Birthplace of the Renaissance

Florence Travel Blog

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Some spot in Florence

Our next stop in Italy was that famous Renaissance capital of culture, Florence. Like Venice, this place was chock full of tourists wandering about the historic downtown. Because of the crowds, there were also an unbelieveable number of illegal merchants hawking their wares. Every free space on the street was taken up by chumps selling knockoff handbags, prints of famous paintings, and other tourist bait. The best part about it all was how quickly these vendors packed up and ran away if they saw the police coming. Blink your eyes and they're gone!

Our first night in the city we hiked up to the Piazzale Michaelangelo to get a wonderful view of the sunset over the yellow and red city.

View from the Duomo
Unfortunately, the Contiki tour buses beat us up there and we had to fight through the crowds of twenty-something tourists to get a spot. That evening we were very brave and visited an authentic Italian restaurant, ordering random things off the menu. Fortunately, it was a delicious meal and the atmosphere of the place was great.

The next day we visited the Duomo, Santa Maria del Fiore, and climbed up its narrow tunnels to check out the fantastic views of the city from the roof (yes, we like panoramic views a lot!). We snuck in our lunch and had a nice meal overlooking the sunny buildings and the hills of Tuscany beyond. That afternoon we visited the Accademia art gallery to get a glimpse of one of the world's most famous sculptures, Michaelangelo's David. The dominating statue was amazing and it is definitely a masterpiece of art.

The famous Ponte Vecchio, where the shops are held up by stilts
The detailing is so fine, you can even see the veins in his hands! Unlike everyone else there, we respected the "No Photos" signs posted everywhere, so we don't have any pictures to share of it. We finished the night off with some of Italy's famous gelato, going for a nice stroll along the beautiful river.

Before catching our train this afternoon to our next destination, we paid a visit to another famous art gallery, the Uffizi. We reserved our tickets two days before, and there was still a long line-up to get in this busy place! The gallery featured a huge collection of paintings and sculpture from antiquity and from the Renaissance. We wandered through pretty much every corridor, checking out all the pieces along the way, until we came to the end. We then realized we hadn't seen the famous Birth of Venus, so I rushed back to find out where it was. Unfortunately, it was on the other side of the museum and we had to catch our train, so we didn't get to see it in the end. Oh well. We really enjoyed our time in Florence, but after all these galleries and cultural venues, we're looking forward to our next stop: a beach holiday!

 

Oldman says:
Thanks for the birthday greeting post card. I hope you are keeping well. Miss you, Love Dad
Posted on: Jul 19, 2006
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Some spot in Florence
Some spot in Florence
View from the Duomo
View from the Duomo
The famous Ponte Vecchio, where th…
The famous Ponte Vecchio, where t…
Florence
photo by: monky