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Florence Cathedral
Photo ©Rob Zand

Discovering Florence’s historical center

Must-see gems in one of the world’s most well-loved cities

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In the historical center of Florence, you can view outstanding historical treasures; for this reason, in 1982, UNESCO declared the city’s downtown area a Heritage for Humanity Cultural Site. In Piazza del Duomo, you’ll find stunning symbols of the Renaissance such as the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, with its typically Italian Gothic architecture and Giotto’s famed bell tower.

The Duomo’s imposing cupola, created by Brunelleschi, remains an incredible example of ingeniousness.  Next, take a trip to Palazzo Medici Riccardi; the first Renaissance building in Florence, it was designed by Michelozzo. Nearby, you’ll see the Basilica of San Lorenzo, which the Medici commissioned to Brunelleschi. Inside you’ll find its noteworthy sacristies by Donatello and Michelangelo. To view the greatest works of Buonarroti, make sure to visit the Accademia Gallery where you can witness Michelangelo’s ‘David’ in all of its magnificence. Just steps away, you’ll find Piazza Santissima Annunziata with its Loggia of the Innocents. 

Walking along Via dei Calzaiuoli, you’ll reach Piazza della Signoria, the city’s historical-political center where you can visit Palazzo Vecchio and the Uffizi Gallery which hosts the masterpieces of Renaissance painting. The Basilica of Santa Croce is not far away. Once you’ve crossed the Ponte Vecchio, you’ll reach the Oltrarno quarter where you can still find historical artisan shops where craftsmen employ traditional techniques to produce their high quality wares. While in Florence, don’t forget to visit Palazzo Strozzi and the Church of Santa Maria Novella. An international Mecca for culture, the city is truly one of a kind!
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The territory of the Valdarno is singular and picturesque and begins from the point at which, near Arezzo, the river changes direction and heads north. ...
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