The Duomo (the Duomo is the main cathedral building of the town or city) is Florence's Cathedral. It is built in the shape of a cross and has a large drum-shaped area at the center where the dome was built on top of the structure. Filippo Brunelleschi was the architect chosen to build the dome. His design was selected over the submission by Lorenzo Ghiberti. Brunelleschi's design was very challenging, in that the dome would be constructed in an octagonal shape and it would be made entirely of brick and stone. No wooden support structure would be built as a framework and no scaffolding would be used. Special machinery to lift the stone had to be devised, because nothing existed to fill that need.
Brunelleschi was honored for his incredible work by being buried in the cathedral. The Duomo is a very visible landmark as you move around Florence. The dome can often be seen in the distance, giving you a handy reference point. We walked from our hotel to the Duomo and then to the Uffizi Gallery. In the evening, this is a pleasant stroll and gives you time to take in the sights and sounds of the city.