April 21, 2024

The Top 5 Attractions in Florence for Art Lovers

Florence is one of the most beautiful cities in Italy. If art is your passion, a trip to the birthplace of the Rennaissance is an experience you can’t afford to miss.

There is so much to see and do in Florence that you’ll need several days to visit all the main attractions. While you could do it all in a weekend, it’s best to allow at least five days or more. That way you will have plenty of time to sample delicious gelato and sip piping hot espressos as you watch the world go by.

To help you plan your itinerary, here are the top unmissable attractions:

The Uffizi Gallery

Top of our list is the home of many magnificent works by world-famous artists. Take a stroll through the galleries inside the Uffizi and you’ll be blown away by Botticelli’s Birth of Venus and Primavera, Leonardo Da Vinci’s Annunciation and Adoration of the Magi, the Venus of Urbino by Titian, and Caravaggio’s Medusa.

The Uffizi is home to so many important works that it is very easy to spend an entire day here, exploring the galleries. If you are short of time, you can check in advance where the most important works are. Then plan your tour accordingly. Even better, consider paying for a guided tour. This way you can learn some of the fascinating histories behind each painting and sculpture.

The Accademia Gallery

Next is the Accademia Gallery, which is home to Michaelangelo’s David. Every year, millions of tourists visit the Accademia Gallery to admire this most famous of statues. It truly is an amazing work and such is the popularity of the attraction, the queues to enter the gallery are often very long.

To avoid any delays, it is sensible to buy tickets to visit the Accademia Gallery ahead of time. You can do this directly via the museum’s official website. With a pre-paid ticket, you can skip the long queues and enter the gallery via a different entrance.

Aside from the famous statue of “David”, look out for Botticelli’s Madonna and Child and  Giambologna’s sculpture of the Rape of the Sabine Women.

The Basilica of Santa Croce

The Basilica of Santa Croce is where many of Florence’s most famous citizens are buried, including Michaelangelo and Machiavelli. The Santa Croce complex is home to a great many important works and frescos. There are 16 chapels, although some are more famous than others.

To the left of the chancel is the Vernio Chapel. This is where you can see frescos by San Silvestro and a crucifix by Donatello. The Baroncelli Chapel is the home of work by Taddeo Gaddi, a student of Giotto. The Peruzzi family chapel is decorated by the work of Giotto, dating back to 1317. You will also find more frescos painted by Giotto in the Bardi chapel.

Church of Santa Maria Novella

The Church of Santa Maria Novella isn’t as popular as the Basilica of Santa Croce, but it is of major architectural importance. It contains some wonderful works by Giotto, Leon Battista Alberti, and Fra Jacopo Talenti. You will find Masaccio’s Trinity on the far wall if you enter the church from the right.

The Pitti Palace

The Palantine Gallery, located inside the Pitti Palace, is a must visit. It contains a wonderful collection of masterpieces by Great Masters including Rubens, Titian, and Raphael. The rooms are styled exactly as they would have been in the 17th-Century, with each wall covered in paintings. Art has been organised according to the tastes of the Dukes who once inhabited the apartments. Works by Titian and Raphael can be found in the Quartiere del Volterrano. But do make sure you visit the Grand Duke’s Apartments, as this is where the most important paintings, frescoes, and sculptures are located.

Allow plenty of time for a visit to the Palatine Gallery and Royal Apartments. Here you’ll find an extraordinary number of great works of art to peruse.

The beauty of Florence is that virtually every church and chapel, no matter how modest they appear from the outside, contains beautiful frescoes and other works of art. Once you have explored the main attractions, spend some time wandering through the backstreets. Step inside the small churches and prepare to be amazed at the sight of 14th Century frescoes and exquisite relics freely accessible to ordinary people. It’s why Florence is so popular with fine art enthusiasts.

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