Florence Travel Guide

Florence Travel Guide

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There’s one overwhelming reason travelers flock to this tiny Italian city (pop. 365,000) amid Tuscany’s rolling green hills: Florence has more than o... Read More

There’s one overwhelming reason travelers flock to this tiny Italian city (pop. 365,000) amid Tuscany’s rolling green hills: Florence has more than one million works of Renaissance art—among them Michelangelo’s David and Botticelli’s Birth of Venus. It’s also the birthplace of global fashion brands like Gucci, Pucci, and Roberto Cavalli, and the city’s most influential fashion clan—the Ferragamos—have turned their renowned sense of style to four hip hotels across town, breathing new life into the previously staid lodging scene. Add to that succulent Florentine steaks, some of the world’s greatest wines, the traditional artisan workshops of the Oltrarno, and Brunelleschi’s famous masterpiece dome, and it’s not so hard to see how Firenze remains as popular as top European cities five times its size. Florence, the center of the Italian Renaissance, is a city filled with towering cathedrals and exquisite art (think Botticelli, Michelangelo, da Vinci, and more). From here, you have access to the Tuscan countryside, where you can pair delicious seasonal fare with standout Chianti wines. Partake in the Duomo-capped city's many restaurants, shops, bars, and things to do using our Florence travel guide.

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Visit Florence

Best Time To Go

July and August can be unbearably hot and humid in Florence so are best avoided. In August, when sensible Florentines flee the city, many restaurants and bars and some shops close for a period. In spring and fall (April/June and September/October), the weather is usually pleasantly warm, but the city is heaving with tourists. If you want to avoid the crowds, pack warm clothes, an umbrella, and a pair of sunglasses and visit between late November and late February.

Transportation

The centro storico (historic center) of Florence is small and very walkable, especially since large areas have been pedestrianized. The efficient bus network, run by ATAF, includes a fleet of Lilliputian electric buses (routes A, B, C, and D) designed to navigate the narrow streets of the city center. Single tickets for all routes cost €1.20 and are valid for 90 minutes; a 24-hour pass costs €5. Taxis can’t be hailed on the street but are available at designated stands or by phone (39-055-4242 or 39-055-4798).

Weather

Florentine summers tend to be hot and humid and winters are often cool and damp. January is the coolest month, with average temperatures of 43.7°F (6.5°C). July is the hottest month, with averages of 76.3°F (24.6°C).

Know Before You Go

Book tickets in advance for the Uffizi and the Accademia unless you are prepared to wait for hours in line. If you are planning to visit multiple museums, consider purchasing the Firenze Card, which will not only save you money but also allow you to skip lines. At restaurants, tips are not usually expected, although it is nice to round up your bill with a few coins.

Language

Italian

Electric

Type L (three-prong plug) and Type F (two-prong plug)

Currency

Euro (€)