Florence, Italy

Florence was the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance. Politically, economically, and culturally it was the most important city in Europe for around 250 years; from some time b... more

Florence, Italy

Florence was the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance. Politically, economically, and culturally it was the most important city in Europe for around 250 years; from some time before 1300 until the early 1500s.

Florence is filled with many churches stuffed with some of the finest art in the world: San Miniato al Monte, San Lorenzo, Santa Maria Novella, Santa Trinita, the Brancacci Chapel at Santa Maria della Carmine, Santa Croce, Santo Spirito, SS Annunziata, Ognissanti, and more.

Then there are the art galleries. The Uffizi and the Pitti Palace are two of the most famous picture galleries in the world. But the heart and soul of Florence are in the two superb collections of sculpture, the Bargello and the Museum of the Works of the Duomo. They are filled with the brilliant, revolutionary creations of Donatello, Verrochio, Desiderio da Settignano, Michelangelo, and so many other masterpieces that create a body of work unique in the world. And, of course, there is the Accademia, with Michelangelo's David, perhaps the most well-known work of art anywhere, plus the superb, unfinished prisoners and slaves Michelangelo worked on for the tomb of Pope Julius II.

In all, Florence has something over 80 museums. Among those at the top of most lists are the City hall, the Palazzo della Signoria (aka Palazzo Vecchio), a wonderful building with magnificent rooms and some great art; the Archeological Museum, the Museum of the History of Science, the Palazzo Davanzatti, the Stibbert Museum, St. Marks, the Medici Chapels, the Museum of the Works of Santa Croce, the Museum of the Cloister of Santa Maria Novella, the Zoological Museum ("La Specola"), the Bardini, and the Museo Horne. There is also a wonderful collection of works by the modern sculptor, Marino Marini, in a museum named after him. If you are interested in photography, you should not miss the superb collection of works by the early photographers, the Alinari brothers. The magnificent Strozzi Palace is the site of many special exhibits

To get a great overview of the city, you have plenty of choices: climb the dome of the Cathdral or Giotto's Bell Tower which is much easier or head for Piazzale Michelangelo a large parking lot on the hillside just south of the center of town, or climb a bit further to the church of San Miniato al Monte, a sublime 11th century masterpiece, with superb Renaissance scultpures. At vespers, the monks add to the beauty with chants.

Great places to walk include along the Arno and across any of its bridges; through narrow, medieval back streets in the Santa Croce area; and in the Oltr'Arno - on the south side of the river, in many ways like Rome's Trastevere or Paris's Left Bank - but far, far smaller. There are also superb shopping streets, such as the Via Tornabuoni, the Via del Parione, and the Via Maggio.

Florence's food can be as much of a treat to the palate as the art is a treat to the eye. There is good food for any price range, from fine restaurants to take out food from window stands. The best price/quality ratio you will find outside the historical center where normal Italians go to eat. The worst ratio is probably in the neighbourhood of Mercato di San Lorenzo where there are a lot of tourist restaurants, while many of the best restaurants in the city are found in the Santa Croce district. In some, requests for pizza may be met with a rebuff. For local pizza look for small shops near the Duomo.

Places near Florence

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Florence Links

  The formula for success of Trattoria Da Giorgio is a cocktail   of passion and creativity, where each family contributes to the outstanding performance of the room.  From Trattoria Da Giorgio can enjoy classic and well made ​​based on high qua...

Dolce Vita is a trendy locale with music, happy hour and gorgeous people. Opened in 1985, has been able to innovate the nightlife in Florence.

A club that is a full of life every night of the week. Located in the near Piazza Strozzi on Via Sassetti, the doors open around 11pm. The interior of the club is full of mirrors, spinning disco balls and pumping music all night long. 

Things do to in Florence

  The Museum has a remarkable collection of sculpture and works of art. It occupies an impressive building built for the Capitano del Popolo in the mid-13th century, which later became the seat of the Podestà and Council of Justice.  Since 1...

  The Museum is incorporated in the vast complex of the basilica of San Lorenzo which, being the parish church of the Medici family, was particularly richly decorated. It is here that members of the family were buried from the mid-15th century o...

The Pitti Palace, which was formerly the residence of the grand-dukes of Tuscany and later of the King of Italy, now houses several important collections of paintings and sculpture, works of art, porcelain and a costume gallery, besides providing a ...

This grand palace was built by the Strozzi family in 1489. After much consultation with Lorenzo de Medici, the Strozzis decided to build a structure much larger than the Medici residence. In the center of Florence, this family built the largest Rena...

  Gucci Museo is situated in the heart of Florence, an homage to the city where Gucci’s story began. It was here in 1921 that Guccio Gucci founded the company which bore his name and which would go on to become a global powerhouse whose indisput...

  The Gallery is particularly famous for its sculptures by Michelangelo: the Prisoners, the St.Matthew and, especially, the statue of David which was transferred here, to the specially designed tribune, from Piazza della Signoria in 1873.  I...

Museo dell'Opera del Duomo was founded to house the sculptures and artworks from the Duomo for restoration and preservation from the elements of the city. This museum exists mainly to house the sculptures removed from the niches and doors of the Duo...

  This is one of the most famous museums of paintings and sculpture in the world. Its collection of Primitive and Renaissance paintings comprises several universally acclaimed masterpieces of all time, including works by Giotto, Simone Martini, ...

Palazzo della Signoria, better known as Palazzo Vecchio, has been the symbol of the civic power of  Florence for over seven centuries. Built between the end of the thirteenth century and the beginning of the fourteenth to house the city’s supreme go...

The museum’s footwear collection documents the entire span of Salvatore Ferragamo’s career, from his return to Italy in 1927 to 1960 the year he died. It highlights his technical and artistic skills which, through his color choices, the creativity o...

Florence Nightlife

Dolce Vita is a trendy locale with music, happy hour and gorgeous people. Opened in 1985, has been able to innovate the nightlife in Florence.

A club that is a full of life every night of the week. Located in the near Piazza Strozzi on Via Sassetti, the doors open around 11pm. The interior of the club is full of mirrors, spinning disco balls and pumping music all night long. 

Florence Dining

  The formula for success of Trattoria Da Giorgio is a cocktail   of passion and creativity, where each family contributes to the outstanding performance of the room.  From Trattoria Da Giorgio can enjoy classic and well made ​​based on high qua...