3-Day Ultimate Exploration Guide to Florence, Italy

Florence, Italy

3 days

Duomo
Medieval stone bridge Ponte Vecchio over Arno river
Ponte Vecchio bridge
Piazza del Duomo,Florence
Santa Maria del Fiore church

About Florence, Italy

Experience the heart of the Renaissance in Florence, Italy. This city is a treasure trove of art and architecture, home to masterpieces like Michelangelo's "David" and Brunelleschi's Dome. Wander through the Uffizi Gallery, stroll across the Ponte Vecchio, and marvel at the grandeur of the Florence Cathedral. Don't miss the chance to taste authentic Tuscan cuisine, especially the famous Florentine steak. Explore the local markets for unique souvenirs and enjoy the panoramic view from Piazzale Michelangelo. Florence's compact size makes it perfect for walking tours, allowing you to soak in its rich history and vibrant culture at your own pace. Whether you're an art lover, a foodie, or a history buff, Florence promises an unforgettable journey.

3-Day Itinerary

Day 1

Exploring the Art and History of Florence

Morning

Start your day with a visit to the Uffizi Gallery, one of the world's most famous art museums. Here, you can admire works by great Italian artists such as Botticelli, Michelangelo, and Leonardo da Vinci.

Lunch

Enjoy a traditional Italian lunch in a cozy trattoria in the historic center of Florence. Try the local specialties such as ribollita, a hearty Tuscan soup, and bistecca alla fiorentina, a large T-bone steak.

Afternoon

After lunch, take a leisurely stroll to the Ponte Vecchio, a medieval stone bridge over the Arno River. The bridge is lined with shops selling jewelry, art, and souvenirs.

Dinner

For dinner, head to a family-run osteria in the Oltrarno district. Here, you can enjoy a delicious meal of Tuscan cuisine, accompanied by a glass of Chianti, the region's famous red wine.

Evening

End your day with a visit to Piazzale Michelangelo, a hilltop square that offers stunning panoramic views of Florence. It's the perfect spot to watch the sunset over the city.

Morning

Begin your second day with a visit to the Accademia Gallery, home to Michelangelo's iconic statue of David. The gallery also houses a collection of Renaissance paintings and sculptures.

Lunch

Have lunch in a charming café in the San Lorenzo district. Try the panini toscani, a sandwich filled with local cheeses and cured meats.

Afternoon

Spend the afternoon exploring the Boboli Gardens, a historic park filled with beautiful statues, fountains, and grottoes. The gardens also offer fantastic views of Florence.

Dinner

Dine in a rustic trattoria in the Santa Croce district. Sample traditional dishes like pappardelle al cinghiale, a pasta dish with wild boar sauce.

Evening

In the evening, visit the Duomo, Florence's iconic cathedral. The cathedral is beautifully lit up at night, and you can climb to the top of the dome for a breathtaking view of the city.

Morning

On your final day, visit the Palazzo Pitti, a grand Renaissance palace that houses several museums. Don't miss the Palatine Gallery, which displays a vast collection of paintings by Raphael, Titian, and other masters.

Lunch

Enjoy lunch in a local enoteca in the Santo Spirito district. Here, you can sample a variety of Tuscan wines, paired with a selection of regional cheeses and charcuterie.

Afternoon

Spend the afternoon at the Mercato Centrale, a bustling food market where you can shop for local products like olive oil, wine, and fresh produce. It's also a great place to try street food like lampredotto, a Florentine specialty made from cow's stomach.

Dinner

For your final dinner in Florence, choose a ristorante in the Piazza della Signoria. Here, you can enjoy a leisurely meal while watching the world go by in one of the city's most famous squares.

Evening

End your trip with a night at the opera. The Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino offers a variety of performances, from classic operas to contemporary concerts.

Attractions in Itinerary (9)

Uffizi Gallery

One of the world's most famous fine art museums with collections of Renaissance paintings and sculptures.

Museums
Cultural Experiences
Architecture
Ponte Vecchio

2
Ponte Vecchio

Historic bridge over the Arno River, known for the shops that are built along it.

Attractions
Landmarks
Architecture
Piazzale Michelangelo

3
Piazzale Michelangelo

A square with a panoramic view of Florence, known for its bronze statue of David.

Attractions
Landmarks
Accademia Gallery

A museum best known as the home of Michelangelo's sculpture David.

Museums
Cultural Experiences
Architecture
Boboli Gardens

5
Boboli Gardens

Historic park that houses a collection of sculptures and offers beautiful views of the city.

