Florence

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Eco-friendly travel guide to Florence advises how to be a responsible tourist. Learn how to explore the attractions in a sustainable way and how to respect the local people and culture. Make your trip green by supporting locally owned hotels, organic restaurants and other businesses. Read more on how to protect the environment by making conscientious choices and how to travel green in Florence, Italy.

View of Florence from Duomo Tower


  • Air quality: 4 / 5
  • Exploring by foot: 4 / 5
  • Exploring by bicycle: 3.5 / 5
  • Public transportation: 4 / 5
  • Parks: 4.5 / 5
  • Outdoor activities: 3.5 / 5
  • Locals' English level: 4 / 5
  • Safety: 4 / 5
  • Accommodation: US$30 - $120
  • Budget per day: US$40 - $150

Responsible Travel

Florence is one of the most beautiful cities in Italy to explore. The perfect place with a fantastic blend of nature and culture, it is a magical place to visit. The home to the masterpieces of Renaissance culture, art, and architecture, Florence is the capital of Italy's Tuscany Region.

With a population of an average of 1.7 million people, the land is one of the Roman Era's prominent places. With millions of tourists visiting the city yearly, UNESCO declared the Historic Centre of Florence a World Heritage Site in 1982. Playing an important part to make people aware of Italian fashion, this place holds quite a lot of significance.

The birthplace of the Renaissance movement, the city has been home to some of the most notable figures in history that include Machiavelli, Lorenzo Medici, Dante, Michelangelo, Donatello, Galileo, and Raphael. Additionally, being a city with a rich culture and ancient architecture, Forbes has listed Florence as one of the most beautiful cities worldwide.

Tourism is the primary sector that contributes to the economy of the place. The fascinating part is that the number of travelers visiting Florence outnumbers the local inhabitants from April to October. That is a fascinating fact that makes the city one of the prominent places to add to the bucket list to explore.

A city as beautiful as Florence and one with a culture and history so rich needs to be traveled responsibly to assure that the place remains gorgeous and lively. The key points to focus on while you travel to the city are:

  • Preserve the landmarks: The city is one with a rich history and culture. With the fantastic architecture, it is essential to keep in mind that no damage is caused to the beautiful landmarks you visit to explore them. Do not write or scribble on any walls. Do not throw trash and just be respectful of these places in general.
  • Respect the local culture: To experience Florence to the best, it is better to mix with the local people and culture. This will offer you a chance to peep into the locals' lives and know more about them. Learn more about them and even if their culture and lifestyle vastly differs from yours, always respect it.

The main economic activity of the place is tourism. At the same time, the people of Italy are known for their warm, welcoming nature. So while you travel around, make sure to greet and meet all with a smiling face to double your happy experiences.

  • Shop Local: Being a culturally and historically rich city, the art you will find here is unique and rich. While you plan to buy some souvenirs, get them from the local craftsmen and artisans, and make sure not to bargain, as art demands a high level of skills.
  • Try the local food: Refrain yourself from buying junk or fast food. Experience the mouth-watering local delicacies of Florence while you explore and travel the city. This will not only support local restaurants owners but you will also not be giving your money to big conglomerates who contribute to the problem of pollution on a much larger scale.
  • Do not litter: The city is focused on waste management, and the locals and government are keen to keep their streets clean. Make sure not to litter the place while you travel. Use the bins installed to throw garbage.
  • Explore: While you explore the city, make sure to reach the unexplored local areas and markets to peep into the recall culture and lifestyle of the place.
  • Be respectful: Think ethically about the attractions. Since the place is one with innumerable tourists, it might take time to reach the line's end. Keep patience and be assured the result would be mesmerizing.
  • Stay at a green hotel: Book your stay in a hotel that is eco-friendly with all the amenities you need. It will ensure a better and healthier stay with no harm to the environment.
  • Recycle: Deduce or instead abandon the use of plastics to make your travel surreal. Prefer to carry a reusable water bottle with you while you travel.
  • Choose eco friendly travel options: Prefer to go traveling by electric vehicles, bicycle, or on foot. Utilize the mode that emits less pollution and so reduce the carbon trail as well.
  • Use less paper: Until required, refrain from printing your travel documents and the rest of the things. Instead, try using the softcopy format as it will ensure not only a greener trip but also no waste generation.
  • Spread awareness: The best you can do is to make your fellow travelers aware of responsible travel. It will keep the beauty of the city intact while you explore. Being a responsible traveler, it is the unsaid duty to maintain the aesthetic beauty of the place you are researching.


Air Quality and Pollution

Air pollution is one of the various issues and significant concerns that Italy is facing today. With the growth of the industries and the increasing number of vehicles, pollution is also increasing at an alarming state. Additionally, Florence being a city with high tourism, the problem of pollution is very significant.

Florence was one of the most polluted cities in Italy back in 2011. When the analysis of the PM10 in the pollution was conducted, the results for Florence shocked the government. The amount of PM10 in the air was 50 times higher than the national law allowed at the time, making it the top polluted country. It was known to breathe the most toxic and polluted air of Italy here.

