Even in November, when the rains come and the sun rarely shines, Florence is one of the most beautiful cities we have ever visited. The old quarter is a UNESCO world heritage site and there is just one thing after another to see.
One of the most beautiful sights in Florence is the Cathedral. Yep, you read that correctly. The cathedral. Although it is being repaired (I guess anything built between the 13th and 15th centuries is likely almost always in need of repair), so good luck getting a photo without scaffolding in it somewhere….And, we can’t tell you what it looks like inside because, at this point, we are pretty much churched out….
There are plenty of other beautiful churches in Florence too.
Of course, no visit to Florence is complete without a trip to the Ponte Vecchio. Built in 1345 (at least in its current form), it was the only bridge across the Arno in Florence that the Nazi’s didn’t destroy in WWII. Initially, butchers occupied the shops on the bridge, but in 1593 Ferdinand I outlawed butcher shops on the bridges and decreed that only jewelers and goldsmiths could set up shops on the bridge. One story is that the Medici’s were fed up with the stench of the butchers on the bridge and wanted them gone, but I don’t know if that is true or not.
The views along the river are stunning when the sun shines.
And, when the heavy rains come, the river is a monster — pretty sure the water here is several feet higher than in the previous photo. In fact, we read that the while we were visiting Florence, the Arno reached the highest level it has reached in the last 27 years. The river was loud and fast and scary and dangerous.
And, one of the best parts of Florence is the fact that there is art everywhere. Piazza della Signoria is absolutely filled with sculpture and it is completely free to visit.
Buildings are covered in artwork.
And, if you are looking for a courtyard to dodge a rain shower, you never know what you might find.
Bottom line, Florence left us stunned with its beauty.