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Saint Michael’s Abbey

  • Address
    Via alla Sacra 14, Sant’Ambrogio di Torino, Italy
  • Web
  • Visiting Hours
    From November to February, from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Rest of the year: from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
  • What to see
    11th century abbey, Staircase of the Dead


Also known as Sacra di San Michele, 11th century abbey built by a monk particularly devoted to St Michael, tradition affirms that the materials to build the first church appeared miraculously on the top of the mountain. The Church is it Romanesque style and it was built in the 11th century. The church has a nave and two aisles, and features elements of both Romanesque and Gothic style.

Particularly interesting is the Scalone dei Morti (“Stairway of the Dead”), a staircase flanked by arches, niches and tombs in which, until recent times, skeletons of dead monks were exposed. At the top of the almost 250 steps is the marble Porta dello Zodiaco, a masterwork of 12th century sculpture. The complex includes the ruins of the 12th-15th centuries monastery. The site is known to have inspired the novel The Name of The Rose by Italian writer Umberto Eco.

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