How to spend a few short days in Florence
One of the most popular tourist destinations in Italy, Florence boasts an impressive number of sights to visit.
The city has a compact historic centre, which makes getting around on foot easy. Wander the cobblestone streets and admire the impressive Renaissance buildings as you walk between attractions – don’t forget to stop for gelato or espresso!
Where to Stay?
For a short trip to Florence (two to three nights), we recommend staying north of the Arno River, where most of the main attractions are to be found.
Monastery accommodation such as Casa per Ferie Suore Oblate dell’Assunzione – B&B Oblate – Borgo Pinti (TOF105) and Casa per Ferie Regina Del Santo Rosario (TOF132) will find you in quiet areas while still being on the doorstep of the best Florence has to offer.
What to do?
While you can easily spend a week or more in Florence and not see everything on offer, there are some must see sights not to be missed.
- The Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore (commonly referred to as the ‘Duomo’) is an architectural masterpiece and the jewel in the crown of Florence. Piazza del Duomo contains the imposing cathedral, bell tower and baptistery. Entrance to the floor of the cathedral is free and offers a view of the interior of Brunelleschi’s 114 metre high dome. Don’t be put off by the long lines to the entrance of the cathedral, it does move quickly! You can also climb to the top of the dome or the bell tower for stunning views of the city.
- One of the most popular art galleries in Italy, the Uffizi contains a vast number of Renaissance paintings and sculptures. Wind your way through dozens of rooms containing pieces by da Vinci, Michelangelo and Botticelli (to name a few).
- No trip to Florence is complete without visiting the Galleria dell’Accademia, home to Michelangelo’s David. Standing at an incredible 17 feet high, this intricately detailed marble sculpture leaves visitors in awe. We recommend arriving at the gallery early or booking a tour to avoid long lines!
- The most famous bridge over the Arno River, the Ponte Vecchio is the gateway to explore the south bank of Florence. Lined with jewelry stores, street performers and exceptional views of the river, this is a Florentine icon all tourists should walk over.
- A short walk south from the Ponte Vecchio is Palazzo Pitti, an opulent Renaissance palace. Over time it has been home to the famous Medici family, Napoleon and former Italian kings. It now houses an impressive collection of painting, sculptures and other artwork from over the centuries. The attached Boboli Gardens are a splendour to walk through, offering views back to the heart of Florence.