FlorenceOne of Europe’s great cities for the Renaissance. Florence is known for its art, artists and architecture; from the imposing Cathedral Dome, "El Duomo" by Brunelleschi to Michelangelo’s David. Florence is great in late spring and early autumn, when its not too hot or cold, but these are also the most popular periods, when hotel rates are at their highest and the queues for the Uffizi Gallery are at their longest.
Florence’s airport is about three miles north-west of the centre. A taxi into the centre should cost around €25.
The “Vola in Bus” line runs every 30mins between 5:30am to 11pm to the coach station located next to Santa Maria Novella train station and takes about 30 mins hour.Tickets caost €4.50.
Low cost airlines generally fly into Pisa's Galileo Galilei which is located 62 miles west of Florence. Terravision bus service (http://www.terravision.eu) provides service 13 times per day. The journey takes just over an hour and costs about €10 single, €16 return. There is also a train service to Florence which runs throughout the day. The costs about €6 depending on type of train, journey time around 60 minutes. The trains departing from Pisa's airport may have a limited schedule, approximately 6 per day, the choice is significantly more if you depart from the Pisa Centrale station, which is a quick bus or taxi hop from the airport.
Florence’s main train station is called Firenze Santa Maria Novella and is is very conveniently located to everything in Florence. It is within easy walking distance from hotels as well as to El Duomo, the imposing Cathedral Dome in central Florence. More information can be found at the http://www.trenitalia.com website... click the English link at the top for a translated version.
View WiFi Free in Florence in a larger map
Day Trip Ideas
The proximity of Florence the Tuscany countryside, makes it a convenient location for day trips into excursions into the country side.
Siena a classic Tuscan medieval hill town and one of the most popular. The historic centre of Siena has been declared by UNESCO a World Heritage Site. It's a beautiful with a beautiful cathedral, pedestrian streets with shops, and the second highest medieval bell tower in Italy (with 505 steps to the top). Siena, 60 km south of Florence, is accessible by either train or bus but the bus stops in the center while the train station is downhill from the center (with a connecting bus).
Pisa famous for its leaning tower also has a good medieval center and a walk along the river. Pisa is easily reached by train or bus from Florence. It's about a 25 to 30 minute walk from the train station to the Piazza del Duomo ("Cathedral Square") also known Piazza dei Miracoli ("Square of Miracles"), a wide, walled area at the heart of the city of Pisa, recognized as one of the main centers for medieval art in the world.
San Gimignano a small walled hill town known as the City of Beautiful Towers for its 14 surviving medieval towers. Climbing the towers provide great views of the Tuscan countryside. There's an 11th century duomo decorated with 14th century frescoes, several museums, and a number of good restaurants serving typical Tuscan food. To get to San Gimignano from Florence,to Poggibonsi from which there frequent buses to San Gimignano, about a 20 minute ride.
Chianti Wine Region a picturesque region between Florence and Siena to the south. There are small wine towns, rolling hills covered with vineyards, and wineries that offer tasting. The area is best visited by car or on a tour, but you can get to the wine town of Greve by bus from Florence.
Florence Street Foods
Nothing captures the spirit, culture and essence of a country or city more than its street foods.
Lampredotto is the final part of the cow’s stomach, and when it is stewed for hours, seasoned with hot red chili sauce or green parsley sauce and served inside a delicious Italian sandwich dipped in the broth... the falvor of Tuscany. The best places to find lampredotto are in Via Gioberti, Piazza Tanucci, San Frediano, and in two small villages near Florence, Grassina and Antella.
Frittelle di riso (rice fritters) another typical Italian food found along the streets of Florence. It is made of rice, milk, sultanas, pine nuts, eggs, rum, lemon zest. The sweet aroma paints the colors of the streets from a distance!