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Featured Florence

Discussion in 'Florence' started by TuttoItaly, Jun 1, 2013.

  1. Florence is the beautiful capital of the region of Tuscany. Famous for its history, art and culture, it is considered that the Renaissance began here, in the 14th century.

    If you're interested in a small lesson of history, you should know that Florence was actually the capital of the Kingdom of Italy, from 1865 to 1871. It was only in 1871 when Rome became the capital of the Kingdom and later, capital of the country.

    Florence is one of the most beautiful cities in the world, being declared so by Forbes. Since the city is very important, it is of course an UNESCO World Heritage site, since 1982.

    Italian fashion, art, architecture and monuments are what attract millions of tourists here every year.

    The Pitti Palace and the Uffizi Gallery influence the world of art and politics to this day.
    The Gallery (in Italian, Galleria degli Uffizi) is one of the oldest and most important museums of art in the Occident. The Palace, situated close to the Ponte Vecchio, is a very important Renaissance palace. A beautiful and very interesting place to visit.

    Speaking of Ponte Vecchio, this is one of Florence's bridges that can be considered as a small part of history. During World War II, all bridges in Florence was destroyed, except for this one. It is said that Hitler considered it to be too beautiful to be destroyed so he ordered that the "Old Bridge" was to be left intact. Now, you can walk along the medieval bridge and look for a souvenir at the many shops built along it.

    Among the city's buildings, monuments and churches, there's one particular church that stands out. The Santa Maria del Fiore, or The Duomo as it is also called, is the largest dome in the world to be build with brick and mortar. The dome is astonishing and is definitely a place worth visiting.

    As you take a walk in Florence, the centre of the city is a must see. Here you can see the famous marble masterpiece of Bartolomeo Ammannati, The Fountain of Neptune, officially finished in 1565. There are numerous other statues here, in the Piazza della Signoria. Donatello, Cellini, Giambologna are all famous Italian sculptors whose statues are exposed to the public. Well, some of them were replaced with copies to preserve the originals as they were targeted by vandals over the years.

    If you're interested in very famous statues, you should visit the Palazzo Vecchio. It's the town hall of Florence but it also houses a museum where you can see Michelangelo's statue, David, and more one of a kind sculptures.

    Florence is one of the most important art centers in the world. Even the city's squares, parks and cafes have a piece of history attached to them. For example, the Caffè Giubbe Rosse was an important meeting place for poets like Giuseppe Prezzolini, Giovanni Papini and many others. Dante Alighieri was born here in 1265, Giovanni Boccaccio and Sandro Botticelli as well. And so many other important figures in history.

    As many other Italian cities, Florence is a great place to visit. Museums, monuments and the local cuisine, famous for its wine and cheese, are perfect to create great memories that will last for a lifetime.
  2. To me, Florence is one of the most romantic cities in Italy. It is such a pleasure to visit the street markets on a Saturday, stroll past all the famous statues, and then enjoy Spaghetti Bolognese in one of the small restaurants next to the river.
  3. I agree that Florence is a beautiful city and most certainly romantic. It has such a wealth of architecture and art and it is a bit easier to get around than Rome.

    As regards Spaghetti Bolognese, however, is this really an authentic Italian dish? I know you can get Spaghetti
    al raghù but I heard Bolognese was invented outside of Italy. I'm not sure though.
  4. There are SO many cities I would like to visit! Florence is on my list.
    I used to have this tradition with my best friend, but we stopped doing it a long time ago.
    When the work week was about to end (usually we would decide this on Friday), we would sit together and think of our next destination.
    So, on Saturday or Sunday, we would take my car and just drive!
    I saw a few towns in Northern Italy, all of them close to home.

    We saw: Genoa, Milan, Parma (the big cities), then we saw Castell'Arquato (it's beautiful!), Rivergaro and surroundings, Ponte dell'Olio, Agazzano (for the Castle) and others.

