Chiesa di San Bernardino alle Ossa

Chiesa di San Bernardino alle Ossa, Milan

Chiesa di San Bernardino alle Ossa

Chiesa di San Bernardino alle Ossa
4.5
Historic Sites • Churches & Cathedrals
08:00 - 12:00
Monday
08:00 - 12:00
Tuesday
08:00 - 12:00
Wednesday
08:00 - 12:00
Thursday
08:00 - 12:00
Friday
08:00 - 12:00
Saturday
08:00 - 12:00
What is Travellers’ Choice?
Tripadvisor gives a Travellers’ Choice award to accommodations, attractions and restaurants that consistently earn great reviews from travellers and are ranked within the top 10% of properties on Tripadvisor.
Plan your visit
The area
Address
Neighbourhood: Centro Storico
The pulsating core of Milan is in Centro. Duomo Square is enclosed by the gothic cathedral, the historic icon of Milan. However, shopping is what draws most crowds to this area. The classy and versatile Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II with luxury boutiques and high quality restaurants will turn any shopping or lunch expedition into a royal experience. Head to the rooftop of the flagship La Rinascente to enjoy the view of the animated square with a panorama of the Duomo. The Corso Vittorio Emanuele II is the street for high-end shopping. Brands of all kinds and street artists attract the attention of all visitors; while at Via Santa Radegonda 16, Luini Panzerotti is a much appreciated street food shop providing unimaginable culinary experiences. If shopping takes its toll on you, consider visiting Castello Sforzesco, a 15th century castle housing several museums. Those looking to relax can go to Parco Sempione, where nature provides respite from the energy of this dynamic and international city.
How to get there
  • San Babila • 6 min walk
  • Duomo • 8 min walk
Best nearby
We rank these restaurants and attractions by balancing reviews from our members with how close they are to this location.
Restaurants
7,433 within 5 kms
Attractions
1,254 within 5 kms
Popular mentions

4.5
830 reviews
Excellent
436
Very good
330
Average
54
Poor
2
Terrible
8

Stephanie & Anthony
Lincoln, UK519 contributions
Wieed but good
Oct 2020 • Couples
This place was on our list of alternative places we wanted to see and we loved it. Very macabre and sobering experience.
Written 4 October 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Judith F
Yeovil, UK82 contributions
A church with Bones
Feb 2020 • Couples
Church is ptetty so do take some time to have a look at that before going into the Ossarie. The bone room is full of arranged bones. What is there to say and is exactly as the reviews.
Written 9 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Heather R
South Salt Lake, UT64 contributions
A great find
Dec 2019
Just behind the Duomo, a great find for taphophiles (cemetery fans) as the side chapel is constructed of human bones. Eerie and wonderful. The church is a bit worn but very grand, with an amazing array of colored marble. Pity it's not on the tourist bus route - it would be much more popular if people knew about it - maybe that's for the best!
Written 20 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Pau Penise
Verona, Italy3 contributions
Compelling experience
Nov 2019
The ossuary is outwordly. The small sanctuary with high walls coverded with human bones takes you somewhere else. It is cold and there is a unique light smell in it.
I was deffinetly not prepared for that experience.
Worth the visit.
Written 14 December 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Linda N
Washington DC, DC25 contributions
Compelling and sobering
Nov 2019
This is not the big church but the smaller sanctuary in the building on your left as you look at the big church. It is small and quiet and meditative to stare at walls full of bones and skulls of people who lived roughly 900 years ago. It doesn't take long to visit here and it is easily walkable from Duomo. It really makes you think and gives you an opportunity to respect a different era and culture and those departed.
Written 6 December 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Mark
Sheffield, UK461 contributions
Unique
Nov 2019 • Couples
Slightly off the normal tourist routes this was something we were advised to visit.It is a mixture of beauty and the macabre and certainly makes you stop in silence just for a moment.It may not be for everyone, but an interesting experience.
Written 1 December 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Alessandro F
Milan, Italy25,293 contributions
Human skulls and bones
Nov 2019 • Solo
The particular of this church is the inside completely covered by human skulls and bones.
In 1210 when a adjacent cemetery ran out of space a cell was built to recover bones, in 1269 a small church was attached to the room, enlarged in 1679.
After a fire that destroyed it , in 1712 a new bigger church was built, designed by Carl Joseph Merlo , the one that we see now.
Internal with octagonal shape and baroque decorations, beautiful frescoes designed by Sebastian Ricci.
Written 29 November 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Midgetry
Singapore, Singapore124 contributions
Creepy get so satisfying
Sep 2019
It's an ossuary right beside the San Bernardino church.

Entrance is free but a small donation is expected so that the ossuary can be kept running and maintained. I am not sure if this is a touristy place because I don't see many people during my visit which I appreciate. I could sit there for awhile taking it all in.

The ossuary housed the bones or remains from a cemetery where the San Stefano Maggiore was built. So they moved the bones to this ossuary which was then a hospital.

It's really an interesting place to visit. Quite and serene. A place that got you thinking about the lives of these people before they perished.
Written 12 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Drumraine
Ireland218 contributions
Worthy Side Visit
Oct 2019
It seems as though we always find something of interest when we take side streets, in this case a church with very interesting decor in a side chapel. Elegant dome. Peaceful spot. Very unusual history.
Written 3 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

RandRCalifornia
Santa Clarita, CA582 contributions
If you've never seen an ossuary.....
Aug 2019
In reading some of the reviews here - I am struck by the diversity of information. Why so many variations of the story? Maybe that is part of the allure of a "bone chapel". The official site shares information stating that when the nearby Brolo hospital became defunct, they took the bones of the deceased from the nearby cemetery to create the ossuary. The skulls encased above the door are from executed prisoners. Why do this? In reading the reviews I see numerous theories perhaps obtained from a variety of guidebooks. I was at a larger "bone church" in Poland once and the story of the church is on the wall - created by monks - they wanted to show that in death, we are all the same. Rich and poor, beautiful or homely - we are indistinguishable and in the end the same. While the theories abound on this ossuary - I would suggest getting your information from their official website. They also have pamphlets and an area to make a donation as you enter. It certainly is an interesting experience that makes you think more deeply about life.
Written 15 September 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Chiesa di San Bernardino alle Ossa

Chiesa di San Bernardino alle Ossa is open:
  • Mon - Sat 08:00 - 12:00
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