Florence Destination Guide

Florence, the capital of Tuscany in Italy, is a city steeped in history, art, and culture. Its picturesque landscapes, magnificent architecture, and world-renowned museums attract millions of tourists each year. But where should you begin your adventure in Florence?

In this destination guide, we’ve rounded up everything you need to know about this beautiful Tuscan city. From must-see attractions and food recommendations to hidden gems and local neighbourhoods, Italy on a Budget has you covered for an unforgettable trip to Florence.

Exploring this city on a budget is entirely possible, especially with Italy on a Budget tours in and from Florence.

Our budget-friendly activities and tips will ensure you have a great time, without worrying about your bank balance. Just get in touch to find out more!

So, let’s delve into all the activities that make Florence a dream destination!

Historical and Cultural Marvels

It’s no secret that Florence is full of iconic historical and cultural monuments, museums, and more.
Here is a selection of the city’s most-visited destinations for you to make your own checklist.

Florence Cathedral (Duomo di Firenze)

The iconic dome of Florence Cathedral dominates the city’s skyline. This masterpiece, designed by Brunelleschi, symbolizes the Renaissance era and offers breathtaking views of the city from its top.

Uffizi Gallery, Florence

One of the world’s most renowned art museums, the Uffizi Gallery houses an impressive collection of Renaissance masterpieces.

Be prepared to encounter works by Botticelli, Michelangelo, Gentileschi, Leonardo da Vinci, and other artistic giants.

Tour the Uffizi Gallery with us and skip the line! Your dedicated tour guide will take you around the gallery, offering detailed information about the iconic works on display.

Galleria dell’Accademia, Florence

Home to Michelangelo’s David, visiting the Galleria dell’Accademia is a must for art enthusiasts. Besides David, the museum features other important works by the great sculptor. A tour with Italy on a Budget includes a tour guide and line skipping!

Palazzo Vecchio, Florence

This grand medieval palace, located in Piazza della Signoria, was once the seat of the Florentine government. Today, visitors can explore its opulent rooms and admire the beautiful frescoes.

Ponte Vecchio, Florence’s Famous Bridge

Florence’s most famous bridge, Ponte Vecchio, spans the Arno River and is known for its unique shops and goldsmiths that line the bridge.

Hidden Gems and Charming Neighborhoods

If you have time on your trip to Florence, take a moment to walk around the city’s many neighbourhoods.
What hidden gems will you discover?


Cross the Ponte Vecchio to reach the Oltrarno neighbourhood, a bohemian enclave with narrow streets, artisan workshops, and local trattorias. Don’t miss the Pitti Palace and Boboli Gardens.

San Lorenzo Market

A vibrant market where you can find leather goods, souvenirs, and local produce. It’s a great place to mingle with locals and taste authentic Florentine delicacies.

Piazzale Michelangelo

For the best panoramic views of Florence, head up to Piazzale Michelangelo at sunset. Bring a camera and capture the city’s beauty as it glows in the evening light.

Santa Croce

This district is home to the stunning Basilica of Santa Croce, the final resting place of illustrious figures like Michelangelo, Galileo, and Machiavelli.

Indulging in Tuscan Cuisine

As you travel across Italy, you’ll discover that each region has its own signature dishes. From different types of pasta and bread, your mouth will be watering at this list of Florence’s custom meals!

Pappa al Pomodoro

A classic Tuscan tomato and bread soup, perfect for savouring the flavours of ripe tomatoes and Tuscan bread.

Pici Pasta

Pici pasta is local to Tuscany and looks like longer and thicker spaghetti. Always fresh and homemade, pici is often served with cacio e pepe (cheese, pepper, and pasta) or in pici con la nana (duck ragu).

Wild Boar

Wild boar meat is very popular in Tuscany, often used in ragu and a local favourite Pappardelle Cinghiale. The Tuscan wild boar, ‘cinghiale,’ serves as both a local emblem and a prized local delicacy.


Tuscany is known for its truffle production and you’ll find slices of them added to many dishes, giving an earthy, musky flavour. Tagliolini al Tartufo is a simple way to start sampling this delicious Tuscan delicacy.


At the centre of the aperitivo, you’ll find a tagliere. This meaty cold cuts platter often includes pecorino cheese, salami, ham, wild boar, finocchiona, lardo, cinta senese, and more! Perfect for snacking on as you hang out with friends.

Bistecca alla Fiorentina

This is the signature Florentine T-bone steak, grilled to perfection and seasoned simply with olive oil, salt, and pepper.


A hearty vegetable and bread soup, ideal for colder days and a delicious example of Tuscan comfort food.


Treat yourself to authentic Italian gelato from Gelateria Santa Trinita or Gelateria dei Neri for a sweet ending to your meal.