Parks
Gardens
Cultural Experiences
Duomo

6
Duomo

The Duomo, officially known as the Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore, is the main church of Florence, Italy. It is one of the most iconic buildings in the city and a major tourist attraction. The cathedral complex includes the Baptistery and Giotto's Campanile, and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Attractions
Monuments
Religious Sites
Architecture
Palazzo Pitti

7
Palazzo Pitti

A vast, mainly Renaissance, palace in Florence, Italy. It is situated on the south side of the River Arno, a short distance from the Ponte Vecchio.

Attractions
Museums
Architecture
Mercato Centrale

8
Mercato Centrale

A large indoor market where you can buy local food products and eat traditional Tuscan cuisine.

Food and Drink
Shopping
Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino

9
Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino

One of the oldest music festivals in Italy, hosting opera, concert, and ballet performances.

Entertainment
Cultural Experiences

Local Food and Drinks (12)

Bistecca alla Fiorentina

Bistecca alla Fiorentina

A large, thick cut of T-bone steak that is grilled over a wood or charcoal fire, seasoned with salt, sometimes with black pepper, and olive oil, applied immediately after the meat is retired from the heat. This dish is closely tied to the identity of Florence.

Panzanella

Panzanella

A Tuscan chopped salad of soaked stale bread, onions and tomatoes that is popular in the summer. It often includes cucumbers, sometimes basil and is dressed with olive oil and vinegar. It is a staple of Florentine cuisine.

Pappa al Pomodoro

A thick Tuscan bread soup typically prepared with fresh tomatoes, bread, olive oil, garlic, basil, and various other fresh ingredients. It is usually made with stale or leftover bread, and can be served hot, room temperature, or chilled.

Ribollita

Ribollita

A famous Tuscan soup, a hearty potage made with bread and vegetables. There are many variations but the main ingredients always include leftover bread, cannellini beans, lacinato kale, cabbage, and inexpensive vegetables such as carrot, beans, chard, celery, potatoes and onion.

Lampredotto

Lampredotto

A typical Florentine dish, made from the fourth and final stomach of a cow, the abomasum. It is a popular street food in Florence and it is served in a bun with green sauce and spicy oil.

Cantucci

Cantucci

Also known as Biscotti di Prato, Cantucci are almond biscuits that originated in the city of Prato. They are twice-baked, oblong-shaped, dry, crunchy, and may be dipped in a drink, traditionally Vin Santo.

Schiacciata Fiorentina

A fluffy, orange-flavored cake that is traditionally made and served in Florence during the Carnival period. It is usually sprinkled with powdered sugar and a cocoa image of the Florentine lily.

Chianti

Chianti

A red wine that ranges from light-bodied to almost full-bodied, named after the Chianti region in central Tuscany. It is one of the most popular wines in Italy and it pairs well with many traditional Florentine dishes.

Vin Santo

Vin Santo

A style of Italian dessert wine. Traditional in Tuscany, these wines are often made from white grape varieties such as Trebbiano and Malvasia. It is typically served with cantucci at the end of a meal.

Negroni

Negroni

A popular Italian cocktail, made of one part gin, one part vermouth rosso, and one part Campari, garnished with orange peel. It is considered an apéritif and was invented in Florence, Italy.

Espresso

Espresso

A type of coffee preparation method and an important part of Italian culture. In Florence, like in the rest of Italy, espresso is a staple and is often enjoyed multiple times throughout the day.

Pecorino Toscano

Pecorino Toscano

A firm-textured ewe’s milk cheese produced in Tuscany. Since 1996 it has enjoyed protected designation of origin (PDO) status. It can be enjoyed as a table cheese or used grated in many traditional Florentine recipes.

Best time to visit

The best time to visit Florence, Italy is typically during the spring (April to June) and fall (September and October). During these periods, the weather is generally pleasant, and the city is less crowded compared to the peak summer months. These seasons also coincide with some of the city's popular events like the Gelato Festival in spring or the wine harvest festivals in fall. However, if you're interested in visiting museums and indoor attractions without the crowds, winter can also be a good time to visit.

National holidays

Here you can find the national calendar of all public holidays for the year. These dates are subject to change as official changes are announced, so check back regularly for updates.

DateDayHoliday Name

January 1

Mon

New Year's Day

January 6

Sat

Epiphany

March 31

Sun

Easter Sunday

April 1

Mon

Easter Monday

April 25

Thu

Liberation Day

May 1

Wed

Labor Day / May Day

June 2

Sun

Republic Day

August 15

Thu

Assumption of Mary

November 1

Fri

All Saints' Day

December 8

Sun

Feast of the Immaculate Conception

December 25

Wed

Christmas Day

December 26

Thu

St. Stephen's Day

Please note that during national and public holidays, opening hours for establishments, museums, etc. may vary. Don't forget to check in advance!

How to get around

Florence is a compact city with most of the major attractions located in the city center. Walking is often the best way to get around, especially in the pedestrian-only zones.

