Visitors enjoying their first trip to Florence will quickly find why the beautiful city is regarded as the art capital of Italy. When arriving in the city centre, travellers to Florence will be greeted by the Santa Maria Novella Basilica, a striking piece of medieval architecture and an indicator of the city's rich history. Whilst exploring Florence, holidaymakers will discover some of the finest Italian structures and art, and be presented with the opportunity to learn more about its most famous inhabitants as well as indulging in fabulous
shopping trips, dining and entertainment experiences.
Roman emperor Julius Caesar founded Florence in 59BC and established Piazza della Repubblica, a central city square now home to many bustling cafés and street performers. In later times, Florence fostered the arts and became known as the 'cradle of the renaissance,' ensuring holidays in Florence boast impeccable artistic credentials. Visitors to Florence can find the Medici Chapel - resting place of the city's most powerful and famous dynasty - at San Lorenzo church.
In Florence, you will find a true art-lover's paradise. Walk through the sculpture-lined Piazza della Signoria to encounter Palazzo Vecchio, Florence's town hall and original home of Michelangelo's David. Before visiting the genuine article at Galleria dell'Accademia, with its definitive Michelangelo collection, first visit the Uffizi for classics such as Botticelli's Birth of Venus and Rembrandt's self-portraits. By way of the Vasari Corridor, you can visit Palazzo Pitti, home to five of Florence's galleries, housing everything from Raphael and Titian to modern art, porcelain and carriages.
When viewing such inspiring pieces of art from throughout the ages, anyone enjoying a
city break in Florence should not forget to take in its lush open spaces and the stunning architecture along the way. Directly in front of Florence's Palazzo Pitti, travellers will find Boboli Gardens, one of the largest and most elegant gardens in Italy, featuring a classical amphitheatre and many renaissance fountains. Head back into the Florence's centre to view the Gothic architecture of Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore and Giotto's Campanile at Piazza del Duomo and you'll know your flight to Florence has rewarded you with a wealth of awe-inspiring architecture. For those seeking further-flung adventures in Florence, a series of villas built by the Medici can be found in Florence and the surrounding Tuscany area, and make for a perfect day trip by car.