    Florence is more than 250 km away, but I'm sure it's worth the visit so maybe this year we'll restart our tradition :D I can't wait!
  5. It might be that Bolognese is not true Italian, Truscano. I will do some online research and report back. Maybe I will discover a few new facts about Italy during my search for ‘the truth' I must add, the Spaghetti Bolognese I enjoyed in Florence (and Venice) was delicious.
  6. As far as I know, the Italian name for Florence is Firenze, and it is the capital of the Tuscany region. Both the Tuscany region and Firenze are in the province of Florence (I hope my facts are correct). Is the Florence province also called Firenze, or just the city?
  7. Florence (Firenze) is indeed the Capital city of the region Tuscany. The region Tuscany is divided into 10 provinces:

    Arezzo, Florence, Grosseto, Livorno, Lucca, Massa and Carrara, Pisa, Prato, Pistoia and Siena.

    The city of Florence is in the Province of Florence.

    So think of it like this:

    Tuscany (region) > Province of Florence (province) > Florence city

    Hope this makes sense?
  8. It makes perfect sense, Chillout, thank you. Is 'Massa and Carrara' one province? Does each province also have a capital city, or just each region? How many regions does Italy have?

    Many questions, but I find the geographical layout of Italy interesting. Here in South Africa, the country is divided into 9 provinces. Each province has a capital city. No regions.
  9. Thanks for asking that question, Florentina and grazie to Chillout too for the detailed answer. I never knew the difference between a region and a province before.

    Is Lazio a region or a province then?
  10. Yes, Massa and Carrara are one province.

    The provinces are usually named after the largest cities within a region.

    For example, Province of Florence (Firenze in Italian) is named after the city of Florence. This Province basically includes the city of Florence and all the small towns nearby within it's territory.
  11. Lazio is a region that is divided into five provinces. Rome city is the capital of Lazio but it is also one of the five provinces that make up the region Lazio.
  12. Thanks for that.

    I actually lived in Rome but never knew that I was in a city which was in a province which in turn was in the region of Lazio.

    I read somewhere that Latin was initially just the dialect of Latium (Lazio) before it became the language of Rome, then Italy and then (much of) the known world.
  13. Yes, the info on the geography of Italy is quite intriguing. I did not know that a city with surrounding towns is called a province. As I mentioned in an earlier post, some of the provinces in South Africa are huge, stretching for 400 or 500 kilometers on end, perhaps even more. I would have thought that a region is inside a province, not the other way round, but that is because our provinces are so vast compared to Italy’s.
  14. I would love to go to Florence and see all the architecture and experience the history of such an amazing part of the world.
  15. I used to live in Firenze when I was at school there and it is amazing, but very busy with tourists during the weekends. There is so much to do there and as I studied Italian history it was great for me to see everything I had studied. The train station is very close to the main attraction, a 5 minutes walk and a day trip isn't long enough, but to walk across the bridges and breathe in the history is definitely a must if you are nearby.

    I was there for Easter (Pasqua) and there are no words to describe the celebrations in the street and the three hour service in the Duomo in Latin with all the Bishops from Tuscany in attendance.
  16. I have never been to Florence, but it's probably the only city in Italy I have read up on in Wiki. Listening and going through the introductory video, I can understand why it's important to do some research before the travel. It sounds like the best way to travel in Florence for the first time is to go in a group and with a guide.
  17. I have never been to Florence before. Having watched the clip I can understand why it's a good idea to do some research before traveling there. It's probably better to travel in a group and with a guide if going to Florence for the first time. I don't think just 2 to 3 days is enough to get to know a foreign place, though. Maybe two weeks to three weeks is the right amount of time to spend at a new place to really get to know the city, the art, the history, the attractions, the food, and the the people.
  18. Many people on guided tours can see a few things as the guides can get tickets in advance (but can be expensive). If you go, avoid Mondays as most things are closed. Everything is in walking distance though, but the museums can have queues to see things. You can easily spend a whole day in the Uffizi or the Boboli Gardens.

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