Florence, the capital of Tuscany, is considered the cradle of the Renaissance, destination of an aristocratic tourism since the 19th century. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, where the visitor is likely to lose himself in contemplative ecstasy, overwhelmed by the extraordinary beauty and grandeur of the many masterpieces of Renaissance art and architecture.
One of the most famous places is Piazza della Signoria, one of the most beautiful squares in Italy, overlooked by Palazzo Vecchio; a few steps away is the Duomo, the dome cathedral designed by Brunelleschi and the Giotto’s bell tower. The Gallery of the Accademia exhibits the original sculpture of Michelangelo's David, while the the Uffizi Gallery , one of the most important museums in the world, contains masterpieces such as Botticelli’s The Birth of Venus and Leonardo da Vinci's The Annunciation.
A walk on the Ponte Vecchio, which has been home to major goldsmiths’ workshops since the 17th century, is a must, with spectacular views over the Lungarni.
If you want to get to know the most characteristic part of Florence, don't miss the San Lorenzo Market, where you can buy souvenirs and handmade leather goods, ceramics and lily-coloured stationery from the many stalls.
And for a culinary break, here you will find many small restaurants, trattorias and osterias where you can taste typical dishes, such as ribollita, a vegetable soup with stale bread, Florentine tripe, and the famous "Florentine" Chianina steak. If, on the other hand, you prefer something quick to eat, there's nothing better than the characteristic 'lampredotto' sandwich or the 'schiacciata con la porchetta' (flat bread with pork).
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