Florence is a city of arts, the cradle of the Renaissance. The city is very conveniently located almost in the middle of the road between the north of Italy and its capital. It will not be difficult to get to Florence from any major city, be it Venice, Milan or Rome. Therefore, many travelers to Italy try to include Florence in their itinerary, preferring to spend only 1 day here.
Helpful advice: If you only have 1 day in Florence, set yourself an audio city tour for the iPhone link that BlogoItaliano released in 2019. This is a ready-made audio guide around the city, containing short informative audio stories about 56 of the main sights of Florence.
All excursion points are compiled as part of a single route and are plotted on a convenient map that works even without the Internet. At the same time, the built-in GPS makes it easy to determine your location and find the path to the nearest audio excursion objects.
When downloading the application, a free trial version with 5 excursion points will immediately be available to you. Access to the full version will cost only a few Euros and is many times cheaper than even the most budget guided tours. You can download a trial version of the audio guide on this page.
So what can you see in Florence in 1 day? Despite the fact that the city is very compact and all the central attractions are located within walking distance from each other, it is unlikely to get around them all in 1 day.
Art is found everywhere, but to visit Florence and not look at least at one art museum is a real crime. No wonder that the art collection of this city is considered one of the best in Europe. But even a cursory acquaintance with one of the museums will steal at least 2 hours of precious time.
Today Blogoitaliano will tell you which attractions on the map of Florence deserve special attention, but where to spend the most time, you decide on your own, based on your own preferences.
Morning in Florence
Most travelers stay in the "city of art" by train to Santa Maria Novella Central Station. From here we will begin our walk. If you have not read our articles on how to get to Florence from the main cities of Italy, we highly recommend doing this:
You can encounter art when you have already crossed the threshold of the station building. Just opposite is the eponymous Church of Santa Maria Novella, which is considered the oldest in the city.
Its construction was in the XIV-XV centuries. The era of the Middle Ages can be traced both in the external appearance of the temple, and inside. Numerous works of art are stored here, among which the cycle of frescoes from the biography of the Virgin and John the Baptist is of most interest.
In the Academy Gallery you can find a genuine sculpture of David by Michelangelo
From the Basilica of Santa Maria Novella, it makes sense to head to Academy Galleryto take a look at the authentic sculpture of David by Michelangelo. Fortunately, it’s not difficult to get there: follow Via Sant'Antonino to the intersection with Via Guelfa, where you should turn right and continue to the intersection with Via Ricasoli. On the left side, you will undoubtedly see a long line, which will tell you that the target has been found.
To get around the queue and save several hours of precious time, it makes sense to purchase tickets to the Gallery online. BlogoItaliano wrote in detail about the Gallery and its collection in a separate article.
Uffizi Gallery - Italy's most visited museum
An alternative to the Academy Gallery for those who think that watching in Florence in 1 day can be Uffizi Gallery - One of the largest painting museums in Western Europe. The original works of Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Michelangelo, Rembrandt and many other outstanding geniuses from the XIII to the beginning of the XX centuries have been preserved here.
The Uffizi Gallery is considered the most visited museum in Italy, so buying tickets to save time is best online. Read more about how to get to the Gallery and what to see here.
Day in Florence
If you look at the map of the sights of Florence, near the Academy Gallery we will find Medici Palace. It is located on Via Camillo Cavour. In general, the Medici family at different times owned different palaces, including the famous Palazzo Vecchio in Piazza Signoria and the Palazzo Pitti on the south bank of the Arno River.
The Medici family appreciated art very highly. In their palaces they managed to collect a rich collection of paintings. For example, the Medici Chapel was preserved unchanged in the Medici Palace, painted in 1461 by frescoes by Benozzo Gozzoli, and in the Palazzo Vecchio - a magnificent collection of frescoes by Vasari and his students.
Frescoes of the 15th century are preserved in the Chapel of the Magi of the Medici Palace.
You can honor the memory of the great Dukes of Tuscany very nearby. The Medici family chose the family necropolis chapel at the basilica of San Lorenzo, to the design of which the great Michelangelo himself had a hand.
By the way, in addition to the Medici Chapel and the Basilica proper, the San Lorenzo complex also includes Laurentzian Library, where you can see a huge collection of historical literature, including the Bible of the VIII century. and the first Roman encyclopedia.
Santa Maria del Fiore - the main treasure on the map of Florence attractions
From the Piazza di San Lorenzo at your fingertips to the Piazza del Duomo, named after its location on it the cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore. The Duomo is the most significant attraction on the map of Florence. The 42-meter Bruneleski dome has long been the main symbol in numerous photographs and postcards.
