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  • Writer's pictureLauren

Quick Guide to Florence Italy

Florence, Italy

As many of you know, I studied in Florence, Italy my senior year of college. I was traveling with a friend from college and we had to find our way around the city of Florence and the country. Florence has so much to offer from history, food, and culture. Here are all the tips, tricks, food recommendations, and favorite spots in the city that will always have my heart.


Let’s start with the airport. ✈️

The Florence airport is smaller than most in Italy. The flights may be more expensive to fly direct into Florence. If you’re willing to take a plane then train you could fly into Rome, or Milan. The train station in Florence City Center is the Santa Maria Novella.

The Florence Airport to the city center is about a 20 minute car ride. There are a couple options for traveling to the city center.

  1. Airport Bus Shuttle (VoilanBus). This is located at the airport and leaves every 30 minutes. This is about a 20 minute ride to the city center. The tickets cost 1.50 euro and can be purchased at the tram station. Definitely the most cost effective.

  2.  A taxi is another option if you aren’t looking to take the tram. This is about a 30 minute travel time. The pros of this would be that they take you right to where you are staying.

Food 🍝

If you’re traveling to Italy you’re definitely looking to eat the most authentic food you can. After living in the city for 3 months I would like to think I found some good spots. My tip for you is that if you are near a big attraction walk 5-10 minutes away and then find a spot to eat, here you will find a more authentic meal.


Breakfast

My favorite meal of the day. My go to was always a cappuccino and a croissant.

  1. Caffè Le Torri

  2. Gusta Bar

  3. Ditta Artigianale

Apertivo (Before dinner a time for aperol sprits and a light snack)

  1. Anywhere in Piazza Santo Spirito

  2. My favorite would be a trip to Conad (the grocery store) a bottle of wine, cheese and tomatoes. Walk to the nearest bridge and just sit :)

Dinner

  1.  Pizzeria Ristorante Tarocci      My go to spot for dinner. Hidden gem. Kind people and good prices. Easy to make a reservation online.

  2. Ristorante Mastero Cillegia.   Good pizza and some good pasta.

  3. ZAZA     This would be considered more of a tourist restaurant. If you can get a reservation it’s worth it.

  4. LO’V Osteria Vegetariana    This is a vegetarian place and they have some good different dishes. They also have yummy organic wine! This is a very cool place, and the people are kind.

  5. Gusta Pizza      My favorite pizza place. It opens at 7 and the line starts forming at 6:15. They don’t take reservations. If you go around 8 you will have a short wait.

  6. Pino’s Sandwiches       A good price and yummy panino.

Gelato

My biggest piece of advice for gelato is that a cup should not be more than 4 euro.

  1. Gelateria Della Passera

  2. Gelateria Artigianale La Sorbettiera Santo Spirito

  3. La Strega Nocciola Gelateria Artigianale

Museums

All the Musesms are worth it! Depending on the season you go, they may be crowded. If you buy tickets online you will not have to wait in line. My favorites…

  1. Uffizi

  2. Bargello

  3. Pitti palace

  4. Academia museum- The one with David statue.

  5. Boboli gardens- Absolutely beautiful. I could walk around for hours.

Some of my favorite things to do!

  1. My number one favorite is having a picnic at the Boboli Gardens. You are able to sit on the grass at some parts of the garden. Once in the garden walk up the first big hill and find a spot to sit or walk deeper into the garden to find another. Go to Conad the grocery store and grab some snacks, the perfect way to just relax but also see Florence. DON’T BRING GLASS! Remember to pick up your trash before leaving :)

  2. Markets in San Spirito. San Spirito square usually has markets or sellers everyday. This is a nice place to walk around and explore.

  3. Walk to the duomo at night! The first time I saw the duomo at night I could have cried, it didn’t seem real. Going at night you will not be surrounded by the crowds.

Shopping

I shopped more than I should have during my time in Florence. My favorite stores were;

  1. School of Leather for authentic leather, and

  2. Riccardo Luci Marbled Paperone. This store has very cool marble paper and leather pieces.

Night Life

Florence definitely has some really fun night life. Some of those places would be;

  1. The Lions Fountain,

  2. Friends Pub,

  3. The Hidden Pub, and

  4. Space Club.

Lastly, what I noticed while in Florence is that the Italian people appreciate if you try to speak their language. Say ciao when greeting people and any other words you know. I definitely was not the best with Italian, but I tried!

I hope this helps. Enjoy Florence!

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