In Florence, there are several places of historical importance and there are numerous interesting anecdotes associated with the city. Romans founded Florence during the first century of their rule and the city witnessed dramatic growth between the 12th and 16th century. The Medici family is credited with building majority of the spectacular monuments, buildings and landmarks in Florence. All the structures are in excellent condition even today and tourists from all over the world visit them and marvel at their rich architecture.
Truly, the city is an extremely famous and glamorous for its highly rich history, from the cultural, artistic, economic, financial and commercial point of view and was once the wealthiest city of Europe. Today, the city is called the “Athens of the Middle Ages” and rightly so. With stunning museums, palaces, architectural brilliance, churches, and with ages of tradition of art and culture under its belt, the city is truly a crowning glory in the not only the history of Italy, but that of entire Europe.
When it comes to sightseeing, there is simply no dearth of places that will leave one simply awe-struck. The grandeur, the larger-than-life dimension of the structures, the tinge of history and art, culture associated with everything will simply leave take a heavy toll on the psyche of a tourist.
The skyline of the city is dominated by the famous domed cathedral of Florence - Santa Maria del Fiore, also known as the Duomo. Hence, let our tour start from here. This spectacular structure has been regarded as one of the Heritage Sites by UNESCO. The city center is dominated by an array of medieval walls, and the famous Fountain of Neptune, which is a famous creation of Bartolomeo Ammannati, the famous Italian architect and sculptor.
Other most popular and mind boggling sites of Florence include the Academia, the Baptistery, and the Uffizi. The specialty of these structures is that each of them represents a seamless marriage of medieval, Neoclassical, Baroque, and contemporary architecture. Then there are the stunning churches of Santa Croce and Santa Maria Novella, which are famous for their art galleries, and the San Lorenzo Library, which is famous for the ageless creations of Michelangelo.
Some of the cities date back to the medieval era and are preserved in an almost unchanged form. These streets will lead you to the Arno River. Cross the river and you will reach the new half of the city – known as the Oltrarno. You will have a number of middle aged bridges to cross the river and one of them is Ponte Vecchio or the Old Bridge.
Visit the Pitti Palace and you will get dumbstruck by the vast and spectacular collection of artworks by some of the most celebrated geniuses of the Middle Age. There is the Baboli Garden where you can spend an entire day, or you can visit the San Miniato Church on the top of a hill to get a panoramic view of the entire city.
Other places that are worth of visiting include Piazza della Signoria, Palazzo Medici Riccardi, Palazzo Strozzi, Riccardiana Library, Palazzo Rucellai, Palazzo Davanzati, Palazzo delle Assicurazioni Generali, Palazzo Spini Feroni, Palazzo Antinori, gallery of modern art, Basilica of Santa Maria Novella, Basilica of San Lorenzo, Medici Chapel, Santa Trinita, Santa Felicita, San Gaetano, Badia Fiorentina, San Marco, Florence Charterhouse, San Miniato al Monte, and Santa Maria del Carmine and many others.
Needless to say, the city is home to a number of wonderful hotels, restaurants, bars –each offering the most lustrous dining and lodging facilities.
The city is famous for its cuisines as well. The majority of its cuisines is based on meat. The city is famous for its peasant eating. The most noted dishes include pâté ,prepared out of chicken liver, sliced meats, various types of soups, Chianina beef, Parmesan cheese and the likes.
The city of Florence is has a very structured network of transport like the railway lines, local taxis and ATAF buses that can be found in and around the piazzas. If you are up for some fun and adventure then you can even rent a car and keep exploring the city. The A1 motorway is the best because it connects major Italian cities like Milan, Rome, Bologna, and Naples to Florence. You can even avail the A11 Motorway that connects Pisa, Lucca and other resorts to Florence.
Florence is extremely easy to reach by air or by trains from any part of the world. The city has 2 airports The Florence Peretola Airport and the other one of Galileo Galilei International Airport, located in Pisa. Both of them are always overwhelmed by departures and arrivals of flights from all over the world, with all major airlines of the European countries and others from around the world operating from the two airports.
Firenze Santa Maria Novella railway station is the most important railway station of the city, which is used for natural as well as international travel, and there are a number of bus services that connect Florence with other cities of the Italy and other countries of Europe.
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