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Florence

Stunning architecture, timeless art and incredible history are around every corner in beautiful Florence.

For nearly three hundred years, Florence, the birthplace of the Renaissance, was the economic, political and cultural nerve centre of Europe as it emerged from the Middle Ages. Its days as the world’s most important city may have passed but the incredible beauty and abundant artistic heritage of this vibrant Tuscan capital ensure an enlightening experience for each of its many yearly visitors.

Michelangelo, Leonardo, Donatello, Giotto, the Lippis, Masaccio, Botticelli, Pontormo: the list of world-renowned artists who have lived and worked in Florence goes on and on. Their amazing legacy echoes to this day, proudly displayed in the city’s many wonderful cathedrals, galleries and piazzas. A good place to start any Florentine adventure is the impressive central square, Piazza del Duomo, dominated by the towering marble façade of the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore. The incredible, self-supporting dome was the first of its kind, and was designed by Brunelleschi. A trip up the 463 steps to the top of the cathedral is rewarded with an intimate look at Vasari’s mesmeric fresco, which adorns the ceiling of the dome, as well as one of the most stunning panoramic views anywhere in the city.

Just a short stroll south of the piazza is the Uffizi Gallery, which houses a formidable collection of Renaissance masterpieces. Book your tickets in advance to beat the queues for this world-famous gallery and spend a day immersed in the genius of da Vinci, Botticelli and other artistic giants. The powerful Medici family once resided at the Pitti Palace (Palazzo Pitti) and their incredible wealth and patronage of the arts can still be seen in the palace’s series of galleries, home to works by Caravaggio and Raphael. Not all of Florence’s artistic delights are indoors however; the ornate pedestrian bridge, the Ponte Vecchio, is one of the city’s most-visited attractions, and while the beautiful statue of David outside the Palazzo Vecchio is a replica, it matches the original in both its dimensions and its popularity.

It may be the art and architecture that get the most attention from tourists, but Florence’s reputation as a European style capital also draws plenty of visitors who come to browse the designer boutiques in Gucci’s home town. Foodies will be satisfied too as the innumerable cafés which dot the city’s streets serve up a number of Tuscan culinary delights, from prosciutto ham to traditional tomato soup. The compact, cobble-stoned centre, reliable electric buses and pleasant Mediterranean climate will all combine to make your stay in Florence as comfortable as it is memorable.


Guide to Exploring Florence


Top Florence Hotel & Accommodation Deals

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Maxim Axial NZ$95
Reviewed on 15 Oct. 2019
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Maxim Axial

Maxim Axial

Via Dei Calzaiuoli 11, Florence, FI
     
    4.2 of 5
    3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Proximity to all Florence attractions and friendly staff

    TSH Florence Lavagnini NZ$144
    Reviewed on 13 Oct. 2019
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    TSH Florence Lavagnini

    TSH Florence Lavagnini

    Viale Spartaco Lavagnini 70 72, Florence
       
      4.5 of 5
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Good location, excellent amenities. Rooms were a bit dark & hot.

      Hotel Pitti Palace al Ponte Vecchio NZ$223
      Reviewed on 15 Oct. 2019
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      Hotel Pitti Palace al Ponte Vecchio

      Hotel Pitti Palace al Ponte Vecchio

      Borgo S.Jacopo, 3/r, Florence, FI
         
        4.4 of 5
        4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Good location walking distance to ever thing clean hotel no need for a car lots if shoping and restaurants

        Grand Hotel Cavour NZ$172
        Reviewed on 17 Oct. 2019
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        Grand Hotel Cavour

        Grand Hotel Cavour

        Via Del Proconsolo 3, Florence, FI
           
          4.3 of 5
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Close proximity to all attractions. Very clean. We would definitely stay here again

          Orto De Medici Hotel NZ$203
          Reviewed on 5 Oct. 2019
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          Orto De Medici Hotel

          Orto De Medici Hotel

          Via San Gallo 30, Florence, FI
             
            4.7 of 5
            4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Great location with very friendly staff. A couple side streets away from the hectic downtown core with lots of great restaurants nearby. Helped to have quieter nights to sleep. Breakfast was great and included alcohol if desired. Had a nice second floor inside and outside bar with drinks available ...

            c-hotels Ambasciatori NZ$127
            Reviewed on 18 Oct. 2019
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            c-hotels Ambasciatori

            c-hotels Ambasciatori

            Via Luigi Alamanni 3, Florence, FI
               
              4.1 of 5
              4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Good location, just next to train station and walking distant to major attractions. Staff are friendly.

              Grand Hotel Minerva NZ$321
              Reviewed on 14 Oct. 2019
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              Grand Hotel Minerva

              Grand Hotel Minerva

              Piazza Santa Maria Novella 16, Florence, FI
                 
                4.7 of 5
                4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                The hotels location was very central to everything and just a few minutes walk away from the train station

                Grand Hotel Baglioni NZ$211
                Reviewed on 11 Oct. 2019
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                Grand Hotel Baglioni

                Grand Hotel Baglioni

                Piazza Unita Italiana 6, Florence, FI
                   
                  4.3 of 5
                  4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  the free breakfast was delicious. Enjoyed free mini bar in room. The location was excellent. Nice large rooms. Great vacation. We liked the tram from airport to hotel. It is just across the street from hotel and cost ony 1.50 euro per person per trip. It only takes around 20 minutes or so to Hotel ...

                  Florence Flight Deals

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                  Top 10 Things To Do In Florence

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