We woke up incredibly early – as we knew Florence would be full to the brim of little gems for us to go and see, and with a whole day scheduled, we didn’t want to waste any time. After a fresh breakfast, we hurried up a couple hundred meters up the road to our favourite new view point; Piazzale Michelangelo – but now as the sun was just rising, it would paint Florence even prettier than it was last night.
After taking in the beauty from the Piazza, we made our way down towards the River Arno, and walked up towards Ponte Vecchio, “a Medieval stone closed-spandrel segmental arch bridge over the Arno River, noted for still having shops built along it, as was once common” – but as we were crossing over it so early, shop was closed. Our first port of call was the World famous Uffizi Gallery, an art gallery that’s among the oldest and most famous art museums of Europe (!!). We were terribly excited.
The museum itself was pretty fantastic, unfortunately – as with much museums, taking photos was strictly forbidden, so we didn’t manage to take any of the beautiful rooms, but we were awe struck by some of the works on displays, the building itself was also amazing, with some really amazing corridors and views over the River Arno – and looking back towards Ponte Vecchio.
From here, we headed back outside to take in Florence’s architecture – as pretty much every single building we saw was incredible. We saw various statues from masters such as Leonardo da Vinci casually out in the street on an old chapel called Orsanmichele, to very interesting ‘gargoyle’ type decorations in the streets.
We continued to walk around the streets, and came across a replica of Michelangelo’s ‘David’, which was located in the sculpture’s original position, in front of the Palazzo della Signoria – which blew my mind. Also, where ever you looked on this Plazzo, every single sculpture was amazing – I’ve never seen anywhere like it, and I’m extremely happy to have been there.
Everywhere you look, the one dominant feature on the Florence skyline is the Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore (Florence Cathedral) – so a swift walk to Piazza del Duomo was in order – this is the main square which sits around the Cathedral, and the Baptistery.
Once the crowds calmed down, we did manage to get into the fantastic Cathedral, but unfortunately, I didn’t manage to get any photos from inside.
By now, we were getting pretty tired – as we’d done a LOT of sight seeing. I had a great idea, of heading back to the tent for a couple of hours, just to chill, and get something from the campsite bar and wait for it to get dark – as I thought to myself (and then later told Gina), that with all these amazing sculptures and buildings dotted around, the good people of Florence surely has the correct idea to light up these amazing works in the night with pretty lights, so it would be worth our while to come back later on in the evening to get some night photography shots in. After getting a well deserved Italian ice cream, we headed back up to the campsite.
So, after a quick break – we headed back to the best places we’d seen during the day, and took some night time shots! And, as I had predicted – everything was indeed spectacular.
Tags: Baptistery, Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore, Cathedral's Façade, David, Florence, Florence Cathedral, Leonardo da Vinci, Menelaus supporting the body of Patroclus, Michelangelo's 'David', Orsanmichele, Palazzo della Signoria, Piazza del Duomo, Piazzale Michelangelo, Ponte Vecchio, River Arno, St. John the Evangelist at Orsanmichele, Uffizi Gallery