But with time and the efforts of the government and locals, the scenario has changed. The primary cause of the pollutant was industrial and urban pollution. With the steps taken, the government has tried hard to reduce pollution. The practices imposed included:

  • Building parks and gardens in the city to make it healthier
  • Relocating of industries away from the city
  • Better and improved construction design for better space management
  • Using Solar Energy
  • Promoting public transport and reducing the use of cars
  • Initiating the use of eco-friendly vehicles like electric cars or solar-powered cars

Although the government is taking measures to control the pollution levels, a lot more needs to be done. The current statistics from the World Health Organization for air pollution in Florence are:

  • PM10 - 22
  • PM2.5 - 15
  • PM10 Pollution Level - Low to Medium
  • Pollution Index: 49.03
  • Pollution Exp Scale: 82.74

The city of Florence's overall air pollution level is 47.32, which is considered to be a comparatively moderate level. The air quality is 52.68 at Florence, which makes the air moderately fit to breathe. As suggested by the government, the rate of green parks and gardens has been raised to 66, which is one of the prime factors assisting in pollution reduction.

With the government's policies and practices, the city is recovering from the air pollution and is fast moving towards high-quality air. The planting of the Tillandsia plants, or air plants, is one of the major initiatives that has been taken into consideration.

Being a responsible traveler, it is the prime duty to make sure no addition to the pollution of the pollution causing agents are created while you travel. Rather than booking a private car to explore, it is better to go for the public transport of eco-friendly vehicles to ensure no increase in pollution.

Make sure to book your stay in an eco-friendly and sustainable hotel that focuses on the ideas of reusability and recycling. While you travel, make sure to help your fellow travelers as well to travel responsibly. A keen eye on ensuring the reduction in the negative or the carbon trail while you explore Florence's city will be the most significant contribution to improve the overall air quality.


Respect the Culture

Italy's art is one of the finest and has attracted the attention of people from around the world. It has been a keen interest of art lovers. The main reason behind this is that Italy's art is more linked to its rich culture and religion.

Florence is the most visited city in Italy, which is one with rich art and culture. For instance, if you travel the city in summer, there will be many music festivals, cinemas, dances, and theaters going on, which will give you a peek into the culture and art of the city. With the spectacular view of the building and the architecture depicting the past eras, the place is enlightening. "The capital of Art" is another name of Florence. While most of the art here is inspired by the religion itself, the culture is a fascinating one. With numerous museums and art galleries, such as the Uffizi Gallery and the Palazzo Pitti, and one can still see the uncanny influence of the city in the fields of art, culture, and politics.

The locals of the city take pride in their culture. With so many museums and galleries that portray the stories of the past and sings about the unsung heroes and the culture and tradition of Florence, the place is breathtaking. With the perfect blend and opportunity to do and see something new, Florence is the finest of what Italy has to offer.

To respect the culture of the city, focus on points like:

  • Some of the most famous artists of history like Dante and Michelangelo were born here. It is a better idea to know research a little about the art because local people give a great deal of importance to art and culture. Do not frown upon it and always try to be respectful towards their art and craft.
  • While you plan on visiting the religious sites like churches etc, ensure to dress well and follow the tradition.
  • As per UNESCO, 60% of the world's art are located in Italy, and nearly half of it is in Florence. So, yes, the culture here is quite diverse and unique which means you might have a lot of questions as well about things, while it is ok to be inquisitive, make sure you do not come across as nosy and rude.
  • The place is one with rich music and dance forms, so while you explore the city, participate in the theaters, concerts, or drama going on and ensure to feel the beauty of the tradition here.
  • Being warm and friendly, people are welcoming, so ensure to be polite and soft-spoken.
  • Being a multicultural place, explore it with an open heart and soul.
  • Try to blend with the people and their culture, and if you get a chance to learn the local language or rather just a few words to show gratitude to locals, for their hospitality.


Top 10 Places to Visit

With its rich history and fantastic architecture, the places to explore and visit Florence range from parks to beaches, museums to the Cathedral, and a lot more. With the touch of Roman architecture in numerous buildings, the aesthetic of the city is mesmerizing. The birthplace of Renaissance art and the place with some of the critical heritage sites as per UNESCO, Florence is one of the best tourist destinations to explore.

The beauty of the place is that when you explore and visit these majestic areas, you will experience the culture and tradition in an even more profound sense. The city has something for every traveler, be it the one who loves architecture or one who loves to dive deep in history, or someone who is just looking for a relaxing park, the city has innumerable places for all.

Florence is undoubtedly an Italian city that can entice every traveler because of its diverse cultural and historic locations including places to shop and explore. While there are unlimited places to visit, the best places to chart down to explore are:

  • Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore: The most famous Cathedral globally, this place is also known as the Florence Cathedral or just the Duomo Di Firenze. Constructed in 1436, this is located in the center of the old city. The city's centerpiece is one of the finest examples of architecture, with the exterior facade built of marble and adorned with red, pink, and green polychrome designs. Running 463 steps will take you to the top of the dome, where there is a lantern. With the beautiful exterior and grandeur interior decorated with unique pieces, the Cathedral is mesmerizing.
  • The Uffizi: If you are an art lover, then this is the place to visit. With the fantastic artwork, this is the most acceptable place when one wishes to look for museums. The real treasure of Renaissance Art, this Museum is located near the Piazza Della Signoria. Not only this, the place in itself is architecturally beautiful and significant, making it even more mesmerizing. Designed by the Italian painter Giorgio Vasari, the Museum is simply fantastic, which houses arts like The Baptism of Christ by Da Vinci, the Adoration of the Magi by Botticelli, and the Sacrifice of Isaac by Caravaggio.
  • Giotto's Campanile: The massive Gothic Architecture is one of the most prominent and finest buildings in the city. Split into five distinct levels; the building has a beautiful exterior of polychrome marble decoration with stunning pink and green colors. With 414 steps, reaching the top of the tower, one will see the complete view of the city and the Duomo. The building was jeweled with various cultures, artwork, and decorated panels, making the place a fantastic piece of art in the Renaissance period.
  • Palazzo Vecchio: Another place with great importance and significance in the history of Florence. The administrative building is the town hall or the city hall and also the home for the Medici family. With magnificent artwork and rooms full of frescoes, this building is no less than a dream world out of a storybook. Designed to look like a castle, the building is built in a square shape and is also one with a large bell tower. The rooms' interior is amazingly decorated with sublime pieces of art like The Hercules Room and The Room of Cybele.
  • Basilica of Santa Croce: The beautiful and one of the finest examples of architecture, the Basilica is quite similar to Duomo in construction. Remarking Renaissance art, the place is decorated with white marble, carved with pink, green, and red marble polychrome panels. The Basilica is the home to the tombs of the most famous artists in history, including Galileo, Michelangelo, and Machiavelli.
  • Baptistery of St. John: the part of the trio of buildings, this is associated with the Florence Cathedral and Basilica of Santa Croce. Although the building sits separately like the other two, the exterior of the building is quite similar to the previous two. Depicting the beautiful Florentine design's exterior features, this Baptistery depicts various religious scenes and human virtues. With the three sets of bronze doors leading inside the Baptistery, the inside is even more beautiful with the stunning golden Byzantine-style fresco covering the ceiling and upper wall and depicting the stories from the Bible and Genesis.
  • Basilica di San Lorenzo: A perfect place to offer your prayers to the almighty and seek his divine blessings, this Basilica was designed under the Medici Family, a powerful family that ruled the city of Florence during the Renaissance period. This Church is comparatively different from the other buildings and is made of a terracotta tiled roof. The inside of the Church is beautifully decorated with a gold and white artistic ceiling and a plethora of frescoes and sculptures which reflect the uncanny mix of colors and patterns. The most interesting fact about the place is that several people from the Medici family are buried in tombs here, which makes the chapel quite exquisite.
  • Palazzo Pitti: Standing with all beauty, this is one of the most delicate constructions dating back to the 1400s on the Southern Banks of the River Arno. Once home to the powerful Medici Family, this is now a museum with the Renaissance artwork's relics. With the highly decorated galleries and the artwork, the place is magnificent. The Jupiter room of the Museum is filled with frescoes and the famous Veiled Lady by Raphael. Some other notable artists that are featured in museums include Titian, Rubens, Caravaggio, and Veronese.
  • Church of Santa Maria Novella: A place similar to the Florence Cathedral and the Basilica of Santa Croce, this Church is beautifully designed and decorated. The inside of the Church is mesmerizing with various chapels dedicated to the Renaissance period's prominent families. The detailed work over the walls and ceilings are some of the notable artworks of famous artists like Botticelli and Ghiberti.
  • Boboli Gardens: Looking for a place to relax and feel the fresh air, then the Boboli gardens are a perfect choice. Stretched for an area of 45,000 square meters, the garden is immensely beautiful with a classy walkable neighborhood. Built-in the 16th century, the garden has various sections that include the main lawn with a fountain and obelisk, a selection of worldly trees, plants, and flowers, and several large ponds with their fantastic water features. A place perfect for escaping the world's chaos and finding peace in solace, the Boboli gardens are beautifully designed with natural specimens.
View of Basilica of Santa Croce from Giotto's Bell Tower


Explore

A city as beautiful as Florence is one filled with historically rich and majestic areas which are worth exploring. Ranging from the fantastic parks to the buildings illuminating the Renaissance period's stories, Florence is breathtaking. While one wishes to explore the city, the options offered include the parks, beaches, museums, historical buildings and landmarks, remarkable monuments, and a lot more.

The terrace above the city known as Piazzale Michelangelo is a must visit if you want to see a 360 degree view of the city

Undoubtedly, the city is one jeweled tourist spot with something great to offer to every traveler. But while you travel and explore the places, make sure not to pollute or litter the trail. Ensure to maintain the aesthetic beauty of the place by avoiding or reducing your carbon footprints.


City Parks

While you are in the city and willing to explore the parks, the presented options are uncanny. With the government's aim to reduce pollution, the parks that are built are relatively high here. Some of the remarkable parks to explore are:

  • Giardino Bardini: Composed of English woods, an Italian garden, and fruit orchards protected by the medieval city walls, the garden looks like a fairyland in Spring season when the violet wisterias bloom, wrapping around the pergolas, creating a fantastic view. The enchanted garden covers four-hectare.
  • The Rose Garden: A botanical garden stretching to an area of 2.5 acres, the park is filled with more than 30 different roses, lemon trees, and a Japanese garden. The latest addition to the park is that it is decorated with 12 sculptures of late Belgian artist Jean-Michel Folon.
  • The Iris Garden: Located on the end of Piazzale Michelangelo to Giardino Delle Rose, this garden is home to iris flowers spread in an area of 2.5 hectares. Jeweled with 250 endangered species of iris plants, the garden offers the most beautiful aesthetic views.
  • Giardino Della Gherardesca: Located on the Four Seasons Hotel's grounds, this garden is one spreading to 4.5 acres of land. With the entirely managed and manicured lawns, romantic walkways, and majestic trees, this garden is gorgeous, designed by Italian politician and author Bartolomeo Scala.
  • Villa Stibbert: A bit different from the rest of the gardens, is more of calming English themed gardens that are styled in a manner to offer the sense of medieval romanticism, with beautiful, evocative temples, caves, sparkly ponds with goldfish and turtles, and an English-style garden with 56 plant species.
  • Torrigiani Gardens: Hidden in the heart of the Oltrarno neighborhood of Florence, this garden spreads to an area of seven hectares. The privately-owned botanical garden is one with the woods, temples, statues, rolling green hills, and picturesque bridges.
The beautiful Torrigiani Gardens


