Whether you love art, food or culture the most, your heart will be full with a visit to Florence. Brimming with Italian charm, it's the sort of place you can easily arrive at without an itinerary, and still feel accomplished by the day's end.
With our luxury Florence apartments and villas, you'll be at the heart of it all. But if you're hoping to explore more of Italy, we've got family-friendly villas across the country, covering more of Tuscany, Sicily and the Italian Lakes.
Every trip to Florence starts with Duomo di Firenze, its world-famous cathedral. A sprawling sight that should be appreciated from all sides, this architectural wonder truly lives up to the hype.
Art fans should be sure to visit the Uffizi Palace and Gallery. While this renowned museum is home to countless Renaissance artworks, including Da Vinci's The Baptism of Christ, the inner courtyard is a work of art all of its own. However, your Florence visit simply won't be complete without also wandering the Galleria dell'Academia - home to Michelangelo's renowned statue of David.
Love your history? Don't miss Pitti Palace. First purchased by the Medici family in 1550, today it houses four museums, including one of costume and fashion. Once you've got your fill, head outside and explore the Boboli Gardens - a wonderful example of Italian landscaping.
Aside from the key cultural icons, Florence is also home to many piazzas that are perfect for people-watching, and sometimes the best little eateries can only be found when you take wrong turns down unsuspecting alleys. Be sure to enjoy a stroll across the famous Ponte Vecchio bridge, spanning the river Arno. Just try to resist parting with any cash for costly souvenirs - they'll be much cheaper elsewhere.
It's likely you've already tried (and fallen in love with) Italian cuisine back home, but what you've probably had is a watered-down version of the real thing. Florence gives you a true taste of Tuscan cuisine, with the city's most notable dish undoubtedly being bistecca alla fiorentina. This large t-bone steak is fire-grilled over roasted chestnuts, and always left pink on the inside - no exceptions.
Meat lovers are certainly in luck here, because another popular staple is lampredotto - a sandwich made with a cow's fourth stomach. Rabbit, veal brains and wild boar also make regular appearances on menus.
Vegetarians aren't entirely out of luck though, with panini shops typically offering at least one sandwich that's crammed with fresh produce. Come dinnertime, traditional tagliatelle funghi porcini is made using fresh pasta, truffle and porcini mushrooms. Crostini, or bruschetta, is another mainstay, though be sure to order yours with meat-free toppings.
And for something sweet, you can't pass up schiacciata alla fiorentina - a traditional Italian orange and vanilla cake that's deliciously light and only subtly sweet. If you prefer a more sugary dessert, you can't go wrong with a couple scoops of creamy, handmade gelato.