Florence in a day

Old Aug 15th, 2002, 03:51 PM
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Florence in a day

In a few weeks I will be in Italy with a group of friends. This will be the first time there for all of us. Since our time is limited, they want to stay in Rome the whole time, but I have always wanted to see Florence.

Three years ago, the same group of friends and I went to London, and took the Eurostar to Paris for the day. We were able to see quite a bit using one of the "hop on/hop off" bus tours.

My question to anyone who has been to Florence is this: Do they have the same type of bus tours there?

I know I would be able to see much more if I actually stayed overnight, but I am not really comfortable staying by myself. I would like to go for the day, satisfy my couriosity and promise myself that I will return in the future and stay longer.

Old Aug 15th, 2002, 04:25 PM
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Florence is compact and very walkable.
How long are you going to be in Italy? Why do your friends only want to see Rome?
Dont miss Michaelangelo's David, the Duomo and the Uffizi. This would be a packed day.
Old Aug 15th, 2002, 04:44 PM
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Courtney: As Jackie said "compact and very walkable". With the train station in 1 corner basically all the museums and historic sites are in a 1sq/mi-1.6sq/km block.
But get reservations before-hand for the Uffizi or Accademia. Florence is only 95min away. Regards, Walter
Old Aug 15th, 2002, 06:45 PM
John G
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Courtney, I can't imagine just seeing Firenze in one day, but if you must, stick to things that are NOT time consuming. Definitely see DAVID at Accademia, for that you can do in 20 minutes. Don't go to Uffizi if you only have such limited time. You need at least 2 days to see the Uffizi collection properly. (You can gaze at Hugo van der Goes,"Portinari Triptych," for 1/2 hour alone.)

Spend your time seeing things by wandering, like Ponte Vecchio, Duomo, Boboli Gardens (where you can see an unbelievable view of Firenze from the Kaffee Haus). It is also easy to get in and out of Santa Croce rather quickly.

While you are wandering, you can grab some gelato from Vivoli or some other gelateria, which makes everything seem even better.

Buy a good map because it is easy to get lost in Firenze among the throngs of tourists.
Old Aug 15th, 2002, 10:59 PM
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See the Uffizi next time when you have more time - it shouldn't be rushed. Get early reservations ahead of time for the Accademia to see David. Do not go without reservations or you'll be there forever and waste your precious day. Stop by the San Marco monastery museum if you wish. From there go to Santa Croce. Stop in a little cafe to get a quick salami sandwich for lunch and then go for a hot chocolate/torta della nonna at the Cafe Rivoire in the Piazza Della Signoria. Go see the Duomo and climb the Campanile. Shop in San Lorenzo, cab ot the Boboli Gardens. Before you leave (sunset?) take a cab to the Piazzale Michelangelo for the view of the Duomo across the Arno. Don't bother with a bus tour - you can walk everywhere and see things better on foot. If you plan for any museums or anything that requires tickets GET THEM IN ADVANCE. Have fun!
Old Aug 16th, 2002, 07:56 AM
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We too really only had one full day for florence. BUT, we saw a lot!

We had reservations for the Accademia at 9am. Went from there to the Duomo and climbed the Campinille. Walked around using Rick Steve's guide to a Renaissance walk in Florence (I know a lot of people here do not like RS, BUT he does help out if you don't have a lot of time!)

We then had lunch at the Piazza Signoria, and toured the Palazzo Vecchio, which I loved! We had Gellato on the way back to our hotel to pick something up. Had reservations at the Uffizi at 4pm. Went through in about 2 hours.

Aftwards we walked along the Arno and went to the Ponte Vechhio. Granted we never stopped to look at a painting for 1/2 an hour, but most people who go to museums do not do that either (not all of us are Art History majors).

We appreciated everything we saw. It was all very beutiful! Did not feel rushed at all and we got a good feel for the city.

I know that there were a lot of things that we missed. But that just means we have to go back! Take the earliest Eurostar from Rome that you can get. I believe that it only takes 1 and a 1/2 hours. Then take the latest train back that you can get.
Go for it!
Old Aug 16th, 2002, 08:15 AM
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The number to call for reservations (it seems to be the same for both the Uffizi gallery and the Accademia) is 39-(0)55-294883. (I think that from outside the country you dial 39-55-294883, from within Italy you need to dial the extra "0".) You don't need to call too far in advance, but don't wait until the last minute, either - the reserved tickets are sometimes sold out for several days ahead.
Old Aug 16th, 2002, 08:18 AM
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Courtney: I'm with xxxx. Would three days be better? Of course. But, see what you can. Florence is very walkable. xxxx lays out a very good approach to a day in Florence whether it comes from RS or not. Go for it and know you will return.
Old Aug 16th, 2002, 08:21 AM
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Two days for the Uffizi is a bit much. 3-4 hours is plenty. And if you don't get tickets ahead of time, go around 3:30 - 4:00, you'll walk right in.
Old Aug 16th, 2002, 08:25 AM
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The historic core section of Florence is very walkable; and others have neglected to mention that it's pedestrian only during daytime. I think there are mini-buses & scooters along the major streets. There are no 'hop on/hop off' touring options.

Because the major sites are close, you can pack alot in a well-planned day. And you certainly should include the Uffizi in your itinerary. I may not be as much an art afficionado as others. Strolled thru the entire Uffizi in 2 1/2 hrs and felt that I saw & enjoyed much. DO get your tickets ahead and avoid long lines.

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