National Parks

While you look to explore the National Parks in Florence, the option that is available to you to explore include:

  • The Casentinesi Forest National Park: A National park spanning an area of 36400 hectares. This park stretches across Florence and Arezzo's Provinces and is the largest national park in all of Italy. With the valleys and forests that are home to numerous plants and wildlife like Apennine wolves, boar, deer, golden eagles, and red foxes, the national park is uncanny. The major attractions inside the park include the Sanctuary of La Verna and the Hermitage of Camaldoli.
The Casentinesi Forest National Park

If you are looking for other walkable or bikeable places or lush green valleys, you can explore The Mugello Valley, which is to the north of Florence, a perfect getaway for countryside walks and hikes.


Beaches

While the city is jeweled with all kinds of beauty, there are no beaches in the city. However, if you are looking for a beach, then do not worry, as there are numerous beaches in the nearby provinces which can easily be accessed via a train. You can plan a trip to the beach and spend an entire day on the beach and exploring the surrounding area.

The best beaches to visit near Florence are:

  • Viareggio: Located in the Province of Lucca, the beach is one with white sands and some amazing restaurants. It can be easily reached in an hour by train or car.
  • Forte Dei Marmi: One can reach this beautiful beach in just one and a half hour journey by train. The most expensive beach in Florence is stunning.
  • Castiglioncello: This beach is part of the Etruscan Coastline and is surrounded by pine woods and small rocky bays. This can be touched by a train journey of one hour forty minutes.
  • San Vincenzo: Located in Tuscany's Etruscan area, this beach is perfect for ones who love nature and water sports. While the beach is a bit far as it takes an average of a two-hour train journey and 700 meters of walking distance to reach, the experience it offers is uncanny.
  • Follonica: With the crystal clear waters and the beautiful white sand, this beach is just great. A train journey of two and a half hours is needed to reach here; the experience it offers is uncanny.
The very busy and beautiful Castiglioncello beach


Landmarks

The city of Florence is decorated with a plethora of landmarks and monuments. While you look to explore the city, the most striking landmarks to visit are:

  • Ponte Vecchio: A beautiful and extremely old and famous bridge on the river Arno, the bridge offers a fantastic view of the various souvenir shops surrounding it.
  • Piazza Della Signoria: The main square located to the south of the Piazza del Duomo, and the home to the beautiful fountain of Neptune and the Loggia Dei Lanzi that is home to various Renaissance sculptures including Perseus, Menelaus, and Hercules; this square is uncanny.
  • Piazzale Michelangelo: This Square is the one that offers the best view of Florence and the Cathedral. Located on the hill near the Boboli Gardens and the Palazzo Pitti, the square houses David's beautiful Bronze statue.
  • San Miniato al Monte: A beautiful Renaissance architecture, this Church is one with the most amazing views. Decorated with the white and green marble front facade, the interior is decorated with frescos, artwork, and marble columns.
  • Piazza del Duomo: The central squares in the city, this is the most thriving and busy streets of Florence. The street is filled with shops, restaurants and cafes, and various souvenir stalls.
  • Corridoio Vasariano: This was once a private walkway for Cosimo de Medici from the Palazzo Pitti to the Palazzo Vecchio, the interiors of which is decorated with amazing artwork and refurbished paintings. Walkthrough the corridor to have a look at the amazing art.
  • Forte di Belvedere: Next to the Boboli gardens, this is the most massive fort with fantastic architecture and Renaissance fortification, making it even more breathtaking.
  • Statue of David: Can be found in Galleria dell'Accademia and made by legendary artist Michelangelo, it has a replica that stands on the entrance of the Palazzo Vecchio.
The exterior of San Miniato al Monte


Museums

Florence is home to some of the best museums in the world. The ones that you should definitely not miss include:

  • Bargello Museum: Located to the northeast side of the Piazza Della Signoria, this Museum includes various sculptures by different artists including David by Donatello, Bacchus by Michelangelo, and a bust of Christ by Lombardo.
  • Galleria dell'Accademia: Situated near the Piazza del Duomo and the Basilica di San Lorenzo, this art gallery is considered to be an important museum of Florence. It has an amazing collection which includes various crucial artworks like the original Michelangelo's David sculpture and an array of musical instruments.
  • Ospedale Degli Innocenti: A beautiful museum designed by Brunelleschi houses pieces by Botticelli and Ghirlandaio and offers a peep into six centuries of history.
  • Museo Novecento: A museum unique in all aspects is dedicated to the Italian art of the 20th and the 21st century. Showcasing more than 400 artworks, this Museum is one with a great story. Uplifted by the Art historian Carlo Ludovico Ragghianti after a flood that destroyed Florence, this Museum is a house for local and international artists.
  • Gucci Garden: Opened on the 90th anniversary of the Gucci Fashion house in 2011, this Museum features iconic pieces from scarves to luggage to HilarySwank'ss iconic dress.
  • Museo Salvatore Ferragamo: A museum so unique and magnificent that will amaze you. The story of the fashion museum tells SalvatoreFerragamo'ss story, one of the finest shoemakers of the fashion industry, with photos and more.
Inside the gorgeous Bargello Museum


Eat

While the beauty of renaissance art and the amazing parks and beaches in Florence can be mesmerising to explore, your trip to the city is incomplete without tasting the mouth-watering local delicacies. A huge part of Italian culture is the food and you will not find authentic Italian cuisine anywhere else in the world except for Italy itself. It is just not the same anywhere else so do not miss out on the wonderful gastronomical experience that you can have while in Florence.

