The Top Attractions Of Florence, Tuscany’s Capital, Italy

The Top Attractions Of Florence, Tuscany’s Capital, Italy
Huong
Huong 
Published
| 2 min read

Florence, the capital of Tuscany, Italy has long been famous for its historical and romantic charm that attracts famous artists (e.g., Leonardo da Vinci) to live and create masterpieces here. In Florence, churches, palaces and bridges are works of art in themselves. No wonder people fall in love with both the city and each other here. Read on to learn more about the wonderfully artistic places you’ll see in Florence.

Tip from tour guide

Sara

Sara
Tuscany

Loggia del Porcellino, close to Piazza della Signoria

Il Porcellino (Italian "piglet") is the local Florentine nickname for the bronze fountain of a boar. The fountain figure was sculpted and cast by Baroque master Pietro Tacca (1577–1640) shortly before 1634, following a marble Italian copy of a Hellenistic marble original. It was also used in the second movie of the Harry Potter saga the Chamber of Secrets, as you can see from this screenshot!

The oldest bridge in Florence

the top attractions of florence, tuscany’s capital, italy | the oldest bridge in florence

Ponte Vecchio is the oldest bridge in Florence and it survived through the world wars. Lying over the Arno, the bridge is surrounded by many traditional jewellers. Experience walking along this bridge while seeing the reflection of the surrounding buildings on the clear water’s surface. The views during the day and night give you different perspectives of the city’s atmosphere. After the sun sets, Florence is truly magical, especially during low travel season.

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Piazza del Duomo

the top attractions of florence, tuscany’s capital, italy | piazza del duomo

This is certainly the most famous part of the city. This phenomenal square is the home to the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, the Baptistery of San Giovanni and Giotto’s Bell Tower, which lies just next to the cathedral. The symbolic Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore’s (also called the Florence Cathedral) architecture is phenomenal. Look for its ceiling’s delicate and detailed Gothic interior as soon as you enter the middle part of the cathedral. You can climb up the tower for a view of the city.

Tip from tour guide

Sara

Sara
Tuscany

San Giovanni chessboard

This is a detail from the Baptistery of San Giovanni in Florence. It is a chessboard. As art historian Francesca R. Valle explained, it is a symbol of choice while reproducing in the light sections a cross. If in fact, as it were, one demolishes a cube, the result in flat form is a cross.

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Piazzale Michelangelo

the top attractions of florence, tuscany’s capital, italy | piazzale michelangelo

This is where you will see the most beautiful panoramic view of Florence that appears in the iconic photos and paintings of Florence. Here you will see the most important attractions of the city including the Florence Cathedral and the Ponte Vecchio Bridge. The Piazzale Michelangelo lies next to Abbazia di San Miniato al Monte Basilica that is also stunning. You can take a walk down to the Ponte Vecchio, heading towards the historic district. But prepare comfy shoes for this walk.

Tip from tour guide

Sara

Sara
Tuscany

View of Florence View of Florence

Since the Middle Ages, the Bardini Garden has belonged to wealthy families that have succeeded one another. Born for agricultural use, it was transformed over the centuries into a splendid Italianate garden, which in the early twentieth century was also used by the owner from whom it takes its name, the collector Stefano Bardini, known as the "prince of antiquarians," as a spectacular reception venue in which to welcome his wealthy clientele.

The Bardini Garden integrates three gardens, differing in age and style:

The Italian-style garden, with its magnificent Baroque staircase;

The English-style woodland, which, with its exotic elements, represents a rare example of an Anglo-Chinese garden;

The agricultural park in which a new orchard and the splendid wisteria arbor have found their place.

Tip from tour guide

Joanna

Joanna
Florence

The adjacent church of San Miniato al Monte is one of the oldest churches in Florence. It was built over 1,000 years ago in a Romanesque style with mosaics and a beautiful pavement. The entrance is free and the panorama over Florence is overwhelming.

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Piazza della Signoria

the top attractions of florence, tuscany’s capital, italy | piazza della signoria

What makes this square unique is the abundance of statues within the plaza. You will need to spend some time here to visit the Accademia Gallery and the Palazzo Vecchio. If you like the massive Roman sculptures that symbolise Italy, this is the place to see them!

Tip from tour guide

Sara

Sara
Tuscany

Palazzo della Signoria

In this fresco made by Giorgio Vasari and Cristofano Gherardi between 1555 and 1557 in the Palazzo della Signoria in Florence, we witness the birth of Venus. The main room celebrates the origin of the world and Grand Duke Cosimo I, whose name I associated with "cosmos." From primordial chaos the elements of the world are generated including Gaia (the Earth) and Uranus (the Sky). One of the son, Kronos enraged because his father had imprisoned him, castrated him with a sickle. The sickle fell to earth and formed Sicily, while Uranus' severed member fell into the sea and generated Venus, here depicted with all the sea minor gods. There is also a hidden political meaning: Venus is the symbol of a new age born thanks to Cosimo I, who stilled the trouble waters of Florentine government.

Tip from tour guide

Sara

Sara
Tuscany

David by Michelangelo David by Michelangelo

In 1501 Michelangelo was commissioned to create the David by Guild of Wool Merchant, who were responsible for the upkeep and the decoration of the Cathedral in Florence. He breaks away from the traditional way of representing David. He does not present us with the winner, the giant's head at his feet, but portrays the youth in the phase immediately preceding the battle: perhaps he has caught him just in the moment when he has heard that his people are hesitating, and he sees Goliath jeering and mocking them. This is the original work by Michelangelo that is now in the Accademia Gallery. The one you see in Piazza della Signoria is a replica from 1873.

