera will have the chance to avail of a temporary membership called Friends of Brera. If you choose to request one, this card will be valid for three months and will give free entrance over that period. On each subsequent visit, you will just need to show the card for entry.
Free entrance is available on every first Sunday of the month, except in the case of exhibitions that require separate tickets. On every third Thursday of the month, a special rate of 3 EUR (3.30 USD) applies for an evening visit from 6 pm to 10:15 pm. Every weekend, those aged 65 years or more can enter for a special rate of 1 EUR (1.11 USD).
Milan: Brera District & Pinacoteca Guided Experience
Duration: 2 hour
Pinacoteca Di Brera information
Pinacoteca di Brera
Address: Via Brera, 28, 20121 Milano, Italy
Opening hours: Tue - Sun: 8:30am - 7:15pm (closed on Mon)
Cost: 12 EUR (13 USD)
Official Website: Pinacoteca di Brera
Department of Tourism:Turismo Milano
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