The traditional Pesto Patsa in Florence

Home to the Italian delicacies and the hub for the regional Tuscan cuisine, the food offered at Florence is impressive. The amazing blend of the ingredients and spices the food here is simple yet delicious.

The most common meals in Florence include bread and olive oil. While the food presented in Florence is one with significant ingredients of leguminous vegetables and meat, Florence's food is healthy and delicious. Soups and pasta hold a very crucial part in the meal as well.

So, if you are looking for the same places to grab a meal and enjoy, then the best places to explore in Florence are listed down for you.


Traditional Local Restaurants

The perfect blend of the aromatic herbs, bread, soup, vegetables, and meat, the local restaurants that offer the uncanny taste of Florence's local delicacies are numerous. Prepared with care and presented amazingly, the food offered at these restaurants is lip-smacking.

So, if you are looking to taste the local delicacies at Florence, the best traditional restaurants to explore are:

  • Trattoria Da Burde Firenze
  • Trattoria Sabatino
  • Ristorante Il Guscio
  • Culinaria Bistro
  • Osteria al 3 E
  • La Buchetta Food & Wine Restaurant
  • Le Cappelle Medicee ristorante enoteca
  • Trattoria Cammillo
  • Casa del Vino Firenze
  • Trattoria Sergio Gozzi


Vegetarian and Vegan

Do you love to have vegan and vegetarian food? If so, then Florence is going to tickle your tastebuds. While the main ingredient in the food includes vegetables, many restaurants offer the yummiest vegan and vegetarian delicacies.

The best vegan and vegetarian restaurants to explore in Florence are:

  • PappaGioia
  • Il Vegano - Firenze
  • Il Vegetariano
  • RAW
  • L'OV Osteria Vegetariana
  • Giumella Gastronomia Vegana
  • Nirvana Veg Restaurant Firenze
  • La Raccolta - Ristorante Biomarket Vegetariano Firenze
  • Universo Vegano
  • eg & Veg - Mercato Centrale Firenze
  • I'Pizzacchiere Firenze
  • Silvana vegan rest
  • Ramerino
  • Il Desco Bistrot


Street Food

Looking to taste Florence's local street food delicacies, the place is a real treasure for the mouth-watering treats. While significant food includes bread, meat, and vegetables, the best places to try street food include:

  • Nerbone at Mercato Centrale: Located near the San Lorenzo neighborhood, this is an uncanny place for the typical local street food.
  • All'Anticoo Vinaio: Just next to the Uffizi Museum, this place is the best to taste panino, the local delicacy of Florence.
  • Da" Vinattieri: Just a few steps from the National Museum of Bargello, the place is the best spot to taste trippa and lampredotto.
  • Antico Trippaio: An authentic Tuscan food truck best tastes the traditional Florentine delicacies.

Additionally, if you are looking to taste the famous street delicacies, you must try options for you include:

  • Panino con il Lampredotto: A delicacy prepared with the abomasum, or a cow's fourth and cooked with tomatoes, onions, celery, and parsley until meltingly tender.
  • Panino con Bollito: A beef brisket served with salsa verde and chili.
  • Schiacciata: Oily and salty bread with herbs, cooked in a wood oven to reach the best crisp.
  • Crostini: A small slice of bread with the topping of meat, vegetables, or both mixed with cheese.
  • Ravioli Nudi: A spinach and ricotta filling without the pasta served with butter or tomato sauce.
  • Fettunta: A greased slice of bread blended with the taste of garlic.
  • Fagioli: The leguminous white beans served with garlic, sage, and peppercorn.
  • Pappardelle Sulla Lepre: A thick pasta served with the hare sauce.
  • Pappa Al Pomorodo: A culinary triumph of Tuscan region, this is bread, olive oil, tomatoes, and basil.
The classic bread Schiacciata made with herbs


Drink

Florence is one of the most beautiful places to explore with the never-ending trails of beautiful architecture and the amazing places to taste the regional delicacies. While you visit this place and are looking to quench your thirst, then the choices are numerous.

Right from the coffee to the classic wines, the city has numerous places to quench your thirst.


Tap-water

Water is the base of all life systems. While one travels to any city or a new place, water is the prime need that is required. To quench the thirst, there is no drink better than water.

While the local governing authorities manage the water available in Florence, the quality of the tap water is maintained at its peak. The primary source of tap water in Florence is the surface water of the Arno river, which is treated by Publiacqua at their Anconella plant.

Drinking-Water Quality and Accessibility is very high at 73, making the water of Florence perfectly fine to be consumed. Simultaneously, the overall water quality is high at 64, as per Numbeo, which makes the consumption of tap water comfortable for consumption.

Although the tap water in the city is safe to drink, it is advisable that one should go for the packaged water to ensure no effect is being made on the health. And if you wish to consume tap-water, it is better to drink the water after being boiled.


