We were so excited to start our holiday with a day exploring Florence on foot. My friend Pip had wanted to visit for sometime, and although I hadn’t researched what to expect, I knew being in Italy that it would be full of grace and charm. We’d booked a full day tour to immerse ourselves in the history and culture of Florence.

Palazzo Della Signoria, Florence, Italy

River Arno, Florence, Italy

It took approximately an hour to travel from the Queen Victoria to the centre of Florence. Our guide was very knowledgeable and so we had a few Renaissance facts up our sleeves by the time we arrived. We were going to cover the main sights in the historical center as well as having some free time to explore by ourselves. On this visit we didn’t have time to queue for museums or galleries but the time we spent in Florence, certainly gave us enough of a feel and appreciation for this fabulous Italian gem.

River Arno, Florence, Italy  Florence, Italy Florence, Italy

The first thing which struck us were the narrow streets filled with buildings covered in shutters and ornate lamps.

Florence, Italy Florence, Italy Being August we were in the main tourist season and so it was extremely busy. It was one of the hottest days of the summer, at 41 degrees, with all of the tourists it made it even hotter.

Florence, Italy Florence, Italy

We made our way to Duomo, the Cathedral of Florence. We approached the side of the building as as we got near the magnificent dome started to reveal itself.

Florence, Italy

Duomo, the Cathedral of Florence, Florence, Italy

Duomo, the Cathedral of Florence, Florence, Italy Duomo, the Cathedral of Florence, Florence, Italy Duomo, the Cathedral of Florence, Florence, Italy Duomo, the Cathedral of Florence, Florence, Italy Duomo, the Cathedral of Florence, Florence, Italy Duomo, the Cathedral of Florence, Florence, Italy

While standing at the front of the cathedral behind us was the Cathedral’s Baptistry which is one of the oldest buildings in Florence. The gilded bronze doors took 21 years to complete and Michaelangelo referred to them as the Gates of Paradise. When we visited work was being undertaken on the Baptistry and it was a shame that we couldn’t go inside.

Duomo, the Cathedral of Florence and Cathedral of Florence Baptistry, Florence, Italy

Duomo, the Cathedral of Florence and Cathedral of Florence Baptistry, Florence, Italy

Cathedral of Florence Baptistry door, Florence, Italy

Our next stop was the Ponte Vecchio, enroute we passed many buildings with coats of arms, churches, museums and at the Piazza Della Republica a wonderful carousel. There were also a few modern accompaniments.

balcony in Florence, Italy

Florence, Italy

Florence, Italy

Piazza Della Republica, Florence, Italy

Piazza Della Republica, Florence, Italy

Florence, Italy

Around the Ponte Vecchio was extremely busy but it is certainly worth being a little patient.

Florence, Italy

The Ponte Vecchio is the oldest bridge in Florence.

Ponte Vecchio, Florence, Italy

Ponte Vecchio, Florence, ItalyThe views down the River Arno, from the Ponte Vecchio, were glorious.

River Arno, Florence, Italy

River Arno, Florence, Italy

River Arno, Florence, Italy

In the opposite direction, from the Ponte Vecchio, is the Ponte Santa Trinita. On the day we visited the light on this bridge gave wonderful reflections in the River Arno.

Ponte Santa Trinita, Florence, Italy

Ponte Santa Trinita, Florence, Italy

We made our way through the Accdemia Gallery into the Palazzo Della Signoria.

Accdemia Gallery, Florence, Italy

Palazzo Della Signoria, Florence, Italy  In the Palazzo Della Signoria we found the Palazzo Vecchio, the town hall, and a copy of Michelangelo’s David.

Palazzo Vecchio, Florence, ItalyPalazzo Della Signoria, Florence, Italy There was also a 16th century fountain of Neptune.

16th century fountain of Neptune, Florence, Italy 16th century fountain of Neptune, Florence, Italy 16th century fountain of Neptune, Florence, Italy

16th century fountain of Neptune, Florence, Italy

As well as an equestrian statue of Cosimo-I-de-Medici.

equestrian statue of Cosimo-I-de-Medici, Florence, Italy

After immersing ourselves with cultural facts from our guide, it was time to explore ourselves. After a light lunch to re-fuel and rest our feet we made our way back to the Ponte Vecchio. We walked down the side of the River Arno to the Ponte Santa Trinita and looked back on the Ponte Vecchio.

Ponte Vecchio, Florence, Italy

Ponte Santa Trinita, Florence, Italy

Ponte Santa Trinita, Florence, Italy

 

River Arno, Florence, Italy

Ponte Santa Trinita, Florence, Italy

Ponte Santa Trinita, Florence, Italy

 

We took a wander into the Piazza Santa Trinita, which compared to the centre of Florence was lovely and peaceful.

Piazza Santa Trinita, Florence, Italy

Piazza Santa Trinita, Florence, Italy

Piazza Santa Trinita, Florence, Italy

Piazza Santa Trinita, Florence, Italy

We wanted to have another look at the Palazzo Della Signoria to see the Loggia dei Lanzi, a gallery of statues, which included Medici lions, and a bronze statue of Perseus, before we left Florence. It seemed everyone else had the same idea.

Gallery of statues, Loggia dei Lanzi, Florence, Italy

Medici lions in the gallery of statues, Loggia dei Lanzi, Florence, Italy

Medici lions in the gallery of statues, Loggia dei Lanzi, Florence, Italy

Bronze statue of Perseus in the gallery of statues, Loggia dei Lanzi, Florence, Italy

Loggia dei Lanzi, a gallery of statues, Florence, Italy

We’d really enjoyed our time exploring Florence on foot. Before we left to return to the Queen Victoria, there was just one last thing to do and that was sample the gelato.

Gelato, Florence, Italy

We both agreed we’d like to come back for a long weekend to explore more.

Glamour in the County in Florence, Italy
Have you been to Florence? What was your favourite place?

 


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