7 things you should never do in Florence
Florence - a magical travel destination in Italy
As if Italy was not great enough a travel destination, Europe's southern boot accommodates several of the world's most impressive cities. There is hardly any other country which keeps the magic of the "Old World" alive like Italy does. Just think of Rome, one of the oldest cradles of culture, the fashion metropolis of Milan, the culinary heart of Naples or the Shakespeare setting of Verona - Italy is rich in historically unique cities and a real treasure chest for culture and Europe enthusiasts. The city which impressed us most - and we thank Ilona for her inspiring impression - is the wonderful Renaissance city of Florence. As part of her blog event, we show you another picture of Florence.
There is nothing we could say to do justice to the beautiful architecture and rich culture in Florence. Too many masters have left their mark in the city and each of them is worth a whole blog entry. That is why we are talking about something different, something everyone who has been to Florence or is planning to go there can understand. We have had our own experiences with the magnificent city and show you our personal impressions and the things we have learned in "7 things you should never do in Florence"...
As magical, breathtaking, glorious, perfect and wonderful Florence may be, there are several blunders which countless newcomers to Florence make every year. We tell you the city's 7 most important don'ts. Have fun reading them!
7 things you should never do in Florence:
1. Doubt the masters
The Tower of Pisa is definitely tilting. In addition, it also sinks a few centimetres every year. As if that wasn't bad enough, not only the tower has a dangerous tilt but numerous other well-known buildings in Florence too. But how can we explain this constructional fault without insulting the Old Masters? After all, Donatello, Brunelleschi and Masaccio worked here. Pisa is about one hour away from Florence and the leaning tower has become Tuscany's landmark. The ground in this region is very sandy. That is why several buildings are sinking into a tilting position. Those who think that this is a reason for doubting the masters' construction skills, however, had better to this in their hotel room. The Italians, expecially those who live in Tuscany, are very proud of their architectural heritage and prepared to defend it at any time.
2. Go by car
Florence is a city which has grown organically with many small alleys and even more cobblestone. There were no cars when the city was built centuries ago. That's why the parking situation and the traffic within the city are chaotic. It is much more relaxed and often quicker to walk. You should leave the noisy honking behind and discover the city's sights along the pedestrian ways. You don't even have an option in the city centre because rented and foreign are forbidden here.
3. Start a diet
If you want to get rid of some winter fat on a trip to Florence, you will not enjoy yourself. As soon as you enter the city, you will be surrounded by countless regional delicacies. Pizza, pasta, home-made ice cream - that is only the beginning and the specialities you get in the city are even more delicious. Don't punish yourself by trying to refrain from all the delicacies. Florence is a city of indulgence and you would regret not having tried at least one, two or ten of the delicious kinds of ice cream, which are sold at every street corner.
4. Have no time
One single day in Florence offers you as much as a glance through a tiny keyhole. To actually get to know the city, you need at least a long weekend but it's better to plan one or two weeks. Even then, you will not be able to see all buildings, cathedrals, bridges, historical alleys, monuments, museums, restaurants, parks, galleries, ice cream shops, squares, bars, churches, meeting places and sights the city has to offer. So make sure you have enough time and think about what you definitely want to see.
5. Not know Da Vinci and Michelangelo
If you have never been to Florence and never heard the names "da Vinci" and "Michelangelo", you have probably not have the best education but that's no reason to despair. If you are going on a trip to Florence, you will definitely read or here these names at some point. Florence was the sphere of countless artists, many of whom are among the most important in human history. The best-known ones are probably Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo. Their work is exhibited in Florence and it is the subject of many special exhibitions and museums. Other names you should keep in mind on your trip to Florence are Dante Alighieri and Giovanni Boccaccio.
6. Pay by card
VISA card, MasterCard and debit cards are very practical when you're going abroad. You don't have to carry cash with you, which prevents you from being mugged. If you lose your card, you can have it disabled. These are all good reasons for using your cards on holiday abroad. This is not the case in Florence, however. It's best you don't even try paying by card and bring enough cash with you instead, otherwise you're leisure opportunities are very limited. Almost all museums and tourist attractions in Florence only take cash and many restaurants don't like the plastic card either. We recommend you plan ahead, estimate how much money you will need every day and then only carry that daily amount with you.
7. Skip lunch
Like in many Mediterranean countries in Europe, dinner is not served before 9 p.m. in Italy, especially in Florence. So, if you skip lunch in anticipation of an abundant dinner at 6 p.m., you are left standing by most restaurants. The Italians eat late. Why? The Northern Europeans have been asking themselves this question for centuries. It has probably to do with the climate. It is still very hot in the early evening, especially in summer, which is not a great condition for cooking or eating. The southerners sit down to have a hearty Italian dish when the air cools down.
Do you have any more tips and tricks regarding Florence? Then please sharwe them with us in a comment.