Return time and again and still you would not be able to drink in everything Florence has to offer. This cradle of renaissance has more artistic treasures per square meter than any other city you can think of! Where else can you stroll the same streets walked by Leonardo da Vinci, Botticelli and Michelangelo while relishing one of the world’s best gelato? 😎
Our first destination in Florence was indeed the Piazza Duomo, which is filled with some of Europe’s finest building ensembles – the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, Giotto’s Campanile, and the Baptistery with their dazzling walls of intricate inlaid colored marble sure enamored us. It dominates the city’s skyline and still defines the scale by overshadowing the other buildings in the square.
The cathedral is Italy’s third-largest church, but rather than the size what draws it to you is the sheer magic of artistry. It is said that the alternating colors of the inlaid marble were chosen to exemplify the two basic principles of Florentine art: “rectitude and beauty.” True to its words, the splendor exuded by this architectural marvel is really one of a kind. <3
If you thought this was heights of magnificence wait until you see this dome! The immensity of this dome designed by Brunelleschi will surely take your breath away. So will the stairs leading up to it I heard and we did not venture to climb the 500 or so stairs. The views are deemed spectacular covering the entire city and beyond to the Tuscan hills. Anyone up for this? ^^’
We then proceeded to see another famous landmark Piazza della Signoria. If Piazza Duomo was more about religion, the Signoria Square is the symbol of civic life in the city. Over the principal side of the piazza rises the massive Palazzo Vecchio, Florence’s town hall (still the seat of the local government, it is a working building housing many offices that Florentines use on a daily basis, as well as the mayor’s office). The square is a reminder of great triumphs and is replete with some awe-inspiring sculptures, each of them with a story to marvel about.
Just outside the Palazzo Vecchio you can see a copy of Michelangelo’s David kept to represent the perfect symbol of republican virtues, of courage and strength in the service of the State. The original was moved to the Accademia gallery due to the damages caused. The statue of Marzocco, the heraldic lion of Florence holding the city’s coat of arms, the one of Perseus With The Head of Medusa by Cellini and the Fountain of the Neptune were a few others which are quite renowned. I was always besotted by Greek mythology and my visit to Italy was such a great opportunity to learn more about it and see and experience everything for real. <3
Our time in Florence came quickly to an end before we could even anticipate it. But we were too excited to dwell on it since our next spot was the Leaning Tower of Pisaaa! Yeaay. I had seen countless pics of people “propping up” the tower with their hand or even finger 😀 And I was excited, I was about to as well. Thankfully it did not need any photoshopping or professional photography and as usual my hubs to the rescue 😉 One of the tourists was kind enough to take a fun photo of both of us as well 😀
The Leaning Campanile, along with its massive Cathedral, Baptistry and Camposanto Monumentale (Monumental Cemetery) in the immaculate and gorgeous setting of green lawns is collectively known as Piazza dei Miracoli or the Field of Miracles. Did you know that at about 183 feet tall, the tower leans around FOUR degrees, which means that at the top, it is actually displaced around 13 feet from its bottom. 😮 Yikes! But fear not, since its architecturally still sound enough for you to huff and puff your way through the 300 steps to the top. 😀
I guess I would regale you with my Rome and Vatican City stories in another post. Oh yes, Rome is there as well! How can a trip to Italy be complete without a visit to the powerhouse of world history, with an exhilarating city scape replete with renowned monuments, the Eternal City Rome? We will be starting from the world’s smallest country Vatican City which by the way has the world’s second-largest church, so see you in St.Peters Square next 🙂 Or should we take a detour to the Big Apple ? 😉 Let’s see, shall we 😀
Much Love, ❤️