Surrounded by Tuscan hills, the beautifully romantic city of Florence is a treasure chest of Renaissance art and sculpture. A city dense in art, history, culture : no wonder it is a part of the “Holy Trinity” along with Rome & Venice. A quaint town in the boot-shaped country, Florence has a way lot to explore!
Here Are 10 Things Every Traveller Must Know Before Going To Florence :
1. Book In Advance :
No one wants to be part of an hour-long queue, sometimes hours! So book your tickets in advance for museums. Galleries like Uffizi are located within historical buildings & so therefore a limited number of visitors can be inside at a given time. You’ll have to pay a little extra for booking in advance, but it will be worth every penny!
2. Keep You Cards Away :
Carry lot of cash instead. It’s always a good idea while in Italy. Most of the cafes, restaurants and shops prefer paper currency.
3. Melancholic Mondays :
An important point to note, most of the museums as well as few restaurants are shut on Mondays. So plan your visit accordingly.
4. The Duomo :
Predominating the skyline of Florence, this structure is amazing because of the number of years it took to build it(140 years). Housing one of the most spectacular pieces of art, its dome is the largest in the entire world. So, there is no way one can miss this structure.
5. Walk, Walk, Walk :
Florence is best explored on foot especially to go on the less-travelled paths. And by that we mean comfortable walking shoes because the streets are paved with uneven stones. Also, walking is the best way to soak in yourself completely in the Florence vibe & culture. Owing to lot of one-way streets, taking a cab or a rental car is definitely a strict no no.
6. Il Grande Gelato :
Florence scores bull’s eye when it comes to gelato, claimed to be the best in Italy. No wonder, Italian Gelato was invented in Florence. It gives immense pleasure and a treat to the taste buds by sampling gelato everywhere you go in Florence.
7. Salt-Less Bread :
Everywhere you go, the bread in Florence is salt-free. Blame a long history for this phenomenon, but its something Florentines have got used to and all the recipes are made accordingly!
8. The Firenze Card :
This is a single card valid for almost everything from museums(including the Uffizi and the Accademia), gardens to free travel on buses and trams. It costs €72 and is valid for 72 hours. It is actually worth it, because the sum total of individual entry fees for all that is included comes out to be more than the value of the card. So buy it only if you plan to visit most of the touristy places here. So, skip the long ticketing lines and go for the Firenze Card.
9. Night Visit To Palazzo Vecchio :
Spend your evening at this museum and you will be surprised by the solitary view it has to offer minus the crowd. You also get a wonderful vista of the main buildings & monuments, everything lit up in the night sky.
10. Leather Shopping :
There are leather shops all over Florence, in the small lanes and corners. You would be taken aback by the smell of leather everywhere. So, Porcellino Market & San Lorenzo Market should be on your list if you want to grab some excellent deals.
Validate your Ticket : After buying your tickets at the bus or train station, one must validate them at the validating machines put up at the start of the platform, so as to prove that one is gong to use the ticket right then and to avoid a heavy fine.
The Riposo : Don’t be surprised if you find shops in Florence shut between 1-4 p.m. Italians go home in the afternoon to indulge in their mid-day siesta called Riposo before heading back to work again!
Go for off-the-beat museums : Ever heard of the perfume museum or the wax museum? Apart from the famous Uffizi Gallery or Gallery Accademia, there are loads of other places where you can explore art in the Tuscan capital. Cue La Specola – the Museum of Zoology and Natural History is the weirdest museum in Florence that houses collection of 18th Century wax models along with taxidermy samples. Also, for all footwear lovers, The Museo Salvatore Ferragamo should be on your check list. With a collection of more than 10,000 privately commissioned shoes, the museum proves to be a haven.
The Florence Syndrome : No wonder Florence is overloaded with art that one can sometimes feel overwhelmed and experience dizziness by seeing too much of it. Also called the Stendhal Syndrome, it is a strange but a real thing!
So here were 10 things you must know before you travel to Florence, hope this article helped you.