Events and Festivals

Florence is a lively city, full of cultural traditions and festivals. Depending on the time of year you visit, you may be able to catch some of these events in action!
There are almost monthly festivals throughout the year, but here are a few to get you started.

Scoppio del Carro

Witness an ancient Easter tradition in Florence where a beautifully decorated cart filled with fireworks is ignited in front of the Cathedral.

Calcio Storico

This historic football match takes place in Piazza Santa Croce every June, combining elements of soccer, rugby, and wrestling, and providing an intense spectacle.

Estate Fiesolana

During the summer months, enjoy concerts, theatre performances, and film screenings in the Roman amphitheatre of Fiesole, just outside Florence.

La Festa delle Rificolone (Festival of the Paper Lanterns)

This district is home to the stunning Basilica of Santa Croce, the final resting place of illustrious figures like Michelangelo, Galileo, and Machiavelli.

Practical Tips for Your Florence Visit

Skip the Lines

Florence is a popular city throughout the year, so we recommend booking tickets in advance for attractions like the Uffizi Gallery and Galleria dell’Accademia to avoid long lines.

Respect Local Customs

When visiting churches and religious sites, dress modestly, covering shoulders and knees. Take a scarf in your bag or wear longer clothing if you plan to visit any religious spots.


While we Italians are very friendly, a little Grazie goes a long way! Learn a few basic Italian phrases ahead of your visit; locals always appreciate visitors who make an effort to speak the language.

Getting Around Florence

Florence offers a convenient and efficient transport system that allows visitors to navigate the city and its surroundings with ease. Florence is a walkable city, but you can also use buses and trams if you’re heading to a specific place.


Florence is a compact city, making it highly walkable and ideal for exploring on foot. Most of the major attractions, historic sites, and neighbourhoods are within walking distance of each other, so you to immerse yourself in the city’s beauty at a leisurely pace.

Public Buses

The city’s extensive bus network connects various neighbourhoods and attractions. Tickets can be purchased at kiosks and are valid for 90 minutes, allowing transfers between buses within this time frame. You can also download the app TABNET to buy a digital ticket.


Florence has a modern tram system that connects the city centre with the surrounding areas. Trams are particularly useful for travelling between the main railway station, Santa Maria Novella, and neighbourhoods like Scandicci.

Tips and Tricks to Save Money in Florence

Florence, though a captivating city, can be a bit pricey for travellers. However, with some smart planning and budget-conscious choices, you can make the most of your experience without breaking the bank.

Free Attractions

Take advantage of the many free attractions the city has to offer. Marvel at the exterior of Florence Cathedral, stroll through the beautiful Piazzale Michelangelo for panoramic views, and visit the historic squares and markets like Piazza della Signoria and Mercato Centrale without spending a dime.

City Passes

Consider investing in city passes or tourist cards, like the Firenze Card, which grants you access to various museums and attractions. These cards often include skip-the-line privileges, saving you time and money on entrance fees.

Lunch Specials

Opt for the “menu del giorno” or lunch specials offered by many trattorias and restaurants. These fixed-price menus typically include a full meal at a more affordable rate than dinner options.

Aperitivo Culture

Embrace the Italian tradition of aperitivo, where you can enjoy a pre-dinner drink and indulge in a selection of complimentary snacks. Many bars offer aperitivo specials, making it an economical way to experience local nightlife.

Discover a taste of aperitivo culture, or Italian happy hour, on our Ultimate Florence by Night tour. Our two-hour tour will ground you in this delicious and daily cultural experience as well as give you a walking tour of the city centre.

Accommodation Choices

Consider staying in budget-friendly accommodations like hostels or guesthouses. Booking in advance and comparing prices on different platforms can help you find the best deals — especially during the low season.

High and Low Season in Florence

The high season in Florence runs from April to October, attracting crowds with nice weather and outdoor events.

Tourists flock to iconic attractions, leading to longer lines and higher accommodation prices. But, if you enjoy the bustle of crowds, the atmosphere is great!

The low season, from November to March, offers a quieter experience, with fewer visitors and more affordable rates.

While the weather may be cooler, cultural offerings, museums, and historical landmarks remain captivating. It’s a perfect time for a more relaxed visit.

Florence is a city that immerses you in art, history, and culture at every turn. From the breathtaking masterpieces to the charming neighbourhoods and delectable cuisine, it promises an enriching experience for every traveller.

Whether you’re an art aficionado, a history enthusiast, or a food lover, Florence will captivate you and leave you with cherished memories for a lifetime! If you’re ready to visit, take a look at our Italy on a Budget tours in and from Florence, or get in touch with our local team!