The Best Things Outside of the City Center!
Florence is one of the most historical cities in the world. The amount of history, architecture, and art in this beautiful city is astonishing. The most famous attractions in Florence include the Uffizi gallery, the Accademia Gallery of Florence where you can see Michelangelo’s David, the Gucci Gardens, the Medici Palace, and of course, the Duomo. These attractions are all located in the city center of Florence, making it the most populated area in Florence every weekend. As amazing as these masterpieces are, it is nice to get away from all the crowds after a while. There is just as much of a rich culture on the other side of the bridge that I have been lucky enough to explore. So, I am writing this blog post to tell you some of the best things to do and see in Florence outside the city center!
Here is a list of 5 of my favorite things to do, see, and eat outside the city center:
The Pitti Palace and the Boboli Gardens
The Pitti Palace was bought by one of the most powerful families in Italian history, the Medici family, in 1549, and has housed the ruling families of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany for centuries. It is known as a treasure house full of paintings, plates, jewelry and luxurious possessions. The Boboli Gardens are outside the Pitti Palace and are a great place to relax and have a picnic. You can get a year-long pass to the gardens for under 25-30€!
Easily one of my favorite things to do in all of Florence! Piazzale Michelangelo requires a little bit of a hike, but it is extremely worth it to get the best view of the city! At the top, you can check out the duomo, take pictures, or have a picnic! There are little cafes and gelato shops at the top, as well as a replica of Michaelangelo’s David.
The Ponte Vecchio is the only bridge to have survived the German attacks on Florence in the 1940s, making it one of the most well-known places in Florence. The bridge is adorned with local shops that sell decadent jewelry and lots of street stands as well with Florence merchandise. It is the prettiest to experience at night when it is all lit up and reflecting over the Arno river.
Gusta Pizza has the best pizza in Florence. Every time you walk by, you will see the line going around the block as people wait before it even opens to get a seat. They have a large variety of toppings and sauces, with one of my favorites being the pesto and burrata pizza. Definitely the place to go for pizza in Florence.
Piazza Santo Spirito
Piazza Santo Spirito is one of the hubs for the locals in Florence. It is home to some of the best restaurants, including the renowned Osteria Santo Spirito, Borgo Antico, Tamero, Volume, Loggia Roof Bar, and so many more. The Loggia Roof Bar has a spectacular Italian cheese platter accompanied by a beautiful view of the city. If you are going to eat at these places, I recommend making a reservation because they are always busy! This piazza also has markets every day, and the biggest markets on Sundays with clothes, fresh produce, jewelry, art, and more!
I hope this gives you a little insight into the area on the other side of the Arno river, and inspires you to take the journey across the Ponte Vecchio to see what else Florence has to offer!
Written by: Gina, Spring 2023 Florence Student from University of South Carolina