The Castello Sforzesco is a 14th century castle on Piazza Castello in Milan. The spaces around the castle’s courtyard house a number of museums, which feature works by famous artists such as Bramante and Leonardo Da Vinci.
Castello Sforzesco Milan
Address, opening times and admission
The Castello Sforzesco is open every day from 7am to 6pm in winter and from 7am to 7pm in the summer months. Admission to the castle itself is free, but the various museums require payment. The address of the Castello Sforzesco is Piazza Castello – 20121 Milano (Tel. +39 0288463700). Public transportation: Metro: MM1 (Cadorna and Cairoli stops) and MM2 (Cadorna and Lanza stops); bus 18, 37, 50, 58, 61, 94; streetcar: 1, 2, 4, 12, 14 and 19.
The various museums are open from 09:00 to 17:30. Closed on Mondays. Closed January 1, Easter Monday, May 1. Reservations: +39 02 88463703.
A brief history of the Castello Sforzesco
Originally, the castle was built in the 14th century for the Visconti family. At that time it was still called Castrum Porte Jovis.
The next owners, the Sforza family, united with the Visconti’s through marriage and appropriating more and more power, had it restored in 1450.
It was especially Ludovico il Moro (a Sforza) and Beatrice d’Este (of the d’Este family, originally from Verona) who made the castle into what it is today. Thanks to them, one can see works of art by some of the greatest artists of the Renaissance period in the rooms surrounding the courtyard.
The Castello Sforzesco was restored by Luca Beltrami between 1890 and 1905.
Civici Musei Castello Sforzesco
The museums surrounding this large courtyard are collectively known as the Civici Musei Castello Sforzesco. They include the Pinacotheque and the Museo d’Arte Antica. Also on display is Michelangelo’s famous, though unfinished, Rondanini Pietà.
Torre Falconiera and Torre Castellana
The Torre Castellana and the Torre Falconiera are the two square towers on the north-west and north-east sides of the castle. The Torre Castellana was originally the soldiers’ quarters and can be entered from the Rocchetta. The entrance to the Torre Falconiera is at the Corte Ducale. The great hall on the first floor correlated with the wedding chamber of Ludovico il Moro and Beatrice D’Este. This Sala delle Asse, decorated by Leonardo da Vinci, is now part of the Museo di Arte Antica. The tower’s name is explained by the fact that this is where they kept the falcons used for hunting.