Civic Museum of Ancient Art (Museo Civico di Arte Antica) Tours
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Among the most striking buildings on Turin’s Piazza Castello, Palazzo Madama is half fortified medieval castle and half sumptuous baroque palace. The building now houses the city’s Civic Museum of Ancient Art (Museo Civico di Arte Antica), with a sprawling collection spanning from the Roman era to the 18th century.
A stop at the palazzo is a highlight of private or small-group Turin walking tours and one of the attractions included in the Royal Card pass, along with the Royal Palace and Royal Church of San Lorenzo. From castle to palace to the first seat of the Italian parliament, Palazzo Madama is home to one of the city’s most important museums.
The Civic Museum of Ancient Art has a small Roman collection, continuing through medieval stonework to Renaissance art in the ornate baroque galleries. Explore one of Italy's largest collections of decorative arts, with examples of precious Meissen porcelain, Delftware, and fine embroidered textiles. The highlight of the collection is Antonello da Messina’s glorious 1475 Portrait of a Man. Palazzo Madama also includes a Roman gate and foundations, medieval towers, and a series of Renaissance courtyards and apartments.
Things to Know Before You Go
- The Civic Museum of Ancient Art offers lockers to store large bags and backpacks that cannot be brought inside.
- Architecture enthusiasts will be fascinated by the various styles represented in the vast palace, while art aficionados will appreciate the vast and eclectic collection of artworks.
- Photography is allowed inside the museum.
- The palace and museum are fully accessible to wheelchairs.
How to Get There
Palazzo Madama is located on Piazza Castello in the heart of historic Turin, a short walk from the Porta Nuova train station and many of the city’s most famous attractions.
When to Get There
Open every day except Tuesdays, the Civic Museum of Ancient Art offers a break from the summer heat or winter cold at any hour. Palazzo Madama often holds special exhibitions, so check the schedule before visiting.
The History and Architecture of Palazzo Madama
Palazzo Madama has the appearance of two buildings uneasily glued together. It was originally built as a fortified castle by the ruling house of Savoy in the 14th century with a medieval facade looking eastward. The later, ornate baroque addition faces west and was added by architect Filippo Juvarra in the early 18th century at the request of Marie Jeanne of Savoy, for whom the palace is named. Juvarra was appointed court architect by the Savoy dynasty and went on to design many of Turin’s glamorous arcades.
Address: Piazza Castello, Torino 10122, Italy
3 Tours and Activities to Experience Civic Museum of Ancient Art (Museo Civico di Arte Antica)
Soak in all that Turin and Italy's Piedmont Region have to offer with a 2-, 3-, or 5-day sightseeing pass. Each pass gets you free or discounted admission to upwards of 200 of the area's galleries, museums, monuments and more. In addition you'll receive reduced ticket entry on the main tourist services of Tourin: City SighSeeing open bus, panoramic lift in the Mole Antonelliana, boats on river Po, Sassi - Superga rack tramway, and the Venaria Express shuttle bus. It's an easy and economical way to explore.
Turin and Piedmont are home to some of Italy’s finest royal residences, but the entry fees are sometimes high. With this Royal Card in your pocket, save on transport and entry fees at top attractions including the Castello de La Mandria, the Palazzo Madama, and the Villa della Regina. With entry discounts at some of Italy’s finest UNESCO–listed royal residences—plus savings on e-bike, open-top bus, and taxi tours—explore Italy’s royal history and save on travel along the way.
Turin’s Baroque buildings, lively piazzas, and tree-lined boulevards are best explored on foot, and this private 2-hour walking tour lets you see the city at your own pace. Admire landmarks such as San Lorenzo Church, Teatro Regio, and Palazzo Reale; browse the shops along Via Roma; and soak up the atmosphere in Piazza San Carlo.
Frequently Asked Questions
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