Florence is one of those places you need to take your time to explore since there is so much to do and see. I wish we had a full week here, but unfortunately only had two days to pack in as much as we could.
Here is my list of the top things to do if your time here is limited...
THINGS TO DO
See the Sunset from Piazza Michaelangelo
This also happens to be #1 on TripAdvisor, so if you don't listen to me, at least listen to the other 15,000 people who agree that this is the top thing you need to do in Florence. The steps leading to the viewpoint take about 20 minutes to walk up, and you will be rewarded with the gorgeous postcard view of the entire city. Do this at golden hour right before sunset and I promise you won't regret it. Tip: Bring a bottle of wine or get dinner to-go (or both) and enjoy the views up here.
Browse Mercato Centrale
This main market is a foodie's paradise, with dozens of speciality shops selling everything from spices and fresh pasta, to fruits and vegetables of every color. There are also a few food stands, where you can grab some delicious lunch before you head out. I recommend the "Homemade Pasta" booth, where you can choose your type of fresh pasta and sauce for only 5 Euros/plate.
Shop and Bargain your way through San Lorenzo Market You can pretty much call this leather heaven. Florence is famous for its leather and leather goods, so make your way to this market for bargain deals on everything from wallets and jackets to bags of all shapes and sizes.Catedrale di Santa
Maria Del Fiore What a breathtakingly beautiful church that you have to see for yourself. This iconic cathedral is located in the Piazza del Duomo and includes the Baptistery and Giotto's Campanile. You will see this muted-red dome in every skyline view of the city, so this truly is a must-see in Florence.
Visit Ponte Vechhio Most cities I've been to have that one iconic bridge that everyone flocks to on their visit. This one, which is built over the Arno River, happens to be one of the most unique bridges I've seen since it looks like a regular bustling street when you walk across it, and looks like a row of houses from the outside. These "houses" are actually runnings shops with jewelers and art dealers!
Piazza della Repubblica This famous square has a long, winding history since it marks the center of the city since Roman times, and has gone through phases of restoration and change throughout the centuries. It's actually quite interesting, so read about it here if you're interested!
Take in the History at the Spectacular Piazza della Signoria Without a doubt, this square (in front of the Palazzo Vecchio) is probably one of the most jaw-dropping ones I've seen on any of my trips. It has a rich history of being the focal point of the Florentine Republic, and you could spend hours here admiring the statues and buildings all around this L-shaped square.
This place is a must visit spot that is famous for their beautiful latte art - just ask the barista and give them your design request!
Il Gusto Pizza
It's hard to go wrong with any kind of pizza in Italy, but anything from this place is seriously delicious
This place makes one of the best paninis I have had in my life. For 5 Euros, you'll be stuffed for hours! I recommend the classic salami with soft cheese spread or the proscuitto sandwich.
Edoardo il Gelato Biologico
Gelato is a must, whether for breakfast, lunch, dinner or dessert. Check out the unique flavors at the gelato shop right near the Catedral de Santa Maria del Fiore. I tried the green tea and chocolate cherry flavors, and I think I'm still dreaming of them right now...
Bye, Florence, I love you (and your food)