The Cathedral of Pavia, founded in the 15th century, is an important Renaissance building, recognizable by its octagonal masonry dome, one of the largest in Italy. The construction of the cathedral began in 1488 on the site of the two pre-existing Romanesque cathedrals. The cathedral was not completed until the 1930s, with the construction in 1930-33 of the two arms of the transept, built according to the original 16th-century plans. A 78 m high bell tower (the Torre Civica) originally flanked the cathedral. Mentioned as early as 1330 and enlarged in 1583, it collapsed in 1989. Its remains are still visible on the left side of the cathedral.
The Basilica of San Michele Maggiore dates back to the 11th and 12th centuries and is one of the most beautiful churches in the Lombard Romanesque style. A previous building having been destroyed by fire in 1004, the construction of the present basilica began towards the end of the 11th century and was certainly completed in 1155, with an interruption due to the great earthquake of 1117. San Michele stands out from the other churches in the city for its intensive use, both for its structure and for its decorations, of fragile ochre-coloured sandstone instead of terracotta. The façade is decorated with a rich repertoire of beautiful sandstone sculptures.
The Basilica of San Pietro in Ciel d'Oro was built at the beginning of the 8th century, in the middle of the Lombard era and is called St. Peter in the Golden Sky because of its golden ceilings. The church was reconsecrated by Pope Innocent II in 1132 after major renovations in Romanesque style. Having fallen into a state of abandonment and ruin after the Napoleonic period, the basilica was restored and partially rebuilt between 1875 and 1899.