10-14 June, 2015
I don’t even know where to begin with Florence because it was probably one of the best (and most beautiful) weekends of my life! We stayed in an airbnb (our new favorite thing) that was right on the River Arno and Ponte Vecchio – honestly the greatest location for exploring the city. We walked absolutely EVERYWHERE and with the warm weather I wasn’t even complaining (except during the spontaneous downpour)!
After an outdoor breakfast at Café Rivoire, we spent most of our first day inside, visiting both the Uffizi and Academia Galleries. I hate people who take pictures in museums but I became one of those people because everything was so incredible and I want to remember it all forever. And the statue of David just doesn’t seem real, even up close.
To make up for the time we spent indoors, we opted for a long walk in the evening – perhaps too long, and too uphill, but lovely nonetheless. We explored an old fort and watched the sunset at Piazzale de Michelangelo before heading back towards our flat for dinner. I remember going home after dinner, taking a cold shower to try to get some of the sweat off me, and then just passing out from such an exhausting day. Not before enjoying our river view, though!
[The sunset over Florence, from Piazzale de Michelangelo] [We explored an old fort that led us to an odd art exhibition and an incredible view of Florence] [Our little window onto the river all lit up at night]
Our second day (our actual anniversary) was the most perfect out of all of them. We spent it with gorgeous surroundings, excellent wine, and some of the most delicious food I’ve ever had. Seriously, I’m starting to turn into the biggest fan of organized tours because of my two most recent experiences (Munich’s castle tour and now Florence’s wine tour). A full post will follow on the wine tour because I can’t fit it all in here!
After the tour, we went back toward the apartment and picked up pizza from Gusta Pizza, which our tour guide recommended. They had house wine for sale so we got a bottle to take back with us, opened up the window, and sat there staring at the view and allowing all of the mosquitos to come in. I know I mention this view and this window a lot, but that’s how great it is!
On Saturday, our last full day, had a nice long breakfast (late too – we really slept in), went to the Central market, and browsed the gold shops on Ponte Vecchio. Our most cultural experience was that night, when we went to Calcio Storico, the historical soccer match. This will also get its own post because I’m still trying to understand exactly what was happening. This match exemplifies one of my favorite thing about airbnbs – you get a real person who gives you phenomenal and personally recommended recommendations, allowing you to find out about things you never would have otherwise.
We let Saturday night be our official date night, with a fancy dinner of three courses, a phenomenal bottle of wine, and tiramisu to top it all off. We went to a restaurant down the street and I highly recommend it for anyone visiting Florence – the staff and food were both amazing!
[Date night at Osteria del Cinghiale Bianco with a great bottle of wine]
On our final day, we returned to Café Rivoire (Sean for some reason was obsessed with it) and made a few purchases back on Ponte Vecchio before heading to the airport. We made sure to make one final stop for gelato, though, at Gelateria dei Neri, which is apparently the best in Florence. It was definitely the best of our trip, and I ate a lot of gelato, so I don’t doubt it!
It was honestly such a great extended weekend, especially for the occasion given the romantic atmosphere of Tuscany. I’m already planning the next trip to Italy – just don’t tell Sean as I’ve been banned from planning more travel…. 😉