Florence is a bike-friendly city with many bike rental services available. It's a quick and eco-friendly way to get around the city.

The public bus system in Florence is extensive and can take you to most parts of the city. Tickets can be purchased at tobacco shops, newsstands, and some cafes.

Florence has a modern tram system that connects the city center with the suburbs. It's a quick and efficient way to travel longer distances.

Taxis are readily available in Florence. They can be hailed on the street, found at taxi stands, or booked in advance.

Ridesharing services like Uber are available in Florence. It's a convenient option for getting around, especially if you're traveling with a group or have a lot of luggage.

Renting a car can be useful if you plan to explore the Tuscan countryside. However, driving in the city center can be challenging due to the limited traffic zones and narrow streets.

Florence's main train station, Santa Maria Novella, offers connections to other Italian cities and towns. It's a good option if you plan to do day trips outside of Florence.

While we strive for accuracy in our "How to get around" section, the information may not always be up-to-date or 100% accurate; we highly recommend cross-checking with local resources before your travel.

Important information

Currency€ EUR

Time zoneUTC+1

Driving sideRight

Emergency phoneAmbulance: 112, 118; Fire: 112, 115; Police: 112, 113;

Drinking waterYes, but some opt for bottled water

Power sockets

Power socket type CPower socket type FPower socket type L

Voltage230 V

Things to know about Florence, Italy as a first time visitor

1

Florence is a city that is best explored on foot, so pack comfortable walking shoes.

2

The city can be quite crowded, especially during the peak tourist season (April to October), so be prepared for crowds.

3

The local currency is the Euro (€). Credit cards are widely accepted, but it's always a good idea to carry some cash.

4

Tipping is not mandatory in Italy, but it's customary to leave a small amount if you're happy with the service.

5

The official language is Italian, but English is widely spoken in tourist areas.

6

Florence is in the Central European Time Zone (CET), which is 1 hour ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC+1).

7

The city has a Mediterranean climate. Summers (June to August) can be hot, with temperatures ranging from 86°F to 95°F (30°C to 35°C). Winters (December to February) are mild, with temperatures ranging from 32°F to 50°F (0°C to 10°C).

8

Florence is known for its leather goods, so consider visiting the local markets for a unique souvenir.

9

The tap water in Florence is safe to drink.

10

Public restrooms can be hard to find, and many charge a small fee for use.

11

Florence is generally safe, but like any major city, it's wise to be cautious of pickpockets in crowded areas.

12

The city has strict laws against eating or sitting on steps and public buildings, so be mindful of where you take a break.

13

Smoking is banned in all indoor public places in Italy, including bars and restaurants.

14

Florence has a ZTL (Limited Traffic Zone) in the city center, which means that only authorized vehicles can enter.

15

Public transportation in Florence is reliable and efficient. The city has a network of buses and trams that can take you around the city.

16

Many museums and attractions in Florence require advance booking, so plan your itinerary ahead of time.

17

Florence is known for its cuisine. Don't miss out on trying local dishes like Bistecca alla Fiorentina (Florentine Steak) and Gelato.

18

Florence has a tourist tax that is charged per person, per night for stays in the city. The amount varies depending on the type of accommodation.

19

It's customary in Italy to say 'Buongiorno' (Good Morning) or 'Buonasera' (Good Evening) when entering shops and restaurants.

20

Most shops in Florence close for a few hours in the afternoon for 'riposo' (rest), so plan your shopping accordingly.

Basic Italian to know as a first time visitor

English phrase

Native phrase

Pronunciation

When to use it

Hello

Ciao

Chow

Greeting someone

Goodbye

Arrivederci

Ah-ree-veh-der-chee

Leaving someone

Please

Per favore

Pair fa-voh-re

Asking for something

Thank you

Grazie

Graht-see-eh

Showing appreciation

Yes

See

Agreeing with someone

No

No

No

Disagreeing with someone

Excuse me

Mi scusi

Mee skoo-zee

Getting someone's attention

I'm sorry

Mi dispiace

Mee dee-spya-che

Apologizing

Do you speak English?

Parla inglese?

Par-la in-gle-se?

Asking if someone speaks English

I don't understand

Non capisco

Non ka-pee-sko

When you don't understand what's being said

Where is the bathroom?

Dove è il bagno?

Doh-veh eh il ban-yo?

Looking for the bathroom

How much does it cost?

Quanto costa?

Kwan-toh costa?

Asking for the price of something

I would like...

Vorrei...

Voh-rei

Making a request

Help!

Aiuto!

Aye-oo-toh

In case of emergency

Can I have the bill, please?

Posso avere il conto, per favore?

Pos-so ave-re il con-to, per fa-voh-re

Asking for the bill at a restaurant

Where is...?

