Florence: what to see, attractions, places to visit

What to see in Florence, major attractions and places to visit in the capital of Tuscany, the city by the great artistic heritage rich in works of art.

Attractions Florence

Capital of Tuscany, Florence is one of the Italian cities at greater artistic content, has an immense wealth of art, made of paintings, sculptures, palaces and churches scattered in its historic center. Florence is renowned as one of the most beautiful cities in the world, its buildings, its churches and its museums are part of the immense wealth of art that belongs to this city, where the Renaissance has left, in art and architecture, his famous testimony. The Piazzale Michelangelo, the Forte Belvedere or Fiesole, offer a picturesque view of the historical center of Florence, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Santa Maria del Fiore
The Duomo of Florence, and is in Italian Gothic style, built on a design by Arnolfo di Cambio and built on the foundations of Florence Cathedral, the Basilica of Santa Reparata. And ‘dedicated to Santa Maria del Fiore, the foundation stone was laid on September 8, 1296, the original project suffered’ during construction several changes and the Cathedral today is the result of 170 years of work. The façade was built in neo-Gothic design by Emilio De Fabris, between 1871 and 1887.

Brunelleschi’s dome, one of the most famous of the city, was built between 1418 and 1434. The bell tower of the cathedral was designed by Giotto, its construction start ‘in 1334, after the death of Giotto’s work was carried out by Andrea Pisano and completed, with some modifications to the original design, by Francesco Talenti in 1359. Basilica of San Lorenzo, is one of the oldest churches in the city, was consecrated by St. Ambrose in 393.

Expanded and rededicated in 1059, the Basilica was the parish of the Medici family, who in 1419, financed the expansion work designed by Filippo Brunelleschi, who had already built the Old Sacristy and another chapel, while the New Sacristy , where there are the tombs of the Medici family and the Laurentian Library were the work of Michelangelo. The work was always funded by the Medici, who wanted a burial place for the members of their family, the Medici Chapels, and a place to store their precious books and manuscripts, the Laurentian Library.

Places to visit in Florence

Palazzo Vecchio
The old house is located in Piazza della Signoria, took the name of “old” in 1565 when the family and the court of Duke Cosimo I de ‘Medici, moved into the new building, the Palazzo Pitti. The building dates back to the late thirteenth century, designed by Arnolfo di Cambio, was the seat of the Signoria, formed by the city council, headed by the priors, and the standard-bearer of justice. The present building is the result of various expansions following the first phase of construction was completed in 1315. In the second half of the sixteenth century, the palace were made expansions prominent and prestigious decorazioni.campanile of Giotto in Florence was the Duke Cosimo I de ‘Medici, you dress’ temporarily, to entrust to Giorgio Vasari the task of adapting the building to the needs of the ducal court. The palace is a treasure trove of art, the result of the work of outstanding artists such as Donatello, Michelangelo, Ghirlandaio, Bronzino, Salviati, Verrocchio, Vasari. When Florence was the capital of the Kingdom of Italy, from 1865 to 1871, Old Palace was the seat of government, after which it returned to being the seat of the municipality of Florence, as it is today. Inside is a museum that allows you to visit much of the palace.

Palazzo Pitti
Located in the Oltrarno district of Florence, this building is home to several museums. The palace was built in the second half of the 400 ‘by Luca Pitti, a rival of the Medici family, designed by Luca Fancelli, student and collaborator of Brunelleschi. The Pitti family finding themselves in financial difficulties was forced to sell the building, which was purchased by Cosimo I de ‘Medici and his wife Eleonora of Toledo, who made it their residence, giving charge to Bartolomeo Ammannati to realize an expansion, corresponding almost to the current size of the building. Were purchased land adjacent to the palace, who will form the Boboli Gardens, in order to have beautiful gardens within the city, because ‘the zone oltrarno was less crowded and more airy than the city center and then considered by Eleonora more suited to solve the health problems which posted her and her children. The palace, which has received various interventions over the centuries, after the extinction of the Medici dynasty and before becoming the property of the Italian State, was the palace of Lorraine and Savoy. The complex includes the Palazzo Pitti, the Palatine Gallery, the Gallery of Modern Art, the Costume Gallery, the Silver Museum, the Porcelain Museum, the Boboli Gardens.

