The guidebooks will tell you that you have to book in advance and that you won't get long to contemplate Piero della Francesca's fresco cycle The Legend of the true cross". That may be true in high summer, but on a lovely day in the middle of September the church was almost empty and we had as much time as we needed.
Like so much of Italy, Arezzo was hammered during the Second World War - its outer area had to be rebuilt, but the centre is lovely and somehow this church survived the conflict. But not the centuries of humidity that have ruined many of the frescoes in the nave. Fortunately, modern conservation techniques have rescued the Piero cycle in the Bacci chapel, and it is well worth the modest entrance fee to stand close and look up at them. They are more than half a millennium old, yet the colours are still beautiful, and Piero was a master of composition and perspective. This is probably a pilgrimage for renaissance art lovers rather than for the casual tourist. The architecture of the church itself is quite simple, especially if you put it up against the Duomo in Siena , and entry to the main part is free. No photography, by the way.
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