Florence Visitor information
Florence is an Italian city of nearly 400,000 inhabitans and capital of the province and the Region of Tuscany. It is the eighth Italian city in terms of population and the first of the region to be capital of Italy from 1865 to 1871, after the unification of the country in 1861. As an important university centre and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it is considered the birthplace of the Renaissance, as well as renowned as one of the most beautiful cities in the world, thanks to its numerous monuments and museums. Florence is recognized as a city of Art, with a priceless heritage of architecture, paintings, sculptures, historical and scientific memories. The heart of Florence is Piazza della Signoria, with the majestic Palazzo Vecchio, the Loggia dei Lanzi and the nearby Uffizi Gallery, one of the most renowned art museums in the world. The Duomo is accompanied by Giotto’s Campanile, one of the most beautiful belltowers in Italy.
The locals have a love-hate relationship with the Arno river, which has brought both the benefits of the trade and the disasters of the floods. Among the bridges, which cross the river, the Ponte Vecchio is unique, with the characteristic jewelery shops in the little houses built upon it. Crossed by the noble Vasari Corridor, it is the only bridge, which survived the Second Warld War. Florentines boast of possessing the best artistic works of beauty, both female (Botticelli’s Venus) and male (Michelangelo’s David). There are also many literary cues in the city: from the districts of the tower houses, where the plaques commemorate the verses that these places inspired in Dante Alighieri, to the serenity of the Medici villas, where the Neo-Platonic Academy of Lorenzo il Magnifico often met, to the theatres at the Pergola and the Boboli Garden where the melodramas which lead to the grand opera were acted out. The Florentine Dialect is the language that gave birth to the modern Italian, chosen especially for the cultural prestige that it carried at that time. Florentine was actually the language used by Francesco Petrarca and Giovanni Boccaccio, considered two of the greatest Italian writers of all time, as well as the great poet Dante Alighieri, who wrote the Divine Commedy in the Florentine Dialect.
Getting to Florence
The city is served by two motorways, A1 Autostrada del Sole, direct connection with the nord (Bologna node), to the south of Tuscany and Rome, and A11, Firenze-Mare, connection with the Tuscan cities of Prato, Lucca, Pisa, Viareggio and the cost of Versilia. Trenitalia is the railway operator in Florence. The city has two main stations, as well as the TAV Firenze Belfiore station. Among the available train lines there are Bologna-Firenze (high speed) and Firenze-Roma (direct). The city of Florence is served by Amerigo Vespucci Airport, in the Peretola district, which offers national and European connections using mainly national companies, and it is well linked to the city centre. There are more links with the major port of Tuscany, Galileo Galilei Airport in Pisa.