Uffizi Gallery
At the beginning of 1560 Cosimo I de ‘Medici entrust’ to Giorgio Vasari, the task of designing a building that would allow to bring together in a single site offices of the Courts of the arts in Florence, so ‘between the south side of the Piazza della Signoria and Lungarno , was built the new seat of government. The work was completed in 1580, by Bernardo Buontalenti, commissioned by Francesco I de ‘Medici. Previously, in 1565, on the occasion of the wedding of Francesco I with Joan of Austria, Duke Cosino I gave assignment to Vasari to build a link between elevated Palazzo Vecchio and Palazzo Pitti, the famous Vasari Corridor, which passes from the Galleria degli Uffizi and Ponte Vecchio. The duke, who had a residence in the Palazzo Pitti, so he could ‘reach freely and without risks the government palace. palace throttle firenzeNel 1581, Francis I start ‘the collection of the Gallery with collections already begun in 400’. The members of the Medici family, over the centuries have commissioned or purchased many works of art which are now part of a great artistic heritage. The last heir of the Medici family recognized the collections belonging to the city and imposed a law that forbade the export. During the government of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine, the museum was opened to the public. New productions were made, and some collections were instrumental in the formation of other museums in Florence. In the time they were acquired new works from Churches and Convents and purchased from other museums important paintings in order to well-documented throughout the Italian painting. To quote some extraordinary artists, the gallery houses works by Giotto, Piero della Francesca, Leonardo, Botticelli, Caravaggio, Michelangelo, Filippo Lippi, Raphael, Andrea del Sarto, Titian, Antonio and Piero del Pollaiuolo, Andrea Mantegna., Jacopo Pontormo, Caravaggio . Of note is the collection of ancient sculpture, mostly of the Roman era.

Ponte Vecchio
In 1345 the bridge was rebuilt three crossings arched, after a flood sweep ‘away the previous built around 1170, but already existed in Roman times then a bridge crossing the Arno. The shops of the bridge before hosting the goldsmiths and jewelers were occupied by butchers (butchers), which had been joined on the Ponte Vecchio in order to remove the meat processing from the city center, but when it was built the Vasari Corridor, which also passes over the shops of the east side of the bridge, the Duke Ferdinando I, who went that route, in 1593 he occupied the shops of the bridge by goldsmiths, because he did not like the smells coming from the very noble meat trade. At the center of the bridge there are two terraces, one on the west there is a monument to Benvenuto Cellini, the famous goldsmith, sculptor and artist from Florence.

Palazzo Medici
Towards the middle of 400 ‘Cosimo the Elder, the patriarch of the Medici, commissioned’ the architect Michelozzo to build this building, which was the model for the whole of civil architecture of the Renaissance. In simple and elegant palace, residence of the Medici family, you create ‘a very favorable environment for the development of art, here formed the most illustrious Florentine artists of the Renaissance. In 1659 the building was purchased by the Riccardi, who actually implemented many renovations, decorations and expansions, keeping the outside of the old style, while the interiors were adapted to the Baroque era. In 1814 the building was sold to the Lorraine, later became state property and Florence when I become ‘the capital of the Kingdom of Italy I host’ the Ministry of the Interior, until 1874, when it was purchased by the Province of Florence, still owner of ‘ property.

Convent of San Marco
National Museum of San Marco, is located in the Convent of San Marco, a former Dominican convent, where they lived and worked excellent representatives of culture and art of the Florentine 400 ‘. Since 1300 there was a church and a monastery in the place where Cosimo the Elder, on the advice of the Vicar General of the Dominican Antoninus of Florence, built the new complex. The task was entrusted to Michelozzo, trusted architect of the Medici family, while the direction of the paintings was entrusted to Fra Angelico, who was a friar in the convent. The facade of the church was built in 1777-78 in neo-classical style. In addition to the Convent lived Beato Angelico, Antoninus of Florence, Fra ‘Bartolomeo and Fra’ Girolamo Savonarola, the Dominican friar preacher, convicted and executed for heresy in 1498. The museum is famous for the valuable collection of paintings on wood and the extraordinary cycle of frescoes Fra Angelico. There are also works with their other teachers, including: Domenico Ghirlandaio, Fra ‘Bartolomeo, Baldovinetti, Poccetti, Vignali, Sogliani.

