Tourist attractions in Florence include Palazzo Vecchio, San Miniato al Monte Basilica, Piazza della Repubblica, Ponte Vecchio bridge, and Galleria degli Uffizi.
Palazzo Vecchio is a massive, ancient Roman style palace, nowadays one of the most impressive city halls in Tuscany.
Historically, highlights of the palace included the original Michelangelo’s “David” statue, which was located next to the palace entrance from 1504-1873…
…when it was moved to the Accademia dell’Arte del Disegno, also in Florence.
In place of the original “David” statue there is now a copy, and on the other side of the entrance, you’ll find a statue by Baccio Bandinelli, titled “Hercules and Cacus“.
San Miniato al Monte Basilica, also known as St. Minias on the Mountain, is often called the most beautiful church in Italy.
Highlights of the church include…
- geometrically patterned marble façade,
- mosaic paintings from the 13th century, and
- the basilica’s Bishop’s Palace, located adjacent to the basilica.
Piazza della Repubblica, meanwhile, is the most famous square in the city, and its cafes, especially Caffè Giubbe Rosse, are popular meeting places…including many local artists who specialize in the style of Futurism.
The square cafes provide a nice venue to take a moment to enjoy the afternoon, and perhaps watch some of the street artist performances, as the are often many of them in the square.
Ponte Vecchio, on the other hand, is a Medieval bridge that crosses theArno river, and it is lined with shops, especially those selling jewelry.
The bridge is famous for its unique appearance, as within both sides of the bridge there are buildings, making it a closed entity.
Galleria degli Uffizi (www.uffizi.firenze.it), the Museum of Fine Arts in Florence, is one of the oldest and most famous art museums in the world, and located within the Uffizi palace.
Uffizi is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Florence, and to get into the museum, you may have to stand in line for hours during the peak of the tourist season, especially in July.
Uffizi highlights include…
- Botticelli’s “Birth of Venus”,
- Titian’s “Venus of Urbino”,
- Caravaggio’s “Bacchus” and “Medusa”, and
- Raphael’s “Madonna del cardellino”.