I remember when I first heard about the renaissance literature which started in Tuscany province in Florence, Italy. It was a thought provoking studying because renaissance means a rebirth or reawakening. Florence is a dreamy city; the magnificent cathedral at the centre of the city is home to the relics of several saints and apostles. Its streets are busy and lined with cobbled stones and its ambience proudly embodies its history, as its restaurants fill the air with Italian aromas
Walking down twisted tiny streets, elegantly lined with ancient cobbled stones all leading to the charming Doumo de Cathedral, certainly not missing the brilliant deliciousness oozing off numerous Italian kitchens and restaurants on every side. I travelled down memory lane to my literature class, FLORENCE noted for its rich culture, renaissance art and architecture. Elegant, ancient, charming and delicious those words will always perfectly describe historic beautiful Florence (May you never lose your allure and charm).
Florence (Firenze) is the capital city of the region of Tuscany in Italy, after the dark ages, Florence became the birth place of a new world order, that event is most popularly known as Renaissance (Literature Major), hence making it the most powerful city in Italy from 1865 to 1871.
As a major Italian city it is accessible by Air via budget airlines like Ryan Air and Wizz Air, major buses like Oui bus and Flix bus also have connections to Florence, or you can join my personal favorite BlaBla car. Depending on your location with under 150 Euros you should be able to buy yourself a return trip.
Airbnb is your best bet if you really want to stay in the city centre, for around 30 Euros you can get a beautiful room with a great view of Florence’s rusty brown roof tops HaHa! However, for a much cheaper room going for 20 Euros or less you can stay in smaller towns around Florence. My favorite town is Limité, quite neighborhood with very friendly people, it’s the perfect getaway from a busy day in the city.
Food in Florence is out of this world, they have the staple Italian pizza and pasta delicacies but their special florentine 1kg roast steak is a must try, for around 36 Euros you can lose yourself as you savor a moist, delicate, and amazingly flavored steak. It is by far the biggest and tastiest piece of pure bliss on the planet. Another favorite is the Italian crusty bread and florentine olive oil, a taste of this is like heaven in your mouth, almost all restaurants serve this but you may have to ask. You can also find several Gelateria’s in the city, I personally love Italian Gelatos and Florence has them!
What to do in Florence?
Florence has something exciting for everybody.
The city contains numerous museums and art galleries, promise me you will check out the Uffizi Gallery and the Palazzo Pitti. Do you know that Florence’s artistic and architectural heritage makes it one of the most beautiful cities in the world (Ask UNESCO #fact)?
At the centre of Florence is a domed Cathedral known as Santa Maria del Fiore or more commonly The Duomo Cathedral, it is apparently 600 years old and still is the largest dome built in brick and mortar. Just around the corner from the Duomo is the Baptistery, do check that out too.
While in the city, it is imperative to visit Bartolomeo Ammannati’s Fountain of Neptune (1563–1565) this is the best show of Italian marble work on the planet. It is located right inside Piazza della Signoria.
A walk to old Florence will have you facing River Arno, and walking across it on one of its bridges. Please pick the old bridge called Ponte Vecchio. It gives you easy access to Palazzo Pitti and one of the finest museums I have ever seen, The Uffizi. And guys, do you know that this bridge survived the World War II intact? (Let that sink in)
For the lovers of everything art , Florence is home to prestigious masterpieces by renowned artist like Dante Alighieri, Giovanni Boccaccio, Francesco Guicciardini, and Niccolò Machiavelli. It was also home to sculptors such as Donatello, Giambologna, Cellini and Ammannati (I heard that the sculpts are not the original copies, but they are beautiful anyway). You can get to visit their homes and see where their poems and works were born.
Florence also has several squares called Piazza, you can find nice cafes and shopping centers in these squares, The Piazza della Republic is my personal favorite I mean it has a Hard Rock Café there. The Piazza Santa Croce is very close to the Arno, so if you are on that side of town do check it out, will you?
For a Bonus, if you are in Florence, head over to Pisa, it’s a few kilometers away and totally worth it. Best part is all you need is one day, and you can stand face to face with the leaning tower of Pisa. This tower is to me the ultimate symbol of beauty from ashes. Ok, let me fill you in.
You see Tuscana, is the name of the region where both Florence and Pisa are situated, at the onset of the renaissance era the people of this region were very advance in architecture, so they decide let’s build a really tall tower. However, when the tower was completed it began tilting to the side (let’s say some laws of physics really do make sense).
Now this magnificent towers, is two levels high and 200 steps above ground level. The journey up is exciting at first, well, until your thigh muscles remind you that they exist HaHa! However, the excitement will keep you going; trust me when you get to the top the view is so worth it guys. Also the fallen angel stature on the lawn of the Tower of Pisa is a must see, something about it makes me happy.
Let’s just say Never visit Florence without including Pisa, its incomplete 🙂.
So get your bags ready and head on out to Tuscana and enjoy beautiful Florence, do take amazing pictures, and make sure we know you went to Florence.