Florence, Italy Attractions - What to See and What to Skip
Florence, Italy is one of the most beautiful, romantic and culturally fascinating cities in the world. Because of this, the Florence, Italy attractions can be overwhelming, especially for first-time visitors. There are over 70 museums and plenty of other attractions -- don't feel bad if you don't have time to do it all, just revel in the things you do!
Firstly, and most importantly, you can buy tickets in advance for some of the more popular Florence, Italy attractions. This is highly recommended for the Uffizi Gallery, the Accademia Gallery and Pitti Palace (which houses many galleries) for which you will have to wait in line even if you have tickets.If you don't have tickets, you'll have to wait in two lines, and that can take hours.
Here's the quickest roundup ever to help you decide which must-sees to see when visiting Florence:
The Uffizi, the Accademia and Pitti Palace have the longest lines of all the Florence attractions because they are home to many of the most famous artworks in the world. If you're the type of person who wants to check Michelangelo's The David, Da Vinci's The Adoration of the Magi and endless Rembrandts, Raphaels and other greats off your list, you can't skip these three. Just have time for one? The Pitti Palace line will get you into many galleries (currently six) for the price of one, offering a variety of choices from the classics displayed in ornate rooms to an early Madonna (music Madonna) dress in the Costume Gallery, as well as the expansive, lavish Boboli Gardens in the back.
The Duomo. Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore, aka the Duomo, aka the Cathedral Church of Florence is something you'll see from any high point in the city. It is big enough that you can get lost inside (not an entirely unpleasant experience). One of the main draws of this Florence, Italy attraction is the view from the top; you can climb either the Dome itself ("duomo" means "dome") or the adjacent tower, Giotto's Bell Tower or Campanile. The Dome is slightly taller, but either is breathtaking -- in more ways than one. If you have time, the inside of the Baptistery of John the Baptist (in the same piazza) is a stunning sight and only takes a few minutes to digest.
The Ponte Vecchio. Don't worry about seeing this Florence, Italy attraction; it is one of the main bridges in town. You will almost certainly use it to cross the Arno River at least once, and it's mostly a hub for expensive jewelry. To see the grandeur (and get a great picture of) the Ponte Vecchio, you'll want to be on a bridge to the east or west.
Santa Croce is a beautiful Franciscan church which houses the tombs of Michelangelo, Machiavelli, Galileo and Dante, among others. Like in most of Italy's best churches, you'll be awed by the stained glass windows and frescoes in this Florence attraction. If you're interested in Galileo or Dante specifically, check out the Museo Galileo or Dante's House, and see The Basilica of San Lorenzo to take in nine Michelangelos.
Still not done with Michelangelo and great Renaissance and Gothic art? Check out the Bargello, where you'll find Bacchus, Brutus and other works, as well as Donatello's David and an extensive textile, coin and ceramics collection.
One Florence, Italy attraction you simply mustn't skip? Gelato. Preferably daily.