Itinerary Florence on foot

To see the Piazza del Duomo, the Baptistery of San Giovanni with the cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and Giotto’s bell tower which offers an excellent view of the city crossed by the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo, Palazzo Medici -Riccardi, the Basilica of San Lorenzo, the Laurentian Library, the Medici Chapels, the Via Dei Calzaiuoli, Orsanmichele, Piazza della Signoria with Palazzo Vecchio, the Uffizi Gallery which collects immense works of art, Davanzati Palace, Ponte Vecchio its features workshops, Pitti Palace overlooking the square and inside the Boboli Gardens, the Church of Santo Spirito, the Church of Santa Maria del Carmine, Palazzo Strozzi, Rucellai Palace, the Church of S .Trinita, the Church of Santa Maria Novella with the Museum of Santa Maria Novella, the Last Supper S.Apollonia, the Church and Museum of San Marco, the Academy Gallery Via Ricasoli, the Basilica of the Santissima Annunziata, Hospital Innocenti, the Archaeological Museum in the palace of the spreader, Palazzo de ‘Pazzi, Church Badia Fiorentina, the Bargello National Museum, Holy Cross Church, Museo dell’Opera di Santa Croce, Piazzale Michelangelo mandatory destination to enjoy a panoramic view of Florence, San Miniato al Monte, Fort Belvedere and Museum Stibbert.

Famous squares of Florence

– Piazza della Signoria is the central square of Florence where Palazzo Vecchio, where the seat of the municipality.
– Piazza del Duomo is one of the major monuments in Italy where there is the Cathedral with its famous dome by Brunelleschi, Giotto’s Bell Tower and the Baptistery of San Giovanni.
– Republic Square is a square in period style where there are important cafes and luxury hotels.
– Piazza Santa Croce with the eponymous basilica was the scene in the Renaissance of medieval games, parties, shows and competitions typical popular such as football in costume.
– Piazza San Lorenzo, known for the daily market of victuals, is dominated by the basilica in the background with the great dome of the Chapel of the Princes.
– Piazza Santa Maria Novella is dominated by the facade of the church and is one of the main squares of Florence where there is also the central station.
– Piazza della Santissima Annunziata is one of the first examples of European urban planning.
– Piazza Santo Spirito is frequent site of markets as well as being full of restaurants and nightclubs often meeting point of many Florentines.
– Piazzale Michelangelo is a comfortable vantage point to admire the panorama of the city of Florence which is diventuto many years a regular destination for tourists who flock to the city.

Main palaces of Florence

– Palazzo Vecchio located in Piazza della Signoria, the town hall and a museum which contains works by famous artists including Agnolo Bronzino, Michelangelo Buonarroti and Giorgio Vasari.
– Palazzo Pitti, in Piazza Pitti and the Boboli Gardens includes.
– Palazzo Rucellai, which is a typical example of Florentine fifteenth-century architecture, was designed by Leon Battista Alberti.
– Palazzo Strozzi is located approximately in the middle of Via Tornabuoni and is considered one of the masterpieces of civil Florentine Renaissance.

Churches of Florence historical center

– Santa Maria del Fiore, the cathedral of Florence, is one of the largest churches in Europe with the famous Brunelleschi dome that has a diameter of 90 meters.
– Baptistery of San Giovanni is beautifully decorated both inside and outside with the signatures of famous craftsmen villages, famous for the door of Paradise by Lorenzo Ghiberti.
– Santa Maria Novella in the square that bears the same name and its interior contains priceless works of art, such as the frescoes by Masaccio, Paolo Uccello, Filippino Lippi and Domenico Ghirlandaio; the facade is very beautiful, a masterpiece by Leon Battista Alberti.
– Holy Cross is one of the largest Franciscan basilicas which represents one of the major achievements of the Gothic style in Italy.
– Holy Spirit is a church built by Filippo Brunelleschi characterized by the combination of open spaces and full volumes, flooded with natural light.
– Carmine church diventuta famous throughout the world for the Brancacci Chapel, with frescoes by Masaccio and Masolino.
– Santa Trinita was the first Gothic church in Florence with masterpiece by Domenico Ghirlandaio and frescoes in the Sassetti Chapel.