Aren’t the words “Italy is open again” some of the most beautiful words an avid traveler can hear? Finally, your wish to visit Florence can come true.
There’s a lot of prep before the trip, so let’s make this part of your travel plans as painless as possible. These 5 evergreen spots are perfect for both first-time and return visitors. Let’s check out what to see and, of course, what to eat first.
Have a Fat Panini at Antico Vinaio.
Where: Via dei Neri 65, 74, 76, and 78, close to Piazza San Remigio and Piazza della Signoria
When: Every day from 10 AM to 10:30 PM
Budget: The most expensive item is 13 Euros, but you can still enjoy a great sandwich at half that price.
If you were lucky enough to check them out in LA, just imagine what’s waiting for you in Florence. We are talking amazing Hulk-sized sandwiches loaded with local salami, prosciutto, cheeses, and other goodies on fresh artisanal bread. Plus, you can follow them up with a glass or two of good Tuscan wine.
Make sure you’re wearing comfy shoes. Even without restrictions, the place is known for its long waiting lines. Or give them a ring at +39 055 23 82 723 for a reservation.
Get into Science at the Galileo Museum.
Where: Piazza dei Guidici, near Pallazo Vecchio
When: 9:30 AM to 6 PM all days but Tuesday. On Tuesdays, the museum closes at 1 PM
Budget: Tickets for adults are 10 Euros, for minors 6 Euros. Or you can get a 13 Euro ticket that allows you to skip the lines.
Formerly known as Museo di Storia della Scienza, it’s housed in an 11th-century building. It’s home to artifacts from the Medici collections, Galileo’s belongings, and other numerous pieces of evidence of Tuscany and Italy’s contributions to science.
It’s not all about old objects, but old books as well! A lot of historical scientific papers are housed in the museum’s library, right next to one of the most extensive collections of contemporary materials.
The museum also puts on temporary exhibitions. Numerous events are on schedule often, including anything between debates and lectures, to fun historical reenactments. Check out their website to see what will be available during your visit.
Have Lunch Like a Local – Trattoria Mario Florence.
Where: Via Rosina 2r, right next to Mercato Centrale.
When: Takeaway and table service from noon to 3 PM.
Budget: No item on the menu goes over 20 Euros.
Every city in Italy has numerous restaurants that are decked out in Michellin stars, but still many can’t compare to Trattoria Mario. In 1953, Rome and Amelia opened this restaurant and named it after their son. Since then, the place has been a favorite for both the locals and visitors alike.
The menu changes every day. You can either check their page to check for hints of what’s cooking. That being said, no matter the time of the year, you’ll always be able to get a Florentine-style steak, Ribolita, or their signature slow-cooked Ragu.
Keep in mind that, due to restrictions, reservations are mandatory. Feel free to reach out to the workers and the family via email and social media, or call them once you’re in Italy (the number is +39 055 218550).
When: The food court on the 1st floor is open from Monday to Sunday, 10 AM to midnight. The fresh market is open from Monday to Saturday, from 7 AM to 2 PM.
Budget: The food court can get very pricey, but the items at the fresh market are reasonably priced.
You can’t call yourself a proper foodie unless you make a stop here. The market halls are open since 1874 and have since been the best place to have a taste of Italy.
You can enjoy different produce, pasta, oils, truffles, and numerous artisanal products on the ground floor. Outside you’ll encounter numerous stalls that sell souvenirs, clothes, and other miscellaneous knick-knacks. However, be a smart shopper and watch for high prices: if they seem to be higher than what you’ve encountered at other parts of Florence, some is looking to scan some tourists.
The food court features numerous small restaurants, tasting rooms, and wine bars. Here you can enjoy both traditional Italian dishes as well as other amazing food made by master chefs. Make sure to visit the website and see if they are planning something special for the days you’ll be visiting.
Another pro tip: if you’re on a tight budget, make a trip to the second floor. You’ll still get to enjoy some amazing pizzas and snacks while causing less pain to your wallet.
Get Lost in Giardino Boboli.
Where: Piazza de Pitti
When: From Monday to Sunday, from 8:15 AM to sunset (closing times change by season, so check the website for the exact time)
Budget: Single ticket is 10 Euros, but you may qualify for a free or a reduced price ticket as well.
Designed for the Medicis and inspired numerous court gardens all across Europe, these beautiful gardens are open to the public since 1766. A perfect place to get lost, wander, and feel like you’ve traveled through time. Enjoy a stroll through Cerchiate Piccole or take a peek at the statues of mythical creatures near the Fountain of Neptune.
Plant lovers must also stop by the Botanica Superiore, aka the Pineapple garden, and enjoy its hundreds of species of tropical, subtropical, and aquatic plants. And if that was not enough for you, Museo della Moda e del Costume and Museo delle porcellane are right next door. The same goes for the Forte di Belvedere and Porta Romana (the city gate from the 13th century).
No worries if you choose to visit in the spur of the moment. The entire complex is accessible to people with disabilities and family-friendly for a hassle-free experience