Florence is incomparable in terms of beautiful views and historical sites. Most of the wonders of the city will require a day, or even not one, to fully study it. The city, founded in the I century BC. e., just saturated with magnificent cathedrals, chic villas and palazzos, green gardens and other amazing places.
How to create your travel itinerary to get the most out of your life, our guide to attractions with names and a detailed description will tell you.
If this is your first time in Florence:
- 3-day holiday plan in Florence
- How to get to Florence from Rome
- We recommend you take at least one individual excursion to get your bearings in the city and spend your holidays as efficiently as possible.
Cathedral Square (Piazza del Duomo) - a square in the historical center of the city, on which the building of the Cathedral of Florence solemnly rises, surrounded by a bell tower and a baptistery. For a long time this place has caused tourists exclamations of admiration and the purest emotional impulses. Hence it is worth planning the route of your walk around Florence.
Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore
The Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore (La Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore) is listed under number one in the "Top Attractions of Florence" section of any tourist guide to the city. An imposing temple is located in the center of the old city on Prefab Square. From a distance, the building stands out with a high, about 90 m, terracotta dome. The creation of this masterpiece was engaged by Filippo Brunelleschi (Filippo Brunelleschi).
The Duomo is built in accordance with the canons of the Gothic. The carved cladding of the temple made of light-colored marble makes a special impression. The construction of the cathedral continued from 1296 to 1436. During this time, the recognized architectural masters were in charge of the architectural appearance of the building: Arnolfo di Cambio (Arnolfo di Cambio) and Giotto (Giotto di Bondone).
The huge cathedral accommodates 30 thousand parishioners. The interior decoration strikes with its graceful beauty that carries the visitor during the Renaissance. The tall vaulted nave of the Duomo leads to a painted dome, which depicts a picture of the Last Judgment by Giorgio Vasari. The stained glass windows, sculptures, paintings and crypts in which the famous Italians laid back the solemnity of the interior.
Giotto's bell tower
The campanile Giotto (Campanile di Giotto), which is also the Campanile, complements the undeniable beauty of the Duomo. The slender silhouette of the bell tower makes a duet to the dome of the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore. The height of the tower from the foundation to the top of the spire is 85 meters. All this space is lined with colorful marble slabs. Tall windows stretched to the top and exterior decor are the embodiment of Gothic style with a touch of Italian proto-renaissance of the XIV century.
The author of the campaign is the unforgettable Giotto, but most of the construction and finishing works were supervised by Andrea Pisano. The bell tower impresses with its multifaceted decoration - expertly executed bas-reliefs, carved medallions by Giotto, sculptures by Donatello. Hotel mention is a breathtaking view of the city, opening from the heights of an old tower.
Baptistery of San Giovanni
The Baptistery of San Giovanni (Battistero di San Giovanni) is the third element in the architectural complex of the Florence Duomo. The baptismal house first appeared on this site in the 5th century A.D. The modern wide building with an octagonal dome was built in the XII century. The squat "barrel" of the baptismal site stands at the forefront of the cathedral.
The exterior of the baptistery is in harmony with the decor of the rest of the buildings on the Cathedral Square. Guests of the city enthusiastically consider the original design of the South, North and East gate of the building. Biblical engraved bronze paintings adorn the door panels. Inside the baptismal, the most impressive painted dome depicting Jesus, the saints and the Last Judgment.
St. Mark's Square
The small square (Piazza di San Marco), which overlooks the facade of the Basilica of San Marco (Basilica di San Marco) and the monastery of the Order of the Silvestrins. Both buildings date back to the 13th century, however in the 15th century they were reconstructed by the architect Michelozzo di Bartolomeo for Cosimo I.
Museum of San Marco
The Museum of San Marco (Museo Nazionale di San Marco), located in a mission previously owned by the church, has a difficult history. For a long time there was a library in the walls of the former convent of San Marco, which several times passed from the hands of the church to the Medici and vice versa. Finally, the building passed into the ownership of the state in 1866. In just a few years, the church library turned into a national museum.
Of great value to visitors are murals painted on walls and arches in the XIV-XV centuries. The paintings by Fra Beato Angelico, Ghirlandaio, Fra Bartollommeo are filled with faith and piety. Most of the paintings were also painted by novices of the monastery of San Marco and artists close to religion.
Palazzo Medici Riccardi
The Palace of the Medici Riccardi (Palazzo Medici Riccardi) of the 15th century is a kind of demonstration of the strength and affluence of the Medici clan. Located in the center of Florence, the mansion was designed by the family's favorite architect - Michelozzo. The three-story building made of light rusty stone has a nice little courtyard decorated with medieval sculpture and lemon trees.
The interior of the palazzo loudly declares the superiority of the Medici over other influential houses of the XV century. Grandiose ceiling frescoes and paintings are involuntarily breathtaking with their skill and scale. The Chapel of the Magi, dedicated entirely to biblical paintings, is singled out separately.
Palazzo Strozzi - the mansion of the Florentine nobleman Filippo Strozzi - a monumental and expensive building, made according to the canons of the early Renaissance. Externally, the building is a concise three-story palace. The main beauty lies in the courtyard, as well as the interiors of the palazzo. Since the beginning of the 20th century, various cultural events and exhibitions have been taking place in the palace. The center of modern art, located on the second floor of the building, regularly invites foreign exhibitions in the Palazzo Strozzi.