Organic Cafés

Florence is an uncanny place linked to low pollution, high-quality drinking water, and impressive architecture to explore. The city is full of some amazing cafes and even organic spots to have a sip of coffee. The best organic cafes in Florence are:

  • TREE CAFÉ Fresh Juice & Organic Products
  • SimBiosi Organic Cafe & Lovely Bistro
  • Carduccio - Il Salotto Bio
  • Albero Cafe Fresh Juice And Organic Products
  • Shake Café
  • Libreria Brac
  • Dolci e Dolcezze
  • Vivoli Gelato
  • Caffé Gilli


Breweries

If you are willing to taste some locally made wines and beers, there is no place better than Italy. One of the finest destinations for classy wines and beers, the best breweries of Florence to visit are:

  • Archea Brewery
  • King Grizzly
  • Mostodolce Firenze
  • Birreria Art. 17
  • Pint of View
  • Diorama
  • Birreria Fiorentina


Activities

Once you are done exploring the Renaissance art, the amazing architecture beauties, the parks, beaches, and the museums to explore the history, and have tasted the local delicacies, it is the time to go for some fun adrenaline rush activities by exploring the amazing trails in Florence.

So, once you are done with exploring the beaches and tasting its delicacies, you can indeed get involved in the adrenaline rush activities like the ones listed down for you:

  • Explore the stunning Fiesole hills
  • Go skydiving
  • Try Urban rafting in Florence
  • Explore the countryside on the horseback riding trip
  • Stroll around the Mugello Valley
  • Go for mountaineering on the Elba Island
  • Participate in the water sports at the beaches

So, if you are looking forward to having a fun day, they prefer to join some group or the locals to enjoy it to the fullest. A fun day with the group will make you relaxed and calm and allow you to feel lighthearted.


Yoga and Retreats

A calm soul in a happy body is the best combination. Yoga is one of the ancient practices that focus on the practice of meditation and exercise to calm the mind and soul of the person. The ultimate aim of yoga is to attain the peace and calmness of the soul.

If you are looking for a place to gain internal peace and explore yourself, with the help of meditation and yoga, the best retreat centers to visit in Florence are:

  • Olistic Network: Centro eccellenza yoga Firenze
  • Istituto Yoga Moksha a.s.d.c.
  • Center Yoga Florence - Art of Living Happiness Center
  • Yoga Center Florence
  • Italia Power Yoga

Take out some time for the self and dive into the beautiful Yoga session that will offer you the calmness of mind and soul at the most.


Accommodation

Having a warm and soothing place with welcoming people to live is the best part of any travel experience. Florence is one with rich tourism and hence offers some of the finest hotels to stay.

Be it a solo traveler, or one with family, or even friends; the city has the best hotels to offer to its ever visitors. From the hotels to Couchsurfing's option, the list of accommodation facilities that Florence offers is uncanny.

Most of Florence's hotels were previous architecture, so you will find the uncanny touch of Renaissance architecture and art. While the inner part will be more linked to the same, the experience you will get will be doubled.

From the hotels offering all the basic amenities to the luxury living facilities, it is essential to first know the budget of the stay. Additionally, the hotels and other similar inns give you free Internet, Gym, and Security Lockers, and other related facilities that will make your stay surreal.


Green Hotels

With the pristine location and unique places to explore, the stay options that are available in Florence are brilliant. While eco-accommodation is comparatively a new idea, it is mainly linked to the concept of offering all the amenities to guests and, at the same, keeping the environment surrounding at best.

The primary notion behind the concept of reducing, reuse, and recycling will lessen the carbon trail and ensure a better and nourishing environment. Small steps like shifting to the use of paper towels or paper cups in place of the plastic cups can be a great deal. Using solar energy to illuminate the hotel can be an outstanding achievement.

The hotels that offer the eco-friendly stay with all the amenities and with the friendly staff in Florence are:

  • La Piccola Maison
  • San Lorenzo affittacamere
  • Le Quattro Mura Exclusive
  • Messori Suites
  • Art Hotel Villa Agape


Hostels and Guest Houses

If you are a person who is traveling solo or are looking for a bit longer stay, then booking the hostel or a guest house is a better idea. These places are comparatively budget-friendly and offer the best chance to meet and befriend new people.

Usually, the hostels are accommodated by solo travelers, so this is an excellent opportunity to meet like-minded people and maybe get a chance to create a group to explore the city with fun.

The best hostels and guest houses to book in Florence are:

  • My Guest in Florence
  • New Generation Hostel Florence
  • Academy Hostel Florence
  • Santa Monaca Hostel
  • Guest HouseL'Arancetoo


Apartments

An extended stay demands a place with no interruptions. If you are in Florence for a more extended stay or prefer to prepare your meal, staying in apartments is better. The apartments with all the necessary amenities like kitchen, Wi-fi, parking, wash area, sitting area, and a friendly environment that are available in Florence to book are:

  • M7 Contemporary Apartments
  • Design Apartments Florence- Florence City Center
  • Florence Art Apartments
  • Celeste's House Serviced Apartments
  • Pitti Luxury Apartments to Rent, Florence


Couchsurfing

Couchsurfing is a relatively new concept that is gaining wide popularity. The idea behind this is to book the stay with the local people, which will offer a greater chance to mix with the people and know more about the place's culture and traditions.

