The Santa Maria Assunta Cathedral with its magnificent Gothic façade is, of course, by far the most famous church in Orvieto. However, there are a number of other churches in the city, both in and outside the historical center, that are worth a visit.
Orvieto’s Cathedral is world famous for its beautiful, richly decorated facade and for the frescoes in the Cappella Nuova painted by Luca Signorelli. It was Pope Niccoló IV himself who laid the foundation stone in 1290. Over 20 artists contributed to the Gothic façade of the church.
The Church of St. Andrew is located next to the Palazzo Comunale, at the point where Corso Cavour meets Piazza della Repubblica. The official name of the church is Chiesa dei Santi Andrea e Bartolomeo. Before the Duomo was built, this 6th century early Christian basilica was the most important church in the city.
San Giovenale Church
The San Giovenale Church is located in the medieval quarter of the city. It stands on the western edge of the historical centre and offers a wonderful view of the valley of the river Paglia. The church is characterised by a sober façade and an equally unadorned interior. The main attraction is the 15th century Madonna del Corso.
San Francesco Church
The San Francesco Church, on the south side of the rock on which Orvieto is built, is one of the city’s oldest churches. The architect Ippolito Scalza, who is omnipresent in Orvieto, is buried in this church, but the main attraction is a fresco cycle by Pietro di Puccio.
San Domenico Church
The San Domenico Church and its cloister are located in Piazza XXIX Marzo. A large part of the church was destroyed during the Fascist period. The absolute highlight of the church is the funerary monument for Cardinal de Braye designed by Arnolfo di Cambio in the 13th century. The Cappella Petrucci is also worth a look.
Buon Gesú Church
The Buon Gesú Church was built between 1618 and 1637, next to an already existing Franciscan nunnery. During its construction, the Sant’Onofrio Church was incorporated into the convent to serve as a private chapel for the nuns. The convent was banned at the time of the Napoleonic rule, but later reopened.
Santa Maria dei Servi Church
The Santa Maria dei Servi Church is located in the eastern part of the historical centre of the town. Since there used to be a church dedicated to San Martino nearby, it is also called the Parocchia di San Martino. The former San Martino Church had to be demolished when the Rocca Albernoz was built.
The Capuchin Friars got this monastery in 1551, after which they built a church. In 1866, the order was banned, but later the friars were allowed to return. In 1987, they moved back in, after it had been private property for a while. The church was rededicated to San Crispino di Viterbo, who lived there in the first half of the 18th century. The Capuchin Monastery stands on a hill outside Orvieto itself.
Oratorio della Misericordia
The Oratorio della Misericordia stands next to the Sant’Agnese Church. It was built after two brotherhoods merged in 1556 to form the Confraternita di San Giovanni Decollato.