Florence, with it world-famous monuments is, in fact, the cradle of the Renaissance. Here you will find an immense number of works of art.
If you are in the city on your way to Venice, you can see Florence in one day, but, in this case, there’s no time to visit the museums. It would be better to stop over for two days and not be in a hurry if you wish to visit the Uffizi Gallery and other places worthy of note.
Article was last updated in September, 2023.
How to reach Florence and how to get around
Arrive at the Firenze S. M. Novella train station. There are no direct connections between the Cinque Terre and Florence, you must change trains. Further information can be found on the site: www.trenitalia.com.
There is free parking (marked on the map) and buses that take visitors from the car parks to the city center (from the one furthest away it takes 15 minutes to get to the center). In the tourist high season it is not a good idea to drive the car to the parking area closest to the center, called Piazzale Michelangelo, because there might not be any space available. In the center of Florence there are also car parking areas at 3 euro per hour, but it takes a long time to get to them by car. If you do want to use the car, the largest parking close to the city center is located at the railway station: Via Luigi Alamanni, 1, Firenze.
What to see in Florence
The historical center of the city is regarded as unique, and a thorough visit is recommended so you don’t miss any fragment of Florentine history (the part of Florence you should visit is highlighted on the map). First of all, take a tour of the 1Uffizi Gallery, where many artistic masterpieces are preserved, but you will need to buy the ticket in advance on the internet, otherwise you will find a very long queue! Next, visit the 2main squares of Florence: Piazza della Signoria and Piazza Santa Croce, where the Basilica of the same name, famous for its frescoes, is located. You should also visit 3Ponte Vecchio, the oldest bridge in Florence, and the 4Garden of Boboli, the most well-known historical park in Italy as well as being among the most beautiful in the world.
You absolutely cannot miss the 5Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore. The architecture of the building is impressive for its size and beauty! The cathedral has the largest dome ever built, constructed without a wooden body or other means of support. It took Brunelleschi 40 years to build it and while the architect was thinking about how to construct a dome like this, the cathedral was simply erected with a large hole in the ceiling. Also pay a visit to all the surrounding places: the Campanile Tower from where you can see the whole city (414 steps, no elevator, open till 18.30), the most famous Cathedral dome in the world (463 steps, no elevator, open until 18.00 hours), the museum and the Baptistery (open until 17.00 hours). All these places are accessible with a single ticket valid for 24 h at the price of 18 euro. You are not allowed to visit the same monument twice.
For a panoramic view of Florence go up to 6Piazzale Michelangelo, where you can unwind in a bar away from the crowds of tourists and enjoy the view of the Arno River.
Where to stay in Florence?
The best accommodation in Florence are hotels situated in the green zone (see the map). We suggest you give some attention to the following hotels that have received many positive comments from tourists.
Large apartment in the center
Rating: Exceptional, 10.
Or you can compare some of the hotels based on the comments from tourists and at the prices indicated on this page.
When to visit Florence
You can enjoy a vacation in Florence in any month of the year; the seasons do not affect tourism in this city. Even during winter Florence is full of tourists, also because when Florence is decorated for Christmas, it becomes even more beautiful.