Florence Travel Guide
A city synonymous with the Renaissance and possessing every ingredient to make up the archetypal Tuscan city, Florence is unique and amazing. If Dante were to return to his native Florence today, he wouldn’t see too much difference from the days when he lived in there back in the 13th century. Take away the odd modern addition and a few thousand tourists and you still have the medieval city and all of the magic encapsulated within it. Due to it’s modest size, Florence is incredibly easy to see in a short space of time. All of the sights are within walking distance of each other and the city’s narrow streets hug the visitor protectively as they weave from one stunning piazza to another.
The major landmark symbol of Florence is the dusky orange dome of Santa Maria del Fiore which towers above the city. Still the tallest building in the city after over 500yrs, the Duomo designed by Brunelleschi is the place to visit. The interior is elaborately beautiful with intricate marble pavements, works of art and frescoes of the Last Judgement by Vasari decorating the inside of the Dome. It is also well worth taking a trip up the exquisite 85m high Campanile for fabulous views across the city. A stone’s throw from the Duomo is the Piazza della Signoria immortalised by a fainting Helena Bonham-Carter in ‘Room with a View’, and the very piazza where Michaelangelo’s 4.34 m high David was originally placed. The original can now be found in the Accademia, although a perfect copy stands in the original spot in front of the Palazzo Vecchio, the Florentine town hall and draws massive crowds. Another main tourist attraction is the Ponte Vecchio - the oldest bridge in city, built in 1345 that stretches out across the Arno as one of Florence’s key sights. The bridge is crammed with jewellers and antique shops all along the bridge, the prices are slightly higher than those in the surrounding area, so if you’re not up to abusing the old credit card simply enjoy the fabulous views up and down the hazily romantic Arno. Florence is chock full of culture, from the Renaissance Art packed Uffizi Gallery (the greatest art gallery in Italy) to the huge Palazzo Pitti with it’s ornately decorated rooms and chambers and the beautiful Boboli Gardens. Florence is one of those lucky places that is blessed with fantastic architecture, atmosphere, history and location and is easily one of Italy’s brightest stars.
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