I may be biased, because this is my favourite city I have ever visited, but every time I am amazed at the ability of Florence to cling to its otherworldly charm no matter the amount of tourists crowding it’s streets and museums. No matter how busy the streets are, I can guarantee you will find a hidden gem or quiet spot to relax.
The first time I visited was late March-early May and I would highly recommend that time as compared to the second time when I visited in July, when you will melt and fry yourself into the cobblestone streets… and this is coming from someone who loves hot weather. The slightly cooler weather of spring lets you enjoy wandering the streets more than the blistering heat of summer.
Of course while you’re here you need to visit
- Ponte Vecchio, the medieval stone bridge over the Arno River, lined with jewellery shops and another spot to sneak your love locks. Did you know: It was the only bridge that the fleeing Germans did not destroy in World War II
- The Duomo di Firenze, an iconic symbol of Florence. Rising over the city with its terracotta tiled glory, giving the cathedral an imposing and dominating view on the horizon. Make sure you have enough time to spend waiting in line to climb to the top and get killer 360 degree views of the city. Did you know: there are 2 layers to the dome and to get to the top you climb on small stairs in between the layers
- Everywhere you turn there is a museum or remnants of amazing Renaissance works of art and architecture through the town square and streets.
- The Galleria dell’Accademia boasts Michelangelo’s David
- The Uffizi Gallery has da Vinci and Botticelli as well as a large collection of Roman and Greek sculptures
- and those are just 2 of the big names, there are plenty of smaller galleries boasting their own impressive works, some for less than 5 euro entrance fees. Grab a guided tour or headset if you want to know the history or walk around by yourself and be lost in the works of art
- Palazzo Pitti and the Boboli Gardens to escape the town and get lost in the expansive gardens, claiming to be one of the greatest open air museums and boasting spectacular “green architecture” and honestly offers some shade from the sun under century old oaks. Try and find as many hidden sculptures and fountains as you can. One entrance pass grants you access to the museums, galleries, and gardens on the grounds.
Where to stay:
- Budget: Academy Hostel is where I stayed, central to pretty much everything its a great place to stay, especially for about $30CA a night
- Plus Florence Hostel is another great option (its got a Cuban bar!) for slightly more, at about $58CA
Where to eat:
- Because you need to have a Florentine steak at least once in your life and Osteria Vini e Vecchi Sapori or La Bottega Del Buon Caffe are both great, cosy, local spots.
- or check out Enoteca Pitti Gola e Cantina for a great wine bar
Have a great Monday everyone,