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The hidden gems of Florence

It’s time to lose the crowds and experience the beauty of Florence on your own terms.

Inferno, in cinemas October 14th, finds the famous symbologist Robert Langdon on a trail of clues to the great Dante himself. When Langdon wakes up in an Italian hospital with amnesia, he teams up with Sienna Brooks, a doctor he hopes will help him recover his memories.  Together, they race across Europe and against the clock to foil a deadly global plot. His journey takes him to the streets of Florence…

Known for its world-class architecture and iconic history, the great Tuscan capital of Florence is one of the true jewels of an already sparkling Italy. If you’re hoping to avoid the crowds when you visit, we’ve pulled together our list of the very best hidden gems around the city

Wander the delights of the Bardini Gardens

Wander the delights of the Bardini Gardens

If you’re looking for the ultimate in peaceful escapes, look no further than the Bardini Gardens. Tucked away just past the more well-known Boboli Gardens, you’ll be well rewarded for exploring that little bit further.

Renaissance in design and intimate in feel, the Bardini gardens are beautifully tranquil and offer the perfect spot to relax under the Tuscan sun.

Check out the weird and wonderful at La Specola

Check out the weird and wonderful at La Specola

For fans of the macabre, head straight to the delights of La Specola museum. A kooky museum of 18th century natural history, La Specola is filled to the rafters with taxidermy animals and waxwork figurines; all considered curiosities of nature 300 years previously.

The oldest scientific museum in Europe, the waxwork figures here were once used to teach medicine, whilst the exotic stuffed animals aimed to fascinate and intrigue. This museum is certainly one of a kind!

Feast on a lampredotto sandwich

Feast on a lampredotto sandwich

Forget pizza and pasta (although don’t, because they’re still delicious); each region of Italy is home to its very own cuisine. One of the traditional dishes of Florence is the lampredotto, and no trip to the city is complete without giving it a try.

Although the dish is made from cow’s stomach, there’s no denying that it’s delicious! Cooked in a broth with herbs and tomatoes, thinly sliced and then placed into a bun, this sandwich is a staple of Florence and has been around for centuries.

Stroll from the Ponte Vecchio to San Miniato al Monte

Stroll from the Ponte Vecchio to San Miniato al Monte

There’s no better time to get out into the fresh air than on the beautiful streets of Florence. Begin your walk at the Ponte Vecchio and wander along to Santa Felicita, a church filled with 16th century Florentine paintings. On the left runs the Costa di San Giorgio, where Galileo once lived at number 9. The oldest surviving city gates, the Porta San Giorgio stand at the end of the road.

It’s a steep and crowded climb to the Piazzale Michelangelo, but carrying onto the Basilica San Miniato al Monte gives stunning views over Florence. The classical façade of marble has looked down over the city since 1013.

Blogger recommendations

Blogger recommendations

If you’re looking to cool off in the Tuscan sun, our blogger chum Anita recommends her top gelato tips for Florence. ‘You can tell if it’s a good gelateria, if it’s stored in vats to keep it at the right temperature’ she says, and recommends heading straight to Riva Reno for their pistachio flavour. 

If you’re heading to Italy this summer, order your euros online from us. We offer our very best rates online, and you’ll be able to pick up from one of our Travelex stores or have your order delivered directly to your home.

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