Florence being a hot tourist destination offers travelers the opportunity to book their stay as the couch surfer. Although there are numerous online portals that provide the choice to book your stay, it is important to know about the host before booking the stay.

Preliminary information about what the host expects is one of the best options to book a stay that will offer a surreal and best experience. The chance to know about the locals' culture and tradition while being a couch surfer is the highest.


Camping

If you are one of those who love to spend some time in the woods or on the camping grounds gazing at the endless series of stars in the sky, then the best camping grounds and resorts in Florence that will be best to book are:

  • Camping Village Panoramico Fiesole
  • Firenze Camping in Town


How to Get There

Exploring new places is fun, but traveling is the most hectic part. While there are many options available to travel and reach the destination, the best ones are those that offer comfort and affordable traveling.

Florence is an important tourist destination, is well connected with all the modes, be it road, air, or rails from the rest of the world. For the best journey, keep a neck su[pport to avoid jerks, and if you love books or music, do carry them as well.


Air

Amerigo Vespucci Airport, which is just 5 kilometers from the city, is well connected by multiple domestic and international flights connecting the prime city; reaching Florence by air is one of the most convenient modes.

Aerial view of the Amerigo Vespucci Airport


Bus

The road connectivity with the major towns of Italy and some places in Europe is really catchy here. SITA bus station connects Florence to the towns of Siena, Assisi in Umbria, Montepulciano, Greve in Chianti, Volterra, and San Gimignano. Simultaneously, highways like A1, A11, and S2 connect various major cities of Europe to Florence.

Bus in Florence


Train

If you are looking to travel by train, then the central railway station is Santa Maria Novella Station, which connects various European cities to Florence.

Train in Florence


Hitchhiking

Hitchhiking is taking a lift from some of the travelers you meet on the way. Being a city with warm people and one of the prime tourist destinations, hitchhiking is accessible here. While you plan to get hitchhiked, it is better to make the ride owner aware of where you are heading and the monetary offering you can make.

Make sure to know about and be cautious about getting avoided being picked by the goons. While you wish to go hitchhiking, a small wave of the hand will be enough for you to get the lift.


Others

Apart from the options mentioned, the other ways to reach Florence include booking a private taxi or cab. Additionally, one can get the ticket booked on a tourist bus that is going to Florence, as it will give you a chance to meet like-minded travelers as well.


Moving Around

The idea of ecotourism is linked to traveling in a manner that the carbon trails are reduced. The idea of undertaking the eco-friendly options to explore the city is directly linked to ensuring a surreal travel experience and focuses on reducing the damaging trails or carbon footprints.


Walk

Being a city with rich architecture and amazing streets, exploring on foot is really blissful. One can easily walk through the streets of Florence.


Bicycle

The city of Florence is more inclined towards creating a green space. There are numerous bike rental points that offer you a chance to get a bike to travel through the city. The bike trails in Florence are beautiful and will provide you with an excellent opportunity for site exploration.


Electronic Vehicles

While electric vehicles are a comparatively new concept for most places, Florence is a bit different here. There are a number of rental shops that allow you to rent electric cars to explore the city. This is the best option as this will reduce the carbon trails and ensure a surreal travel experience.


Public Bus

Using a public bus to travel and explore the city is the best option. It will offer a chance to meet the locals. The City Buses are run by ATAF and LI-NEA and one of the best-budgeted options to book.


Tram, Train and Subway

Florence got its first tram in 2010. While the tram connects a few of Florence's prominent places, the two tram lines T1and T2 connects the prime location and are one of the cheapest options to travel.


Sustainable Shopping

No trip is complete without a little shopping. Buying souvenirs and gifts for friends and relatives while you visit a new place is one which has no substitute. Florence is one of the most artistically and architecturally significant cities, and ahead, the chances of buying the souvenirs in the form of the local art icons are unmatched.

Shopping is real fun in Florence and when you plan to buy one from the local artisans, make sure not to bargain as the art demands patience and skills. Some of the best local markets that will offer you authentic and genuine products and will surprise you are listed down for you.


Food Markets

Planning to stay for an extended period in Florence? Then there is an unsaid need to explore the local food market that will offer you all the authentic and high-quality food ingredients to make your meal. The local market is perfect to buy fresh fruits, vegetables, and even meat.

The best food market of Florence to visit and experience the local aromas are:

  • Mercato Centrale
  • Sant'Ambrogioo Market
Inside the Mercato Centrale


Flea Markets

Florence is the place with some of the most acceptable market areas to shop for souvenirs. The uncanny pieces of art and design, the best flea markets to explore in Florence are:

  • Piazza Santo Spirito
  • La Mecca contovendita
  • Mercatopoli Firenze Legnaia
  • Ditutto Dipiu Mercatinodell'Usatoo Firenze
  • Leather shops and markets
Piazza Santo Spirito


Second Hand Stores

The second-hand stores or the recycled stores mainly deal with books, clothes, electronics, or other related consumer goods. The thrift store's main benefit is that the products they offer are at a meager price. So, when you are looking to buy something for a limited period of use, then shopping at a second-hand store in Florence is the best idea. The stores include:

  • Mercatino di Firenze di Altieri Antonio
  • Street Doing Vintage Couture


Eco-Fashion

Eco-fashion is a relatively new concept. The idea is to create dresses and jewelry with eco-friendly inputs like natural fibers, dyes, and recycled clothes to reduce the eco-waste. Converting the worn-out products to high-end fashion accessories, including bags or shoes, the concept of eco-fashion is most refined.

