FLORENCE | July 2019
I recently got back from a trip to Florence with my boyfriend. It was wonderful to be back in Italy, after visiting Rome last year. I loved being able to see the history and the beauty that line the streets again! We stayed in a beautiful AirBnb on Via Ghibellina, called Loft le Murate. The location was amazing and the owner was lovely. I would 100% absolutely stay there again! We were only there for a week but we managed to see all the sights and have an incredible time.
After travelling all day, on the first night, we mainly just took in the area around us with a trip to the supermarket and some dinner. I love Carrefour, so having one nearby was fab. Obviously, we had pizza for dinner, which was the perfect start to our week in Italy. I managed to get a nasty cold on the first night but that did not stop us from having a fab holiday.
On the second day we had tickets booked for Duomo and the cathedral. We climbed every one of the 500ish stairs to get to the top. In the heat, it was an interesting (and sweaty) experience but the view was absolutely worth it. To see all the way across the city was fantastic. We then climbed all the way back down and headed to the Magnum store nearby. We were able to create our VERY OWN Magnums! I personally think we should be ice cream developers but that is just me.
We ventured into Piazza della Repubblica for dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe, before heading back to the apartment. The Hard Rock was in an old theatre and it was really cool. If you’re ever in Florence and need somewhere to eat, 10/10 would recommend.
Day three consisted of walking along the Arno river and crossing Ponte Vecchio into Oltrarno. We had planned on seeing Piazzale Michelangelo whilst we were wandering around and exploring. We got some extortionately priced ice cream (16 euros for two!!) and started towards the piazza. Another fair few steps and we had gotten to the top of Piazzale Michelangelo, where, once again, you could see all of Florence. This view was just as incredible as the one the day before and was definitely worth the walk. To take a rest, we sat by a waterfall for a while, before heading back to Piazza Signoria and exploring more of the city.
Saturday was the day we had booked to go to see David at the Accademia Gallery. I was expecting something big and over the top, which is the exact opposite of the Accademia. Down a small side street across from Duomo, you will find the gallery. There are four official rooms to explore. The first, filled with gold trims and incredible religious paintings. The second, a corridor of unfinished statues down towards the main event, David. In the third, a room full to the brim of statues and sculptures, and in the fourth, another filled with gold trims and remarkable paintings.
Once we had goggled at every piece of artwork that we could, we headed for, yep, more pizza and more exploring. This included amazing ice cream from the infamous Grom. When we got back to the apartment, we had a baby movie night to rest our weary feet from all the walking.
On day five, we headed to the infamous Mercato Centrale. This was our longest walk to get somewhere in Florence, about 30 minutes, showing how close everything really is. This took ‘market’ to a whole new level, we honestly did not know where to look and what to get. It was a maze of delicious looking food – with a guest information point and store too!
The rest of the day was a bit of a bust considering it started thundering and lightning and we had to head back to the apartment. We had planned to go into Boboli Gardens and I’m gutted we didn’t get the chance! It was still a bit miserable outside so we ordered some food and had another chill evening.
Monday was by far one of the days I was excited about the most. We were going to Pisa. We got up bright and early and hopped on a train from Santa Maria Novella Station headed towards Pisa.
When we got there, we headed straight for the tower and climbed up to the top. As someone who suffers from vertigo anyway, this was a weird experience but amazing nonetheless. The view was incredible and it was a great start to the day. We climbed down, got some souvenirs from the tourist stop, and went to shop at Corso Italia. I will say, I was expecting more from the shopping street BUT by that time, we were so hot and tired that shopping was not the first thing on our minds.
We ended up walking to the station through Piazza Vittorio Emanuelle II and getting an earlier train home. When we got back to Florence, we got some more incredible ice cream, this time from the infamous Venchi, and headed back to the apartment before going out to dinner. We went back to Piazza Signoria for dinner and it was such a beautiful atmosphere to sit in.
Our last day was a designated ‘shopping’ day. We headed to Piazza della Repubblica and around Duomo, ensuring we had enough souvenirs and everything we needed before heading home. We had one final meal at the Hard Rock Cafe (to end our trip as we began it) and headed back to the apartment to pack all of our things.
We had to leave the apartment early on Wednesday and ended up carrying our luggage and going the airport WAY earlier than we needed to be there. Oh well, we survived and we had a great time and I cannot wait to go back because I love Italy so so much.