Signoria Square (Piazza della Signoria), which served as a symbol of power during the Florentine state, makes an impressive impression due to the stern castle. Decorated with Renaissance statues: the famous "David" by Michelangelo and the Judith Donatello, it deserves attention.
Palazzo Vecchio - The old palace was built in the 13th century by Arnolfo di Cambio. Since its construction, the building has been used for government needs. The appearance of the palazzo is embodied impregnability and power. The mansion is crowned with a toothed crown, a clock tower rises above the roof. At different times, the priors, the Signora sat in the palace, the Duke of Tuscany, Cosimo I (Cosimo I de Medici), lived.
The Palazzo Vecchio is interesting in the contrast of external and internal design. An elegant courtyard made by Michelozzo (Michelozzo di Bartolomeo) is filled with views of European cities of the XV century. The walls of the palace impress with the grandiose Hall of Five hundred (Salone dei Cinquecento), dedicated to the military successes of Cosimo Medici. In other rooms it is worth paying attention to: coffered ceiling and frescoes of Ghirlandaio (Domenico Ghirlandaio) in the Lily Hall, paintings, sculptures, impressive globe sizes, a collection of old maps.
The Uffizi Galleries (Galleria degli Uffizi) are a 10-minute walk from Signoria Square. It’s easy to make a route to the art gallery on your own, you need to move towards the Arno River. The medieval palace is filled with valuable paintings by Italian, European and Flemish artists. The founders of the art gallery were the Medici, thanks to their connections and welfare, they got real masterpieces.
- Must visit: tour of the Uffizi
Uffizi is proud to present visitors: Botticelli (Sandro Botticelli), Leonardo da Vinci, Paolo Uccello, Raffaello Santi, Tiziano Vecellio and many others.
Ponte Vecchio Bridge
The Ponte Vecchio bridge or the Old Bridge is the most respected ferry across the Arno in the city of Florence. At the same time, it is its main decoration. The bridge was built in the XIV century and has survived to this day in almost unchanged form. By the way, the river and the Old Bridge that spread over it is the next stop of the walking route along Florence after the Uffizi Gallery.
The bridge is original for several reasons: firstly, on both sides of the bridge, houses are located right above the water. Secondly, over the pedestrian arch in the 16th century, the Corridoio Vasariano corridor was built on, which laid a safe path from the Palazzo Vecchio to the Palazzo Pitti.
The Palazzo Pitti is the largest of the palaces that only Florence knew. It was built in the 15th century by the powerful clan of the Medici. The residence of the Italian dukes in modern times has become home to several museums: an art gallery, an exhibition of contemporary art, as well as silver, porcelain, carriage, fashion history and costume.
The austere, lined with a rustic palazzo, inside shines with baroque interiors, painted walls, colorful frescoes, surprisingly thin stucco molding, silk wallpaper and priceless exhibits of the Renaissance.
The Boboli Gardens (Giardino di Boboli) is an emerald pearl that is hidden from the eyes of passers-by by the monolith of the Pitti Palace. And let the main sights of Florence embodied in stone, do not forget about the beauty of Italian nature. The huge park that covered Boboli Hill was laid out in the XVI century and served as a place for walks of the Duke of Tuscan Medici, his family and guests.
The territory of the park has expanded every century, and now the green corner of Florence covers an area of 4.5 hectares. Boboli Gardens are striking in their layout and multifaceted content. Numerous streets and paths cut through dense vegetation. Statues, fountains, grottoes, columns and even an imitation of an ancient amphitheater are skillfully intertwined with fragrant plantings. Traveling in this part of the city is full of unforgettable pleasure and relaxation.
Church of San Lorenzo
The Church of San Lorenzo (Basilica di San Lorenzo) is another Florentine attraction that deserves the prefix "the most." This time we will focus on the most venerable basilica in the city. The early Christian church of the 4th century AD, renovated in the Romanesque style in the 11th century. In the Middle Ages, it was significantly reconstructed by Brunelleschi. In the XV century, the Medici family took patronage of the temple.
The basilica has an impressive interior decoration, including a white and gold coffered ceiling, a painted dome and the work of the best architects of the Renaissance. However, this temple is best known as the resting place of princes from the Medici clan. The last of them is in the sarcophagus in the New Sacristy (sacristy) of the temple.
Church of Santa Croce
The Basilica dedicated to the Holy Cross (Basilica di Santa Croce) is located near the historic center. The construction of the temple began in the last decade of the 13th century. There is a legend that the idea of creating this church belonged to St. Francis himself. The building was repeatedly destroyed and rebuilt with the money of wealthy Florentines. Therefore, in the appearance of the temple there is a mixture of styles: Gothic and proto-Renaissance.
White marble Santa Croce is famous for the fact that its decoration is made up of works by eminent masters: wall paintings and sculptures by Giotto, works by Donatello and Canova (Antonio Canova). Subdued daylight enters the building through large stained-glass windows, and the altar of the church also impresses. Santa Croce occupies a special place thanks to the extensive pantheon of tombs of prominent residents of the city and country. About three hundred tombs are located under the arches of the temple. Of these, the most significant tombs: Niccolo Machiavelli, Dante Alighieri, Galileo Galilei.
The Mall Outlet
The Mall is a huge department store, turned into a paradise for fashionable shopping. Italy is a trendsetter, and one of the indisputable sights of the fashion world is in the suburbs of Florence. Outlet buyers get access to sales and incredible discounts on expensive branded goods: clothes, bags, perfumes, cosmetics, shoes, accessories and much more.