Top things to do in Florence

Florence, called Firenze in Italian, is the capital city of Tuscany in northern Italy. It’s a renowned centre of culture, with plenty of Renaissance art, opulent architecture, sculpture and monuments to take in. Widely regarded as one of the most beautiful cities in the world, Florence has also been declared a UNESCO World Heritage site.

If you’re thinking of going on a short getaway or are already holidaying in Italy, Florence could make for a wonderful mini-trip destination. Packed with ornate buildings, world-class artworks and cultural events, you’ll be spoiled for choice on where to go and what to see in 48 hours. To help you plan your visit take a look below at some of the best loved, must-see sights and attractions.

Uffizi Gallery

The Uffizi Gallery is one of the most famous museums in the world and is a definite must-see when visiting Florence. It houses a truly opulent collection of unique artworks and sculptures by celebrated Italian artists, including Leonardo da Vinci, Botticelli, Giotto and Raffaello.

The main part of the collection was left to Florence by the Medici family, who once ruled this spectacular city. The idea was that Florentine’s could ‘adorn the state, be of utility to the public and attract the curiosity of foreigners’ – and we’re sure you’ll agree that this gallery achieves that.

Piazzale Michaelangelo

This Florentine piazza was built in 1869 on a hill just outside the main city centre. Florence was the capital of Italy at this time and the piazza was part of a regeneration programme to honour the city.

The piazza is dedicated to the famous sculptor and artist Michelangelo, so you’ll find numerous bronze copies of his marble statues dotted around the square. It’s also the perfect place to get incredible panoramic views across the city and the Arno River.

Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore

The terracotta and cream dome of the Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore is one of the most famous images of Florence. The cathedral is the third largest church in the world, only behind St. Peter’s Cathedral in Rome and St. Paul’s Cathedral in London, so is a sight to behold.

Completed in the 15th century, it was built to commemorate the Italian saint Santa Maria del Fiore. The cathedral has a number of interesting styles due to the time between when building started on the huge structure and when it was finally completed.

Piazza del Duomo

This is the square just outside the Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore and is commonly regarded as the religious and cultural heart of the city. Almost every surface is ornately decorated, while the entire space is surrounded by spectacular buildings and architecture.

You could also choose to explore the surrounding buildings, including the Baptistery of St. John, which dates back to the 12th century. Or visit the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo to find original works by renowned artists including Michelangelo and Donatello.

Piazza della Signoria

Regarded as a powerful historical symbol of what was once the Florentine Republic, the Piazza della Signoria is worth seeing when you visit Florence. In fact, this square has acted as the unofficial centre of political life in the city since the 14th century.

There are numerous sculptures and ornate plaques commemorating historical events in Florence’s political past to be found here. And this was also once the location of Michelangelo’s original ‘David’ sculpture.

As well as the abundance of history and culture, Florence has plenty of restaurants, impressive designer shopping choices and its own opera house to enjoy. Whatever you choose to see and do, you’re sure to have an amazing experience in this beautiful Italian city.

Share this page