Dove è...?

Doh-veh eh

Asking for directions

Good morning

Buongiorno

Bwon-jor-no

Greeting someone in the morning

Good evening

Buonasera

Bwo-na-se-ra

Greeting someone in the evening

Good night

Buonanotte

Bwo-na-not-te

Saying goodnight

Cheers!

Salute!

Sa-loo-te

Making a toast

Packing List

  • Clothing

  • Comfortable walking shoes

  • Lightweight clothing

  • A light jacket or sweater for evenings

  • Underwear and socks for 3 days

  • Sleepwear

  • Swimsuit (if your hotel has a pool)

  • Sunglasses

  • Hat for sun protection

  • Toiletries

  • Travel-sized shampoo and conditioner

  • Travel-sized body wash or soap

  • Toothbrush and toothpaste

  • Deodorant

  • Razor and shaving cream

  • Makeup and makeup remover

  • Sunscreen

  • Hand sanitizer

  • Travel-sized first aid kit

  • Prescription medications

  • Contact lenses and solution (if needed)

  • Travel documents and essentials

  • Passport

  • Driver's license or other ID

  • Credit and debit cards

  • Cash in local currency

  • Hotel reservation confirmation

  • Travel insurance documents

  • Emergency contact information

  • Maps and guidebooks

  • Electronics and gadgets

  • Smartphone

  • Charger for smartphone

  • Universal power adapter

  • Camera

  • Charger for camera

  • Headphones

  • Portable power bank

  • Miscellaneous items

  • Travel pillow

  • Earplugs and eye mask

  • Snacks

  • Water bottle

  • Travel-sized laundry detergent

  • Travel-sized umbrella

  • Books or e-reader for downtime

  • Italian phrasebook

Weather Conditions

Florence, Italy, is a city that experiences a humid subtropical climate. This means that it has hot, humid summers and cool, damp winters. If you're planning to visit during the summer months (June to August), be prepared for high temperatures that can reach up to 86°F (30°C). It's advisable to pack light clothing, sunscreen, and a hat to protect yourself from the sun. Also, ensure to stay hydrated and take breaks in shaded areas when sightseeing. In contrast, the winter months (December to February) can be quite chilly with temperatures dropping to around 32°F (0°C). Therefore, pack warm clothing, including a heavy coat, scarves, gloves, and hats. Despite the cold, winter can be a great time to visit as the city is less crowded and the lines for major attractions are shorter. The shoulder seasons, spring (March to May) and fall (September to November), offer more mild and comfortable temperatures, ranging from 50°F (10°C) to 77°F (25°C). These periods are often considered the best times to visit Florence, as the weather is pleasant and the city is less crowded than in the summer. Regardless of when you visit, always remember to check the local weather forecast before your trip to pack appropriately. Also, keep in mind that weather can be unpredictable, so it's always a good idea to pack a compact umbrella or a light rain jacket. Lastly, Florence is a city best explored on foot, so regardless of the season, comfortable walking shoes are a must. Enjoy your trip to this beautiful Italian city!

MonthHi / Lo (°C)Weather Overview

January

15° / 1°

January is the coldest month in Florence with occasional snowfall. It's a good time to visit museums and indoor attractions.

February

16° / 2°

February is still chilly, but the city starts to warm up slightly. It's a great time to explore the city without the crowds.

March

19° / 5°

March sees the arrival of spring with warmer temperatures and blooming flowers. It's a good time for outdoor activities.

April

22° / 8°

April is a pleasant month with mild temperatures. It's a great time to visit the gardens and parks in Florence.

May

25° / 11°

May is a beautiful month with warm temperatures and plenty of sunshine. It's an ideal time for sightseeing and outdoor activities.

June

29° / 15°

June is the start of the summer season with hot temperatures. It's a perfect time for beach trips and outdoor dining.

July

32° / 18°

July is the hottest month in Florence. It's a great time to enjoy gelato and cool off in the city's fountains.

August

32° / 18°

August is another hot month, but the city is less crowded as locals go on vacation. It's a good time to visit popular tourist spots.

September

29° / 15°

September is a pleasant month with mild temperatures. It's a great time to visit the vineyards and enjoy the wine harvest.

October

25° / 11°

October sees the arrival of autumn with cooler temperatures. It's a good time for hiking and enjoying the fall foliage.

November

21° / 7°

November is a cool month with occasional rain. It's a good time to visit museums and enjoy the local cuisine.

December

17° / 3°

December is a festive month with Christmas markets and lights. It's a good time to enjoy the holiday spirit in Florence.

Did you know?

Did you know that Florence, Italy is known as the birthplace of the Renaissance, a period of great cultural and artistic change in Europe?

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