While the concept is new, it is still on the verge of gaining popularity in Florence as people move towards eco-friendly ideas. Some of the stores that focus on the same are:

  • Boutique Nadine
  • ECHO


Recycling

The basic idea behind recycling is to reduce waste. Various products like the used tires, plastic bottles, and even used books can be reused and recycled into other products like bags, shoes, or artistic writing pads. While the idea is to reduce the carbon footprint and effect on the environment, it also offers the novel opportunity to put the things to use.

Florence is a city that mainly focuses on residential waste recycling. The concept followed by the government here includes Single Stream Recycling, wherein all the recyclable materials are collected in one single bin.

So, while you travel, the island focuses on using recyclable articles compared to those that are hard to recycle and reuse. Also, make your fellow travelers aware of the same and try to use the recyclable products to the maximum.


Waste

Florence is a prime tourist destination, and hence the waste that is generated here is relatively high. According to the Garbage Disposal Satisfaction, which is rated at 55, and Clean and Tidy, which is rated at 57 by Numbeo, Florence's city is ranked at moderate.

This reflects that the city has a sufficient and well-managed waste disposal system. With the efforts of locals and government, the same has been possible. So, while you travel, the city ensures not to generate waste that can hamper the aesthetics of the city.

While you explore the city, make the fellow travelers aware of waste management and make mindful of reducing the waste and polluting the trails.


Work and Study Abroad

Florence is one of the finest places if you are looking forward to any field that directly relates to hospitality. Since the city is a prime tourist destination, the number of opportunities one can get in the hospitality sector is immense. At the same time, the most common occasion of the people here includes waiters, bartenders, porters, chefs, tour guides, drivers, and receptionists.

The city also offers an excellent opportunity for the Expats. With tourism being the prime industry, the opportunities here are maximum. Simultaneously, the growth of the professional and finance-related sectors offers more significant opportunities to the people willing to work in Florence. Additionally, if you are into agriculture or viticulture, then the opportunities on the outskirts are immense.

As many people love the culture and tradition of Italy, they do prefer to work here. Another reason being a city so warm, open, and welcoming, the opportunities of growing and flourishing in the professional career are quite good.

A perfect destination for students to learn literature and art; this place has numerous colleges imparting education. Florence is heaven for explorers and travelers and those who wish to work and study here.


Exchange Student

Florence is a culturally and historically rich city and one of the prime cities where American students are found studying. A place with a rich history is one with education so flourishing and advanced that it attracts students from worldwide.

With some of Florence's finest colleges that impart education in various fields like science, medical, management, and multiple areas of art. While some of the courses are taught in the local language, the university has made arrangements to impart the same in English by establishing additional courses.

From the certificate programs to a master's degree, Florence's colleges and universities are prime to offer the Exchange Student facility. Some of the pioneer colleges of Florence include:

  • University of Florence, Italy (Università Degli Studi di Firenze)
  • Florence Cultural Centre For Foreigners
  • Florence Academy of Fine Arts (Accademia di Belle Arti di Firenze)
  • Accademia Italiana in Florence, Italy
  • Florence Institute Of Design International
  • Universita Italian University Line
  • Michelangelo Institute of Florence (Istituto di Lingua e Cultura Italiana "Michelangelo")
  • STAR Studium ArchitecturAe Florence Design School
  • Pixel
Inside the University of Florence


Au Pair

Florence is one of the artistically and culturally prosperous cities to explore. If you wish to explore the place's culture and tradition and are looking for a more extended stay with some stipend, then Au pair is the best option to go for. With the facility to share space with some of the locals, the Au pair in Florence is comparatively a common occurrence.

Although there are numerous sites that offer the facility to apply for an Au pair, it is equally essential to go through the family's terms and conditions before moving ahead. While few families ask for reference and experience, there are few who may not need the one. It is crucial to know the expectations first before agreeing to make a contract. Ask questions in case any doubt persists.

Also, knowing the monetary part as well as knowing the host will make sure that the stay experience remains surreal. A contract will also be filled and signed, ensuring that all the underlying terms and conditions are known to both. Ensure all the points guided by the host, as this will help you avoid any kind of mishaps. Knowing English and the local language will be a plus, as it will ease communication.

Nevertheless, the idea of Au Pair is adequate to meet the locals and blend with their tradition and culture. Make sure to be at your best and respect the culture and explore the place's beauty and experience the best while you stay as the Au pair in Florence.


Volunteering

Volunteering is undoubtedly the best and most meaningful way to give back to society. While you explore the city of Florence, volunteering will offer you an opportunity to use your knowledge and skills to help the community.

While you can volunteer for various organizations and niches ranging from helping the poor to nature and animals or even educating the kids, the essential part is knowing about what you are looking to do. Additionally, learning about the registration formalities beforehand will ensure that you get the best out of it.

Some of the prime volunteering organisation in Florence include:

  • Fondazione S. Sebastiano Della Misericordia Di Firenze
  • Comitato Italiano Unicef
  • Fondazione Camelot Onlus
  • Croce Viola Firenze
  • Comune Di Firenze Asili Nido
  • Associazione Servizi Per Le Professioni Intellettuali

Volunteering opportunities can include teaching English, imparting health awareness, animal rescue, conserving nature, a day at an old-age center, and a lot more. The impact that any of such volunteering services will leave on the local communities will be an unforgettable and rewarding experience.

Leave a positive trail by serving Florence's community, a city with unique places to offer to every traveler.


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