Florence Tourist Information

Florence Travel Guide

Set amongst the gently rolling hills of the Tuscan countryside, spreading across the banks of the majestic Arno River, Florence is a city of art and architecture. Its name is synonymous with the Renaissance and its famous sons: Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Dante Alighieri and Machiavelli. An inspirational place of exceptional beauty, the city is itself a masterpiece and many tourists choose to see its attractions on a Florence sightseeing tour.

Few places have had such an impact on the world of art as Florence. Piazza Signoria holds the Palazzo Vecchio and the Galleria della Accademia is the place to behold Michelangelo's David. Right next door you'll find one of the world's most visited attractions, the Uffizi Gallery. Established in 1581 by the Medici family, the gallery houses the largest collection of Renaissance paintings in the world, including Botticelli's Birth of Venus.

Florence Tourist Attractions

The massive dome of the city's landmark Duomo (Cathedral), with Giotto's Bell Tower and Brunelleschi's cupola, can be seen from almost anywhere in town. Santa Maria del Fiore Gothic cathedral, with its Brunelleschi dome and frescoes by Vasari and Zuccari, and the 13th century Franciscan basilica Santa Croce, which houses a vast array of artworks including Giotto's famous frescoes, are fine examples of Florentine architecture and wonderful Florence tourist attractions.

Other highlights include the Santo Spirito Church, designed by Brunelleschi, and the Piazzale Michelangelo, with its Romanesque basilica San Miniato al Monte and awe-inspiring panorama of the city. Santa Maria Novella Dominican church and the fully restored 14th century villa Palazzo Davanzati are also among the city's most appealing attractions.

An excellent place to start shopping is at the Ponte Vecchio Bridge, which spans across the Arno. Italy is the place to eat and local restaurants abound with great food. Chianti is the local specialty, and enjoying a glass at one of Florence's numerous open-air caf├ęs is an excellent way to soak in some of the city's charm and culture.

Transport Around Florence

Cars are not allowed in the historic town centre, so walking is the way to go. Local buses can be taken up to the Piazzale Michelangelo or to any destination off the beaten path. Taxis are available but may be difficult to find. Florence has a central train station offering easy connections to anywhere in Europe, while most international flights are serviced through either Rome or Pisa. Hired cars are highly recommended for touring the breathtaking Tuscan countryside.

Travel insurance is recommended while visiting Florence. While it is considered a safe place to visit, medical bills can be expensive when dealing with an accident or serious illness. Enjoy your trip knowing that you and your loved ones are covered in the event of a medical emergency.