10 Things to Do in Florence on Your Holidays in Tuscany
Planning to spend a considerable amount of time in Florence while on holidays in Tuscany? Here are some of the top things you can do to make the most of your stay.
- Dine on Bistecca Fiorentina – A hearty plate of Florence’s finest beef is the perfect way to give yourself the energy you need to zip around the city. And what better way to enjoy this hearty slab of beef steak than when you…
- Match Your Steak with the Perfect Chianti – Chianti is a storied vintage with a fruity, smoky, medium-bodied texture that’s perfect for the powerfully savoury flavour of Bistecca Fiorentina. Get the classico or riserva vintages if you want a deeper, stronger flavour, although the average Chianti is great if you like a fruitier taste in your red wine.
- Wrap Up Your Meal with Some Gelato – From green tea to almond blends, the many Florentine gelateria are fiercely proud of their creations. It's no surprise then that you'll raise some eyebrows if you use the term ‘ice cream’ to taint these works of culinary art.
- Lose Yourself in the High Art of the Uffizi Gallery – The Uffizi draws many visitors on their holidays in Tuscany – and for good reason. Witness for yourself the collection grand works art that have flourished from the Renaissance, such as Sandro Botecelli’s Birth of Venus and Caravaggio’s Sacrifice of Isaac.
- Pay Your Respects to the Masters – the same artists, inventors, merchants, philosophers and rulers that contributed to the Renaissance were also laid to rest in Florence. Michelangelo, Galileo, Ghiberti, Machiavelli and the Medici family all have memorials in the city – with many buried in artfully decorated graves and mausoleums.
- Savour the Scents of Florence’s Premier Perfumery – The Officina Profumo Farmaceutica di Santa Maria Novella is a combination of chemist, herbalist and perfumery all mixed in one place of olfactory satisfaction - so much so that it has become a museum with its own traditions to share to the world.
- Absorb the Heady Sights and Smells of the Leather Markets – Speaking of smells, you simply must make time to visit the famous leather market of Florence. These outdoor markets are the perfect place to pick up a genuine leather souvenir for yourself or your loved ones back home.
- Visit the Nightlife at Piazza Santo Spirito – Various gigs, events, concerts and celebrations are a common sight in this famous piazza. This is especially true during the summer months, where bars set up to take advantage of the warm climate. This is one event you’ll want to keep your eye on if you go on holidays in Tuscany during summer.
- Relax at the Boboli Gardens - If you’re all tuckered out from your explorations of the city, the Boboli Gardens are the best place to regain your strength. Grassy areas, shady trees, grand fountains, winding paths and hidden grottoes all make for a relaxing (and romantic) getaway.
- Cool Off at the Outdoor Pools – You can pay just a few euros to soak up half a day in the many outdoor pools around Florence. Some pools even open up to the public in the afternoons during the months of July and August.
Keep these top ten experiences in mind, and you’ll be able to make the most of your visit to Florence while on holidays in Tuscany.
Carolyn Spinks is COO of ABTOI - The Association of British Travel Organisers to Italy. If you’re looking for the perfect holidays in Tuscany the LoveItaly website provides destination information, contact details of tour operator members to help plan the best Italian holiday, insider tips, year round special offers and information on everything from beach holidays in Sardinia, cycling in Sicily, to a wedding or honeymoon in Tuscany.
Writer and Online Marketing Manager in London.