The Duomo was built over 6 centuries, starting from the end of the XIII century. Its architecture has become a kind of boundary between the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. More than half a century was required for the construction of an openwork 85-meter bell tower (Campanile), which has become a prime example of Florentine Gothic. Now the campaigna of the cathedral, together with the Bruneleski dome, serve as excellent viewing platforms.
Baptistery of St. John the Baptist was erected in the V century.
In addition to the cathedral on the Piazza del Duomo, you can see baptistery of san giovanni. The Baptistery is the oldest building in the square. It was erected back in the 5th century, and acquired the outer cladding, which can still be seen now, in the 11th-12th centuries. The dome of the baptistery is decorated with exquisite mosaics of the 13th century.
Looking at Florence from a bird's eye view, you can go further. From Cathedral Square, Via dei Calzaiuoli leads to another famous square in the city - Signoria Square.
The Palazzo Vecchio in Piazza Signoria impresses with its monumentality
The architectural dominant of the square is Palazzo Vecchio, which we mentioned a little above. Initially, the government of the Florentine Republic (Signoria) met here, and therefore the area at the Palazzo became known as Signoria Square.
Signoria Square is called an open-air museum: here you can admire a collection of sculptures from the Renaissance. Unfortunately, most of the sculptures are now replaced with copies. Originals are stored in the nearby Academy Gallery and the Uffizi Gallery.
The Santa Croce Basilica has become the necropolis of many prominent natives of Florence
From Signoria Square, past the Uffizi Gallery, you can go to the embankment of the Arno River, or take a little walk along Via dei Gondi and Borgo dei Greci to Santa Croce Basilica.
The basilica is considered the largest Franciscan church in the world and serves as a necropolis for outstanding personalities of Florence. Here they found the last peace of Galileo, Rossini, Machiavelli and even the great Michelangelo himself.
Having bowed to the ashes of the great Florentines, return to Signoria Square, from where it is easiest to go down to the banks of the Arno River. The river divides Florence into northern and southern parts.
Evening in Florence
Having been pretty much in 1 day in the bustling center of Florence, it is better to spend the evening in peace and quiet, namely, on the southern bank of the Arno River.
Connect the banks of the river 10 bridges. The most famous - Ponte Vecchio bridge, built back in the XIV century. near Signoria Square. Since then, his appearance has not changed much. At all times, the bridge served as the center of brisk trade. At first, it was occupied by butchers, now expensive jewelry stores are located here.
Ponte Vecchio Bridge has always been a center of lively trade
Unlike the enlightened center, the southern coast of Arno was occupied for a long time by poor neighborhoods.
In the XV century. the large banker Luca Pitti bought a large plot of land on the right bank and began the construction of a new palazzo, which a century later, the descendants of Pitti sold to the Duchess Eleanor of Toledo - the wife of the Tuscan Duke Cosimo I Medici.
Under Medici, the palace was noticeably expanded; Boboli Gardens, which served as a prototype of many European parks.
A leisurely walk through Boboli Park will allow you to relax from the bustle of the city and admire Florence from the height of the hill of the same name.
Boboli Gardens - a cozy place to relax after a busy day in Florence
Well, to meet the sunset is best to go to Piazzale Michelangelo, from where no less spectacular views open than from Boboli Hill. You can get to the square by going about a kilometer along the southern bank of the Arno River.
From Piazzale Michelangelo the whole city is visible at a glance
Florence Itinerary BlogoItaliano
Of course, it is almost impossible to cover Florence in 1 day. It is believed that the concentration of attractions per capita, the capital of Tuscany still holds first place in the world. There are so many things to watch. There are more than 70 museums in the city alone.
It should be allocated 4 or 5 days, or even better - a week. But few travelers can afford a week for Florence alone. It is customary to take the city by storm, allocating a day for it, a maximum of 2.
That is why in 2017, BlogoItaliano tried to create the perfect solution - a ready route in Florence for 1 day.
Just a few hours of viewing the selected and structured information in a PDF book format - and you become a real expert on Florence - what and how to look, to take the maximum from the city.
Florence holds first place in the world in the number of attractions per capita
- A ready-made walking route for 1 day, covering 25 main sights of Florence
- A detailed route map in Google Maps, as well as labels for the maps.me application, so that you can transfer the map to your phone and use without internet
- PDF version of the route, which you can simply print and take with you on a trip
- Recommendations on an application with free and high-quality audio tours that will do without a guide
- Little-known places and “chips”, which most tourists pass by
- 6 viewing platforms of the city so that you have cool photos
- The mode of operation of the main attractions of the route so as not to miss anything and have time for everything
- What to try in Florence with food and where to get tips from local guides
- How to get on free and budget excursions in Florence
- And much more…
In addition to Florence, BlogoItaliano has detailed itineraries for other Italy's most interesting cities. You can see their detailed description and place an order for any of them on this page.
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