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Florence Tour Guide

Sara Pallabazzer

Sara Pallabazzer

<p>I am a lively well-spoken tour guide and tour leader from Florence, and a person who has the ability to motivate different sets of audience; to communicate effectively and possesses a high degree of energy and enthusiasm.</p><p>I am able to manage multiple tasks, self-motivated team player with excellent communication skills. I am proficient in Italian, English and Norwegian and possess a strong love for art and culture and enjoy passing on this passion for our land to my guests in an exciting and educational manner which will leave them not only with a lasting memory of the country that they have visited but also of myself and the company I am working for.</p><p>Come with me and explore the best Florence has to offer. From world class museums and galleries to famous sites such as Santa Maria del Fiore, Santa Croce, Santa Maria Novella and the Palazzo Vecchio! I will ensure guests get the most out of their visit. I can show off Florence and Tuscany&#39;s hidden treasures such as narrow medieval street, hidden gardens, unique shops, and the quirky details that make a tour memorable while discovering Florence&#39;s past, present and future.</p><p>I am very adaptable and flexible with guests&#39; interests and taking into account any special events or the weather. With me as a private guide, guests will have the time to fully experience Florence - stopping to take the perfect photo or popping into one of the shops, cafes or pubs.</p><p>I am also an enthusiastic well-spoken language teacher who has the ability to motivate different student ranges and a freelance translator for English and Scandinavian languages! I have a great passion for art and cooking, and consider cooking to be a high art form, so I suggest how to pair food and wine, while also looking for the right setting, as eating should be an all-around experience. I love cooking and make my own pasta, bread and pizza!</p>

Tours by Sara

Florence Tour Guide

Joanna

Joanna

Hello, my name is Joanna. I was born and raised in Poland but then I fell hopelessly in love with Tuscany and have been living in Florence for 20 years. Wisely enough, I decided to turn my passion into work and became a tour guide. Now I can share with you my immense love for the beauty, history and art of these enchanted places. I am particularly passionate about the Middle Ages, history, sculpture, nature and sports. In my spare time, I travel, read, go to concerts, play sports and do a lot of hiking. I work mainly in Florence and Siena but I love going to Lucca, less known Tuscan beauty and Pisa. I can also organize a food tour, a wine tasting or a day trip in Tuscany.

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Florence Tour Guide

Irina Willmer

Irina Willmer

Florence Tour Guide

Dina

Dina

Florence Tour Guide

Francesca Boldrini

Francesca Boldrini

<p>Linguist specializing in art history. I am a licensed tour guide with natural communicating skills and a big passion for Tuscany and<br>Rinascimento. I speak five languages: Russian at B2 TRKI level, German at B1 level, English, Italian and French at the mother tongue level.<br>I’ve got a great problem solving skills and the ability to work under pressure gained thanks to my experience in hospitality. I Believe in the<br>power of creativity. I offer tourists a unique, memorable experience involving them in what is going on around them. I love leading visitors<br>through sites of historical and cultural interest sharing my passions for history of art, especially the period of Renaissance. Optimistic and<br>open-minded and meeting diverse people from all over the world, I have got a real genuine interest for Guest satisfaction.</p>

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Pitti Palace

pitti palace

The area around Pitti Palace (Palazzo Pitti) is known as the art district. Here you’ll find plenty of artisan and handicraft shops lying on some of the narrow street corners around the palace. You can also find the Boboli Gardens within walking distance from here. This is probably my favourite part of the city as it isn’t very crowded with tourists.

Tip from tour guide

Joanna

Joanna
Florence

Pitti Palace

The museum of Fashion and Costume in the Pitti Palace in Florence has recently reopened after being closed for three years.

The museum started in 1983 with a collection of about 6000 historical costumes and accessories, which has grown over time thanks to public and private donations. The museum was closed due to COVID, and this forced stop allowed its modernization.

For now, the museum only presents clothes from the 20th century, arranged chronologically and in rotation. 

The section on historical dresses and costumes from the 16th to the 19th centuries will also reopen in spring 2024.

Among the dresses on display are creations by Giorgio Armani, Prada, and Elsa Schiaparelli, as well as Coco Chanel and John Galliano. 

 Info - Closed every Monday.

Tip from tour guide

Sara

Sara
Tuscany

A view of Pitti Palace

From Pitti's Chapel in  Santo Spirito Basilica the predella showing Luca Pitti in front of his palace, a rare view of the Pitti Palace before the Medici extensions. Luca Pitti was an Italian banker and wealthy Florentine who lived at the time of the de facto rule of Cosimo de' Medici, who initiated the construction of the Pitti Palace named after his family.

Tip from tour guide

Sara

Sara
Tuscany

Raphael, Palazzo Pitti
One of Raphael Sanzio's most famous works inside the Palatine Gallery of the Pitti Palace, the Madonna of the Chair (1514).

The bodies of the Virgin, Christ, and the boy Baptist fill the whole picture. The tender, natural looking embrace of the Mother and Child, and the harmonious grouping of the figures in the round, have made this one of Raphael's most popular Madonnas. The isolated chair leg is reminiscent of papal furniture, which has led to the assumption that Leo X himself commissioned the painting.

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Other popular attractions

One or two days is not enough to see the Florence. There are tons of churches and other historic monuments to check out such as the Church of Santa Maria Novella and the Medici Chapels. A couple of remarkable museums in Florence are the Museo Nazionale del Bargello, the Museo di San Marco and the Museo di Palazzo Vecchio. You can get a Florence pass to visit all these museums over 72 hours for 72 EUR (roughly 80 USD).

Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
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Meet Huong, a passionate explorer born and raised in Hanoi, Vietnam. In 2011, she ventured from her homeland to Finland, where she caught the European travel bug. Since 2015, Huong has embraced the...Read more

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