Florence is one of Italy’s most beautiful cities. A fact that people come in thousands just to see the legend, the cradle of art and renaissance, confirms her standing in the world. I would like to make you aware of the fact that you can be a traveler and not a tourist. The traveler enjoys places he or she visits and doesn’t rush. Even in just 3 days you can explore and enjoy the city’s renowned places. Take pleasure in visiting more than running after others and their ‘’must do’’ in Florence. You will enjoy exploring the famous museums and buildings, parks and gardens, the night life and mornings, while others stand in the line waiting for hours to be admitted to Uffizi and Palazzo Pitti.
When to visit Florence?
It is my belief that Florence is most charming in October. I have lived here for a long time and Fall is the best time to visit.This time of a year abounds with nice warm sunny days, inviting you to take a stroll among picturesque streets, piazzas and local markets. Feel free to roam around and explore. You can take delight in sweet local fruits, red vine and freshly made olive oil without breaking a sweat while sitting in the charming local restaurants. Surrounding hills are green and lush in October as well as numerous gardens and parks. The hot Mediterranean Summer leaves place to the gentle rays of Fall and the nature vests herself in beautiful deep greens of pines and golden, red, burgundy brown and creamy yellow of plants and lawns. This city has so many places for you to explore that it is almost impossible to do so during hot summer days. Consider also that in summer you must deal with swarm of tourists and thousands of people on the streets.One thing is certain, whenever you decide to visit Italy it will be the right time. Here the climate is gentle and every season has its charms.
What to do in Florence
There are a lot of things you can do on your 3-day visit to Florence.
People that like to visit museums can do it even for free, or pay and optimize their time cutting the wait on the entrance.
People in love with the nature and casual strolls can visit surrounding gardens and villas.
The night life starts with something to nibble on and a glass of vine in the local bars and continues with a dinner in restaurants with delicious food and friendly service and you can get to know some locals too.
Food is exquisite so you can`t go wrong with unusual Florentine cuisine and remember that you are on a vacation. Be adventurous! Try new stuff and local delicacies that are tasty but probably unlike anything you have experienced in your home country.
Here is a list that can help you get the best out of Florence in just 3 days.
What to do, where to go?
If you haven’t found accommodation yet, try some B&B or small hotels. They offer excellent service and the price is convenient.
On the first day it is always nice to take a walk or you can take a bike and have a ride in the center and near the river. Get to know your surroundings with city bikes you can take in apposite parking places paying just a small fee. These bikes are parked in the city center in various piazzas, squares and you can leave them also on any of those locations.
Start your visit with Piazzale Michelangelo, it is only 2 km from the center and enjoy the spectacular view of the whole city. You can admire Ponte Vecchio, Santa Croce, Duomo and Palazzo Vecchio, the view is breath taking. Here is also situated one of my favorite small gardens, the Garden of Roses, just under the square, this gem is well hidden from the view and relaxing.
There is also a church San Miniato in Monte, situated directly above piazzale. It was Michelangelo’s favorite church and once you see it in person you will know why. The facade is similar to the facades of Santa Croce and Santa Maria Novella, in green and white marble geometric patterns. The church was built between 11th and 13th century.
You can continue your ride or walk following the street “viale“ that descends toward the city. It is a driveway surrounded by trees and you can spot exclusive villas. Imagine it like Florence’s Beverly Hills, but better and less snobbish. People here can take a walk or run.
These places I have mentioned can be reached by bus as well, number 13.
Continuing your pleasant walk, you will arrive to the fortress of Belvedere, a place that has the magnificent view over the city and it is also a preferred place for romantic couples. From there it is just a short walk to Palazzo Pitti.
The Pitti Palce is a host to couple museums and has most famous Florentine garden the Boboli garden. You must pay to visit but if you read carefully I will give you some advice on how to spend less or nothing during your museum or garden visits.
From Palazzo PItti you can go directly to Ponte Vecchio, the Old Bridge
have a stroll on the romantic bridge and maybe even buy something in the jewelry shops situated on the bridge. This was the only bridge across the Arno river in Florence until 1218. Therefore, the name Old is justified. There have been shops on Ponte Vecchio since the 13th century.
From Ponte Vecchio is just few hundred meters to Uffizi.
a museum that is ranked among 5 most important museums in the world. All state museums are free every 1st Sunday of the month and you can save up to 50 euros if you plan your educational vacation in those days. It is also good to have a reservation, because tourists can wait even few hours in the summer in front of a museum. Plan your visits well, or buy a combined ticket for major Florentine museums. You can do it online before starting your trip.
Palazzo Vecchio and Piazza Signoria are just around the corner. Michelangelo’s David was placed here as a symbol of Florence. The city of the time sought to represent herself at her best and what is better than David that conquers Goliath. It is the victory of intellect over sheer brute force and Florence prided herself as the city of arts, culture and intellect. The original statue can be seen in the museum of Academia.
Expect to be overwhelmed and full of impressions, so take your time now and relax with a nice dinner.