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Smiley4 May 13th, 2007 02:21 PM

Message for Ira and friends
 
I am travelling to Venice from Lucca on a Monday via Florence.Was planning to stop in florence for a few hours to sightsee.Most places are closed on a Monday.Are there any places we can visit on Monday so that we don't waste time.

We will be then be going to Rome from Venice and planning to stop for a few hours in Florence for a break.This will then be on a Thursday...will we be able to do either Academia or Uffizzi...pls reply asap as we are leaving on Wedneday.Thanks

annhig May 13th, 2007 02:28 PM

hi, smiley4,

a quick google brought up the duomo web-site, confirming that the cathedral, dome, bell-tower and museum are all open on a monday [and every other day except sundays and feast days, when certain bits are closed]

so there should be plenty to occupy you on a monday.

as for the thursday, do book in advance - then you should be able to do wither museum, but not both.

the accademia is the smaller of the two - an hour would suffice really, but to do the uffizi justice, you need at least two.

to do both, you really need a day though with reservations, we did the uffizi in the morning, [8.30am entry] had lunch, then the accademia in the early afternoon. We were all museumed out by 3pm.

Have a great trip,

regards, ann

ira May 13th, 2007 04:19 PM

Hi S,

Good advice from Ann.

Considering how you are trying to see Florence, I would skip it and spend the extra time in Venice.

However, here is my day in Florence. You can split it as you feel necessary:

A DAY IN FLORENCE:

Train to Florence SMN:
The Luggage Office is to your left as you leave the train.

From Piazza d' Stazione, walk up via Nazionale to via d'Ariento and the Mercato Centrale, wander through.

Take any street going NE to Via Degli Alfani and go right to the Accademia for The David.

Take via Ricasoli SE to the Duomo, the Baptistry and the Opera Museum (Originals of the bronzes on the doors)

From the Campanile, take via Calzaiuoli S (do some window shopping) to the Piazza d' Signoria. Look around, take a break.

Continue S to the Uffizi. Visit.

From the Uffizi, walk W along the Arno River to the Ponte Vecchio.

(You can walk up to the Pitti Palace and the Boboli Gardens if there is time. Great views of Florence from the top of the Gardens)

If you have time, walk E along the S bank of the river to Ponte alle grazie and cross over to visit Santa Croce.

If not, go W along the Arno from Ponte Vecchio to Ponte S. Trinita and go right. Go left on Via d'Spada to via d'Fossi and go right to Santa Maria Novella. Look around.

SMN is across the square from the train station.

Be sure to have lots of gelato (in a cup, not a cone), take some wine breaks and a light lunch.

Train schedules, prices and tickets are at www.trenitalia.com

Bus routes are at http://www.ataf.net/
Buy your ticket before you get on the bus. Stamp it in the yellow box on the bus.

Uffizi and Academia Museum Reservations
The easiest and cheapest way is to call Florence 1016868 (dial around number), 011 (U.S. international access code) 39 (Italy's country code) then 055-294-883 8:30-18:30 M-F and 8:30-12:00 Sat. Florence time. There is a long listing of press 1 for this and 2 for that--press 4 for bookings. You will get an English speaking operator and in 2-3 minutes YOU CAN RESERVE FOR BOTH. This is through the reservation service at the Uffizi and costs beyond the normal entry fee only about 3 euro for the service. This is MUCH cheaper than the commercial booking services.

You will not be charged for the reservations unless you use them.

Have a nice visit.

((I))

SusanaW May 14th, 2007 11:13 PM

Ira - I have a question - does that number for the museum reservations only work from the US? We're traveling to Italy next week to visit friends who live in Napoli and they have tried the number and it just rings - no one answers? Is there another number for calls made within Italy?

annhig May 15th, 2007 01:43 PM

hi, susanna,

IRA's away now, but I can confirm that the number works from the UK. I can't see why it wouldn't work from the US or italy, as long as you get the codes right.

I suugest that if phoning internally from Italy, they look up the local code for Florence, and go from there, or try directory enquiries!

regards, ann


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