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Florence Tourism: Best of Florence

About Florence
There’s no better place for Renaissance art and architecture than Florence—from the Galleria dell’Accademia (home to Michelangelo’s David) to the cathedrals and arches that make up the Piazzale Michelangelo. But just beyond the main sights, you’ll find some of the city’s off-the-beaten-path gems, with (bonus) way less crowds. San Miniato al Monte is worth the climb for the frescoes and unbeatable views. Oltrarno, just across the river, offers plenty of vintage shops, boutiques, and cool cafes. When in doubt, do as the locals do: Post up in a piazza with a plate of fresh tagliatelle and a glass of Chianti and watch the city go by.

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Essential Florence

3 great walks in Florence

An insider shares her secret spots in the Tuscan capital
Read on

A wine lover’s guide to Florence

Most people visit Florence to see the Renaissance art, but my main priority was the wine. I wanted to drink it, of course, and also learn about Florence’s long history with wine. The city is an ideal jumping-off point for day trips to countryside vineyards, but I discovered that there are enough great spots in the city itself to keep wine lovers busy for days.
emilypricetravels, Durham, NC
  • Fiaschetteria Fantappie
    We stumbled into Fiaschetteria Fantappie on a food tour and it quickly became our happy hour spot. The bar has affordable local wines by the glass as well as light snacks. My move was pairing a glass of Chianti with the crostone with olive oil, truffle salt, and pecorino. If you go, be sure to also check out the Grocery Pirgher Marzio a few doors down for local meats and cheeses.
  • Le Volpi e L'Uva
    The Ponte Vecchio is a must-see in Florence, but the crowds are intense. Le Volpi e l’Uva is located just far enough away from the bridge to offer some much-needed peace—and wine, both by the glass and bottle to go. The shop buys wine directly from the makers, with a focus on native grapes and organic and biodynamic farming methods, and has an amazing selection.
  • Eataly Firenze
    I enjoyed Eataly in both New York and Chicago, but the Florence location is by far the best. It has a bookstore, multiple restaurants, cooking classes, and, of course, lots of wine. I spent the better part of an afternoon strolling the aisles, but it’s also fun to have dinner here because the wine you order is usually available for purchase.
  • Coquinarius
    If, like me, you’re hungry after seeing the Duomo, head to Coquinarius—a casual spot right behind the cathedral. It carries a more robust food menu than most wine shops (you have to try the carpaccio), plus an excellent list of wines by the glass and bottle. You can also opt for wine pairings with your meal.
  • Casa del Vino
    This is a hidden gem, emphasis on the “hidden” (it took me a while to find it, but it was so worth it). It’s tucked behind the merchant stalls in Florence’s outdoor leather market and is the perfect place for a glass of wine and panini after shopping for handbags. The shop has a beautifully curated wine list—order a glass of prosecco col condo—it’s only served at a handful of wine shops around town.
  • Enoteca Pinchiorri
    If you’re looking for an extravagant night out, Enoteca Pinchiorri is the place. The three-Michelin-starred restaurant specializes in Tuscan cuisine and has an extensive wine list with over 4,000 different labels from both France and Italy, including hard-to-find vintages.
  • Vineria Sonora
    Vineria Sonora was one of the hippest wine bars we visited on our trip. While most of the wine bars in Florence have an older vibe, Vineria Sonora felt very new and cool, with a much younger crowd. The bar has a focus on natural wines from small producers, so it’s a great spot to try some unique, affordable offerings. What we loved most: the live music.

Explore Florence by interest

Drinks with a view

The best rooftop bars to sip Aperol spritzes

Under-the-radar art

Boutique galleries and lesser-known museums

Renaissance checklist

Must-see museums, architecture, and history

Head to the market

Shop, snack, and explore in these local markets

Beyond the top hits

More history and culture just outside the city center

Best skip-the-line tours

Get right to the most popular things to do

On the Arno

Sightseeing tours and cruises on the water

Off-the-beaten-path picks

Hidden gems and spots locals love

Florence on a dime

Eats and activities that won’t break the bank

If you're feeling fancy-ish

Luxury experiences that are totally worth it
Florence Travel Guide

Travelers' pro tips for experiencing Florence

Your best bet for great food and reasonable prices are the smaller, family-run restaurants on the side streets.
If you’re going to be in Florence for at least three days, get a three-day Firenze Pass for entrance to museums. The easiest place to get one is Palazzo Vecchio.
Wear comfortable shoes and prepare to walk everywhere, but if you poop out, don't be shy about hailing a cab.

In the words of those who've been there before ...

How do you travel like a native in Florence? You don't rent a car. Instead, you walk, or ride your bike, or, if you are brave, ride your scooter, or you take mass transit. Also, you live with the seasons, you appreciate beauty and history, you eat fresh and seasonal foods, and you appreciate living – especially aperitivo! Florence is a walkable, beautiful city. Go and enjoy.
Florence isn't just for world travelers. Grab your camera and get over there! It's an art lover's paradise!
Florence the centerpiece of Tuscany. There’s so much to see. I recommend you add an extra few days and take in surrounding areas like Pisa and Chianti. My hidden gem is the Della Fortezza Fountain and park; quiet tranquil, nice fountain and near the main train station with the fort walls, but hardly any goes there.

What is the best way to get there?


Florence Airport (FLR) is served by many airline carriers and connects to other major European airports. Pisa Airport is another option and offers a shuttle to Pisa Centrale, where you can get a train to Florence. The trip is around an hour.


The city’s main train station is Firenze Santa Maria Novella (aka Firenze SMN), while the Firenze Campo di Marte station is its secondary.


Several international bus companies offer service to Florence, but Eurolines has the largest network to and from cities across Europe.

For more info on getting to Florence, visit here.

Do I need a visa?

Since Italy is one of the 26 Schengen Area countries, tourists from those countries do not need a visa for visits less than 90 days, but passports must be valid for at least six months after departure dates. The same goes for Americans.

When is the best time to visit?

Summer: The best time to visit Florence is April-June and September, which is also the busiest and most expensive time as well. The average daily temperatures then are warm, but not too hot, as they can be in July and August when average daily highs can hit 88 Fahrenheit (31 Celsius). To that end, many businesses may close in August for locals to escape the heat.


While you are able to rent cars, they are not recommended when visiting Florence due to traffic restrictions in its city center. Luckily, the city is small enough to navigate on foot. For more info, visit here.


Taxis are readily available in Florence, however, you cannot hail one from the street. You can request one by phone or at one of the several taxi stands throughout the city. For more info and a map of main taxi stations, visit