That’s how I know it now, as the Renaissance city.
And it makes sense, once you take the Renaissance tour and hear the amazing history of Firenze. When I say amazing, I don’t mean it was all nice but it was definitely colorful and had a profound impact on the world at large forever (Firenze was once the economic center of the world). And that history wouldn’t have happened without the influence of the Medici family. I knew about them but I really wasn’t aware of the enormity of their legacy.
I am not going to go into detail regarding that, if you’re ever in Florence, you can take the tour and learn for yourself (my guide was Silvie and as a side note, she sings amazingly).
I want to write so many things about my three days there and not make it too long but give you as many highlights as possible.
I’ll just do a quick run-through of what stands out the most in my mind.
Be ready for a horde of tourists. Going to all the famous Florentine places like the Academy, the Dome and the Pitti palace. The best thing you can do for those is book tickets online and be there when you’re supposed to be. I didn’t know my timetable so didn’t do that and only saw those places from the outside.
Which didn’t bother me that much because I saw many other places from the inside and looking back, you can’t choose wrong with so many interesting places to visit.
Speaking of those places, ticket to any of them is between 8-10 Euros.
My selection of churches were Basilica San Marco (and the accompanying museum), Santa Croce, and Santa Maria Novella. Of the three, San Marco is the least interesting and the smallest but has a certain coziness (it actually got me to stay and listen to Italian mass as the girl playing the organ did it so lovely, and then sang lovely as well).
Santa Croce is where many famous people are buried (Galileo, Machiavelli, Dante…) but it’s the worth the visit for the beauty of the place itself. Like Santa Maria Novella as well.
Which brings me to Santa Maria Novella Profumo which definitely deserves a post of its own (and is getting one). I want to say go there if you’re in Florence but be warned, money just flies out of your hands there.
My last day in Florence was the best one even though I walked 21 km. I still feel that in my legs. 😀
Anyway, a little warning, even though the Gardens of Boboli are beautiful and worth the visit, nobody tells you they are on a hill. A steep hill. So, if you plan on walking through most of the garden, be aware it’s a serious exercise. Which is why I think everyone at Palazzo Pitti was probably fit.
Which brings me to the next hilly destination – Piazzale Michelangelo. Amazing view, quite breathtaking to get there. 😉
The last two places of my last day just plain made me happy. Climbing the Tower of Palazzo Vecchio and visiting the museum there and then visiting this little wine shop/wine tasting place. The owner is very knowledgeable and will do her best to offer you wine to taste according to your preference. I was amazed by the wines she gave me to try. I definitely recommend visiting her place – Antica Bottega A.D. 1264.
It’s funny how the first two days I only walked through the flat part of the city and then left the last day for all the climbing. 🙂
Sometimes I don’t think things through. 😉 But at least I have fun. I loved my time in Florence. 🙂