Florence is renown for its immense artistic and historical heritage that dwells in its many museums and galleries. They come in all shapes and sizes and whatever the content, they don’t fail to impress. Plunging into exploration of Florentine museums is one of the best things to do in Florence and explore the soul of the city. In particular, the Uffizi and Accademia Galleries are no secrets to its visitors. Despite being “too touristy,” these classics shouldn’t miss on your itinerary. After all, how can you say you were in Florence if you did not make a date with Michelangelo’s David or laying your eyes on Botticelli’s The Birth of Venus? However, there are many more museums to explore beyond the two obvious choices such as the Bargello Museum full of sculptures; Palazzo Davanzati with a glimpse into the quotidian life of Florentine rich or the San Lorenzo church and Medici Chapel!
The skyline of Florence simply wouldn’t be the same without the outline of the imposing egg-shaped Duomo. The dome is by far the most known part of the Florence’s Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Flower as well as one of the top sites in Florence. If 463 steps and tight spaces don’t discourage you, clamber up inside to enjoy a great view of the city from the dome lantern at the very top. It’s the highest point in central Florence. Plus, the climb allows you to peek into the internal structure of the dome and reveals its architectural genius. If you’re not entirely out of your breath yet, make your way up the adjacent Giotto’s Campanile (bell tower). It provides a spectacular, close-up view of the Duomo as well as Florence. Don’t forget to reserve the fast-track access to avoid hours of queuing! When in doubt about what to do in Florence in a day, Duomo is the answer!
One of the best ways to explore Florence is to hop on a bike and ride down the narrow lanes and crooked streets that wind through some of its picturesque neighborhoods. It gives you much more freedom than a car while expanding your reach of accessible sites. Since traffic in Florence city center is strictly regulated, it’s incredibly cycle-friendly! Hence, in one afternoon, you can gain an excellent overview what to visit in Florence. You can either rent a bike from one of the many rental stands outside the train station or sign up a guided bike tour. When renting a bike on your own, make sure not to miss out on Porta Romana, Poggio Imperiale, Piazza della Signoria and Piazzale Michelangelo. However, if you don’t want to spend time checking a map or prefer to have a bit of information about what you see, sign up for one of the fun and exciting bike tours in Florence! You are in for a great deal of fun.
You’re in the birthplace of Gelato! What do you mean you need ideas for what to do in Florence! Here, the creamy confection reigns supreme. And, in the city center, you can hardly move without falling over into a place that’s serving it up in cones or cups. Why not head out on a self-guided gelato tour? You can sample your way through some of the best in the city before you decide which you think offers up the tastiest scoop. Or, if you want some guidance, look into gelato tours, there are heaps of them. These will take you to the city’s top spots. Places that make gelato that forgoes the chocolate and vanilla and enters the exciting territory of flavors like mango, kiwi, and pineapple. Once you’ve had your fill, if that’s even possible, consider trying your hand at making the stuff yourself. Gelato classes will introduce you to the basics of whipping up a batch yourself. The best part, you get to eat it when you're done!
Coming to Tuscany without devoting a respectable amount of your time to appreciating its culinary gifts is a crime against… your taste buds! Old San Lorenzo market offers you an excellent opportunity to unleash your cravings. So, whether you’re looking for a simple pastime, Tuscan meal, ocal ingredients or a just souvenir to bring home, this is the place to be. San Lorenzo (also Mercato Centrale) sits in a two-story building. The ground floor offers fresh produce. Here, fishmongers, butchers, fruit and vegetable vendors and specialty shops offer local meats, cheeses, olive oils, and more. The second floor, on the other hand, serves as a Gourmet food court divided into twelve individual sections, each fully dedicated to a single Italian specialty. There’re gelato and chocolate stalls, Chianti wine tall, pizza and pasta stall, the meat stall, the fruit and veggie stall, and the list goes on! Everything prepared in front of your eyes!
Florence is the capital of Tuscany, a region boasting with rolling hills embroidered with green vineyards and rich, sumptuous wines. Hence, if you are wondering what to do in Florence besides admiring art and history, wine is the answer. Tuscany is bound to teach you how to experience wine in all its glory. There are several different ways you go about getting to know this potion of gods. You can take part in a decadent wine tasting experience in one of Florence’s traditional wine shops or restaurants; Follow the wine trails around the regions discovering its tastes bit by bit; Visit an authentic winery or estate surrounded vineyards which will not only introduce you to the flavors but also to the intricacies of winemaking process. Learning more about wine in Florence is a way to dig deeper into the history of the region. In fact, it lets you explore its relationship with land, climate, and nature. Every sip contains a story.
In a few short centuries, a small Roman settlement became a busy commercial center. However, the 10th century is when things really started to happen for Florence. The city was on a straight upward trajectory to success, opening its doors to artistic activities. For instance, in 1252, minted its own gold currency (florin). Eventually, it became a powerful banking center with Florentine banks all over Europe. The puppet master behind it all was the Medici banking family whose members were also passionate patrons of art.