A basic walking tour of Florence usually includes the Cathedral, Giotto's Bell Tower, the Baptistery, Palazzo Vecchio, Ponte Vecchio and Palazzo Pitti; however, in our opinion, you should also dedicate some time to Piazza Santa Croce and Piazzale Michelangelo. Start very early in the morning with a visit to the Cathedral square, take your time and head later to Piazza della Signoria; after admiring the beauty of Palazzo Vecchio and the Loggia dei Lanzi, look for Via dei Gondi and follow it through, continue straight onto Borgo dei Greci and reach Piazza Santa Croce with its beautiful Franciscan Basilica (also known as the “Temple of the Italian Glories”).
We suggest you cross the River Arno and have your lunch in the San Niccolò Neighborhood (we recommend Osteria Antica Mescita or Enoteca Fuori Porta); after a good meal and a glass of wine, look for Via del Monte alle Croci and follow it until you see the Viale Galileo on your left: this road will take you straight to the Piazzale Michelangelo, famous for being “Florence's Terrace”. Enjoy the view and retrace your steps back to Via San Niccolò, turn left and continue straight onto Via dei Bardi in order to admire the Ponte Vecchio. Palazzo Pitti (your last stop) is just 4 minutes walk from the Bridge; after visiting it, you can take a stroll around the Oltrarno district and perhaps enjoy your dinner in Piazza Santo Spirito (we recommend you the Osteria Santo Spirito).
On your second day, you should visit the Uffizi Gallery and the Accademia Gallery: the first is best known for its greatest collection of Renaissance paintings (e.g. the Birth of Venus by Botticelli, the Madonna of the Goldfinch by Raphael, the Battle of San Romano by Paolo Uccello...); the second is a must-see for anyone who's in love with Michelangelo Buonarroti (THE STAR – the original David – is currently housed here, along with many other sculptures by the High Renaissance Master). If you want to avoid standing in lines outside the museums, we suggest you book your tickets in advance; as for the restaurants, we recommend you grab a quick lunch at All'Antico Vinaio (2 minutes walk from the Uffizi) and a dinner at Osteria del Caffè Italiano (the most delicious pizza in Florence, 10 minutes walk from the Accademia).
We hope you find these tips useful and enjoy your time in this amazing city. This 2-day itinerary is also very flexible and can be modified and adapted to suit your needs.
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