Florence, Italy is a work of art.
Considered the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance, artists such as Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and Botticelli decorated it's squares and museums with their great masterpieces. Thought to be Italy's most beautiful city, it is easy to understand why once you have strolled through it's streets and alleyways only to come upon an open square filled with statues and churches, cafés and stunning architecture.
It's turbulent past saw the Medici Dynasty rise and fall, a monk burned at the stake and a brief stint as Italy's capital until it finally settled as the country's most visited city.
We spent far longer than we expected in Florence and soon found ourselves relaxing into a pace of drinking coffee, examining architecture and enjoying the view.
It is worth the climb up to Michelangelo Park in Florence to snap a travel photo of the city at sunset. It is considered the best place for sunset over Florence and we agree.
You have to wake up bright and early to capture a photograph of the Duomo without people. We were out on the street at 5:00 am and the crowds were already forming and the street sweepers were out in full force.
We took a walking tour of Florence with Walks of Italy to capture this photo of the interior of the Church of Santi Apostoli. If you wait long enough, you will find a serene moment of silence to take in the perfect photo of a Florence Church.
Ponte Vecchio is the star attraction in Florence aside from David. Unlike many other bridges in Europe, the Ponte Vecchio Bridge was not destroyed during WWII. It is said that Hitler himself put an order out not to destroy this bridge. This may or may not be true, but one thing is for certain, it makes for a beautiful travel photo.
Outdoor masterpieces can be found everywhere in Florence but the Loggia dei Lanzi takes it to another level. It's a beautiful open air art gallery housing various impressive statues.
We had the good fortune of staying right in the heart of Florence. This lively square had an open air market where you could by meats and cheeses, bottles of wine and pre-made meals. The church of Santa Maria stands at the head of the square this is a photograph taken from our hotel. Definitely a room with a view.
You can get lost walking through the streets of Florence, but that is a good thing. Getting lost allows you to stumble upon a gelateria or an Osteria. You may find an art gallery in the quietest of places or simply enjoy the daily life of the Florentines. No doubt about it though, you will see many an Italian flag hanging on a storefront window or peeking through a private home.
The Duomo aka Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore is the centerpiece of Florence. At 453 steps high, it is an imposing structure standing over the city. Completed in 1436, it was the world's largest at the time. To this day it remains the largest dome made of bricks.
Florence is a travel photographers dream and one could get lost for days exploring its beauty and enjoying its history. Our travels to Florence only barely scratched the surface of this thriving Italian, city.