4 Things In Florence
Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral (aka il Duomo)
The world’s 4th largest cathedral. Construction began in 1296: such a gravity-defying design, with a dome that size, had not been attempted since the building of the Pantheon. Filippo Brunelleschi took up the “Duomo” challenge in 1418, devising some new building techniques along the way, but sadly, he died before the final stages of construction were completed. The cathedral is completely covered with green, white and pink marble (now sparkling after a recent clean) and the interior is adorned with incredible frescoes and Donatello’s stained glass windows. The “Campanile di Giotto” (the bell tower), is the most striking feature of any view of the city: Giotto, the famous painter and architect designed the tower, however, by his death, in 1337, only the lowest part had been completed.
The most important civil building in town. Pay the entry fee to see some of the best preserved ceiling frescoes, or just stick your head in the front door to take a snoop!
One of the three bridges in the world occupied by shops, and Florence’s oldest. Spared from destruction during
WWII because of its age and artistic relevance, it has withstood floods and hordes of tourists during the centuries and the dazzling jewellers you see today are a far cry from the stinky butcher shops and blacksmiths that originally occupied it. Above the shops, there is a hidden walkway, linking Palazzo Pitti to the Uffizi, once used by the Medici family to avoid the public.
Santa Croce Church
It contains the monumental tombs of Galileo, Michelangelo, Machiavelli, and many other legendary artists. Visit the
historical workshops in the narrow street in front of the church, to see how some antique arts of the renaissance, such as mosaics and ceramics are still practiced today.