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“Don't miss the chance to tour the David and Uffizi with Paul”

Tuscan Tour Guide - Tours
Ranked #18 of 349 Tours in Florence
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Over 10 years ago owner Paul Costa of Tuscan Tour Guide began his small private tour guide company. Since then he has led tours for Gordon Getty, Radio KISS 108 & NECN TV host Billy Costa and thousands of travelers of Royal Caribbean, Disney, Oceania, Seven Seas, Carnival, Seabourn & Norwegian Cruise Lines. Designing every tour to suit the expectations of each couple, family or group has made lifetime memories for thousands of tourists.
Reviewed August 30, 2012

Based on the recommendation of friends who raved about their experience with Paul, we booked with him to see the David and to tour the Uffizi. Paul is an extraordinary guide. I've done tours with people who seem exhausted and bored by their work and who simply recite facts I could read in a guide book. Paul couldn't be more different. He is energized by teaching. Although he has obviously toured thousands of people around Florence, you would never know based on his enthusiasm. He brings art alive and takes you back in time to understand the significance of the artist's choices. He has a gift for eliciting information from his clients, adding historical facts, and completing a story about each piece that you will never forget. After the tour, we all agreed it was the best tour we'd ever had and that we'd never look at art the same way again. But it isn't just about the art. By placing it in historical context, I learned more about Italy's history, and Florence in particular, than in all the reading I did before the trip. Tip: He's a busy guy. Book in advance. You won't be sorry.

Thank Hopewk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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306 - 310 of 370 reviews

Reviewed August 27, 2012

Our family took a walking tour of Florence with Paul, who led us through the city. We had 2 teenagers and my mom, who has seen all parts of the world and is very knowledgeable. Paul has a way of capturing everyone's attention. The girls ran after him, waiting on his every word. He brings the history of the city to life as you stand in the middle of it. My mother adored him. His enthusiasm and interactive manner was memorable. We are home and still talking about him.

Thank IBMS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 20, 2012

What a great day! My father and I planned a quick trip through Italy, and I found Paul through Trip Advisor. We both quickly became art students, as Paul gave us a full explanation of the David statue, but more importantly he led us down the path of discovery. While most guides would just explain away, Paul pointed out the details, allowing you to make the connections.

We continued through the many squares, and Paul detailed all the highlights with stories and history. We really had an incredible time, and we left looking at Florence in a completely different light.

Paul knows every detail of the city, and tells the stories with enthusiasm, if you are going to Florence, give him a call!!

1  Thank dgerson76
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 19, 2012

We experienced a thoroughly enjoyable and enlightening tour of Florence with Paul. The guy is an excellent story teller and we were enthralled by his knowledge and delivery of both history and art and his enthusiasm to share. This isn't a one way street and Paul engaged us with questions from the first minute and this was a great way to interact and not simply listen. It worked as we all contributed and made a 3 hour tour fly but we were fully absorbed. We are no culture vultures but can say hand on heart that we discussed Florence, it's history and the artwork whilst dining for the next few nights as our minds were bulging with facts and detail. Fall of the Roman Empire / the Middle Ages / the Renaissance / Medici / Michaelangelo - go on, test me !!! Cheers Paul - worth every cent.

Thank Coombsy1999
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 11, 2012

My family (wife and two children ages 11 and 13) did a walking tour of Florence with Paul in July 2012. We had provided Paul with a list of interests based on some guide books we had read. Paul put together an itinerary of Florence to show us the highlights.

I will start by saying that my wife and I were a bit reluctant to spend too much time looking at art with our kids. This is particularly true of my 11 year old son who frowned at the idea of looking at statues and painting. Well, I am here to tell you that Paul is a miracle worker. If you asked my son today what were his favorite things we did on our two week tour of Paris and Italy, he will tell you many of the things we saw with Paul. His favorite? The statue of David! I am telling you it was incredible to see how Paul engaged my son and daughter immediately when we arrived at the David. He very enthusiastically asked my son to tell him what he saw. Paul said "tell me what you see, don't try to overthink it but tell me your first impression". My son was honest and said "a big naked guy". Paul emphatically said "Yes! He is a big naked guy. Now what else do you notice about him?". It went on from there where Paul engaged the kids in decoding the statue, why he is called David, how do we know it is David, what makes this statue the most famous in all the world, etc. I am here to say that we spent a good 30-45 minutes talking about this amazing piece of art that my wife and I had seen before but knew nothing about (on our first trip we literally walked in the room, started at the statue, looked at each other and shrugged and said, "ok, we saw David now lets move on"). How stupid were we? I am telling you that this incredible piece of marble came to life through Paul and the incredible story of David (I won't spoil it if you don't know, hire Paul and you will see what I am talking about!) came to life.

After the David, we walked through Florence to the Duomo. Paul explained the history, talked about the famous bronze doors (incredible detail, they took over 20 years to complete the first set), what each frame in the door depicts, etc. We walked to the Ponte Vecchio bridge and learned about its history and how it was used as a secret walkway for the Medici family to safely move about Florence, how it evolved into a bridge that was dedicated to commerce and selling jewelery, about why it was spared from bombing in WWII and why Hitler saved this bridge while destroying most others along the Arno River. After Ponte Vecchio, we ended our tour with an extensive tour of Ufizzi.

At Ufizzi, we experienced the same approach take to the David. Paul did an incredible job of getting the kids engaged and bringing the various paintings to life. He walked us through history from the Roman era, to the dark ages to the Renaissance. We saw how the painting techniques evolved through time, the types of stories told by the painting and their artists and why the color blue was so rare and coveted (ask Paul!).

Overall, Paul was our favorite guide of our trip. We used a number of guides along our journey and he was the best. You will not be disappointed and I promise you will learn things you never knew and have so much fun doing it. Truly a memorable day and experience. Thank you so much for the lasting memories Paul!

2  Thank Illiniman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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