Buongiorno! Are you looking for Things to See and Do in Florence? I will share some tips and ideas on how you can maximize your time based on our coach tour in Florence. For me, one day would not be enough to experience the real Florence. You'll need at least a couple of days to fully enjoy the city, visit most museums and neighborhoods and to really get the taste of the city, the vibes that locals breathe everyday! With its iconic Renaissance masterpieces and stunning architecture, Florence is rightly one of the most-visited cities in Italy. Florence is compact and walkable, making it easy to wander around and find awesome things to see and do!
After our short trip to Pisa, we went straight to Florence. We arrive late in the afternoon which only give us a few hours to tour the city at night. At the hotel, we were given only half an hour to drop all our things before we headed to our city tour. A separate tour guide was assigned to us who gave us a brief history on the most famous attraction of Florence. It also help us discover the marvels of the cradle of Renaissance beyond the simple facts and dates. We were able to see the amazing towers and palaces, Cathedral and Churches, bridges and river while learning about the history, art and social factors behind it.
Piazza del Duomo, situated in the heart of Florence, is surrounded by beautiful buildings and breathtaking artwork. It has many restaurants and shops around, so it is an amazing place to spend some time after busy day of sightseeing. The city center is so small that you can easily walk to dinner, then out to have gelato, then for a walk around the main sights before going back to your room. Historic buildings are lit, making for dramatic views, especially of the Palazzo Vecchio.
The statue of David created a lot of confusion as a lot of visitors think you can see it right in the middle of the square. Well, I'm sorry to disappoint you, but that is just a copy of the famous Michaelangelo’s work. The real David is standing inside in the Accademia di Belle Arte.
Leather is another of Florence’s specialities and the best place to barter for a bargain is the Piazza Mercato. Also, there is a bronze fountain representing a life-size wild boar, called Porcellino. According to the popular tradition, tossing a coin in the fountain brings fortune.
Pasta is the word when it comes to lunch in Italy, and to resist is futile! To enjoy a regional wine with fine Tuscan cuisine is an experience not to be missed! We had a Tuscan feast for dinner and it was extremely extraordinary. We tasted the authentic Tuscan cuisine. A full meal which includes starter, main course and dessert was served the Tuscan way. 😀 There are plenty cheaper options that will still give you the opportunity to taste high-quality local food. It doesn't matter much where you choose to eat as long as you will always accompany the food with a glass of Chianti wine.
One of the best things in Florence is the Gelato. Many people believe, and I am one of them, that Florence has the best Gelato in the world. It may not be free, but it is inexpensive and it is worth every Euro that it costs. Enjoying great food and excellent wine in Florence is not difficult at all! Just walk down at any street in Florence and select a trattoria or restaurant in Florence that seems appealing and you'll surely eat a fine meal!
You can tour around and see the highlights in one day. But for first time visitors I think three to five days is better, giving you time to also check out the city’s world renowned museums and dine on as much Tuscan cuisine as possible. As beautiful and remarkable as Florence is most of the year, it is hot and crowded in the summer. I recommend to visit Florence in the fall, spring, or winter when you can enjoy all that the city has to offer with less tourist. 😉
Aside from sightseeing and visiting the main museums and churches, there are obviously lots of other things to do in Florence. You could try out a walking tour of specific areas of the city with a guide or go on a shopping spree! Eat out at great restaurants, try out all the gelato flavors!
Traveling on foot is what I recommend. You'll discover its main squares and streets and by bringing its unique Medieval and Renaissance heritage to life. Florence has many treasures to offer and the most beautiful one? You don't have to spend a dime to enjoy many of them! You just need to be adventurous and be ready in discovering the rich culture of Florence. 😀
Feel free to look at my travel photos above. If you have any suggestions for things to see and do in Florence, please comment below! 😀