On my Easter vacation I visited Florence. As I only had a weekend, I was wondering: How to spend the perfect weekend in Florence? If you only have a weekend in Florence, here's what I recommend to see, as I did during my 48 hour break in this beautiful Italian city.
My vacation started with a lovely coffee and a croissant at a bar. Note: Italians don't really eat breakfast, they more or less drink a coffee standing in a café, sometimes accompanied with a croissant.
A walk in Florence
After my Italian breakfast (a capucchino) I went to the Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale di Florence, Piazza dei Cavalleggeri, 1, 50122 Florence. Every Saturday at 11:30 they offer a free guided tour through this beautiful library.
After the tour you can relax at café Rivoire, Piazza della Signoria, 50122 Florence. The delicious Cioccolata calda is a must. It unfortunately expensive, but you can sit at the Piazza della Signoria and can see people go by. Afterwards you can walk to Palazzo Davanzati, Via Porta Rossa, 13, 50123 Florence. If you are lucky you can visit all three floors (sometimes you have to book a tour). The Palace, built by the Davizzi family around mid-14th century, was purchased in 1578 by the Davanzati family and remained in their possession until 1838. In 1951 the palace was purchased by the State and is open to the public today. The museum today displays a fine collection of interior and lacework ranging from the 16th to the 20th centuries.
After your visit of the palace you can walk to the Palazzo Pitti. The best way to walk there is through the Ponte Vecchio, because no visit to Florence is complete without spending some time on the Ponte Vecchio, looking at the glittering jeweler's shops along the bridge or admiring the view. At Palazzo Pitti, Piazza de' Pitti, 1, 50125 Florence, I bought a combination ticket for the museum and the Boboli garden. The palace, which houses several important museums, was built in the second half of the 15th century probably as a project of Filippo Brunelleschi for Luca Pitti. Today, the palace and the Boboli gardens house the Palatine Gallery, the Museum of Modern Art and the exciting Costume Gallery. After the museum you can have a picnic at the Boboli Garden, which also offers an amazing view over Florence. Tip: IF you have time but some cheese, bread and olives at the San Lorenzo Market, Piazza del Mercato Centrale, 6, 50123 Florence.
After the visit of the palazzo you can sit down on the hill in front of it and relax or walk to Borgo la Croce and Via Vincenzo Gioberti, where you can find little shops in a less crowded area. You can dine at Caffè Cibreo at Via Andrea del Verrocchio, 5R, 50122 Florence and enjoy a fine wine at the bar opposite from the restaurant: Caffè Sant'Ambrogio, Piazza Sant'Ambrogio, 7r, 50121 Florence. Or you can do it the Italian way; buy a wine or beer and sit on the stairs of Church of Saint Ambrose. The Via Pietrapiana has in any case many bars to visit.
Walk II in Florence
At the café La Cité, Borgo S. Frediano, 20/R, 50124 Florence, you will find numerous books and a good breakfast coffee, which you can enjoy in comfortable chairs. In the evening you can also listen to live music here. After breakfast you can visit the Galleria Degli Uffizi, 50122 Florence, with a wonderful collections of paintings, sculptures and architecture. Note: On the last Sunday of the month all the public museums are free. We were there around 8:30 and had to wait for 90 minutes, which was worth it and is normal. If you come later you might have to wait for 180 minutes. You could also buy a tour for 45 Euro and don't have to wait at all, up to you.
After you could walk up to the Piazzale Michelangelo, 50125 Florence, and enjoy a beautiful view over the city. Before, you could buy some delicious snacks like sandwichs and cantuccini at iTOSCANI, Via Maggio, 1, 50125 Florence, and picnic at the Piazzale. Se Sto on Arno on the 6th floor of the Westin Excelsior Hotel, Piazza Ognissanti, 3, 50123 Florence, is perfect for a sundowner, but not cheap. Another recommendable rooftop bar opens at 18:00 and is located at the Grand Hotel Cavour Florence, Via del Proconsolo, 3, 50122 Florence. Note: Try to reserve a table, it is quite popular. As you see, we spend this day above the clouds and relaxed while sitting in the sun looking over the former Italian capital. Another museum I really like it the Casa Martelli, Via Ferdinando Zannetti, 8, 50123 Florence, which is a historic family house going back to the days of the Medici, giving an authentic insight into a nobleman's home.
Don't forget to eat as much ice cream and drink as many Italian espressi as you can. I hope you have a good journey and fall in love with Florence just as I did.
How to spend the perfect weekend in Florence? Here are some more tips:
- best Focaccias - I Fratellini, Via dei Cimatori, 38/red, 50122 Florence
- best ice cream - Venchi Cioccolato - Gelato, Via Calimaruzza, 18/Piazza del Mercato Nuovo 6/7, 50123 Florence
- best pasteries like Tuscan speciality Ricciazelli alla mandozla (also good for gifts) – Migone Confetti, Via dei Calzaiuoli, 87R, 50123 Florence
- best perfume, I love Tuscan spring – Erbario Toscano, Via del Corso, 38, 50122 Florence
If you want to find more hidden gems, but in Berlin, check out my folding maps BertaBerlin. They are available in well-chosen locations all over Kreuzberg, Mitte, Neukölln, Schöneberg and online. But for those of you, who want to stay up to date, feel free to follow me on Instagram, Facebook or register for my newsletter.