11 Best Things to do in Florence [2023]: Explore hidden gems!

Updated on:  
January 4, 2023
Reading Time:  
Jessica Bergin
Planning a trip to Florence soon and don't know where to visit? Well, we've done the work for you :) Check out the top 11 hidden gems you should definitely visit!

Heading to Italy, the land of pizza, pasta, and gelato? Florence is a must-see! Keep reading to find out what this mouthwatering city has to offer.

Home to bewildering architecture, long-standing monuments, a rich history, and some of the world’s most mouth-watering cuisine, Florence is a city that truly has it all. Tucked in the heart of Italy, Florence houses many marvelous opportunities for foodies, art lovers, and culture-intrigued visitors alike. 

Coined as the capital of Tuscany, there’s no doubt Florence hones in on a hefty amount of tourist attractions. From prancing around the Uffizi Gallery and devouring a delicious plate of pasta, to standing gobsmacked in front of the Florence Cathedral, it’s far too easy to get lost in the magic of it all. 

Attraction in Florence Italy
Image Courtesy: Jonathan Körner

11 Must-see Attractions in Florence

With so much to do, the only problem is figuring out where to start. If you’re wondering what to see in Florence, then you’ve landed on the right page! Here are the top things to do in Florence, Italy for 2022. 

11. Hit the clubbing scene  

If you’re wondering if Florence has a decent nightlife scene, then this will answer all your questions. Although the city is known for its remarkable architecture and gorgeous galleries, Florence also promises a night out you won’t forget! 

With chill lounges, pumping underground clubs, and luxurious nightlife aplenty, Florence offers some seriously spectacular options. Whether you want to indulge in a few beverages on a rooftop bar, or you want to get a little rowdy on the town, check out our insider’s guide on the Best Clubs in Florence

10. Have a picnic in the Boboli Gardens

Get outside and soak up the Italian sun in the beautiful Boboli Gardens! This hot spot in Florence is the perfect place to hang out with friends in the summertime. Thanks to the renowned Medici family, the garden and outdoor museum features grottos, fountains, and ancient Renaissance statues.  

Pack up a picnic and a bottle of wine, and relax amongst the 16th-18th century sculptures. The Boboli Gardens is definitely worth it if you’re looking to get some fresh air and take a break from the bustling city life. 

9. Enjoy the sunset from Piazzale Michelangelo 

sunset in florence
Image Courtesy: Heidi Kaden on Unsplash

Hugging the Arno River, the Piazzale Michelangelo sits perched atop the hills of Florence. If you’re a fan of panoramic city views, then the Piazzale Michelangelo should be at the top of your list. 

Head here for sunset to catch the sky as it turns all shades of pink, yellow, and orange. Don’t forget to listen out for local buskers filling the night air with music. 

8. Marvel at the front façade of Palazzo Vecchio 

Constructed by the same masterminds behind the Duomo and the Church of the Santa Croce, the Palazzo Vecchio is a stellar thing to see in Florence. From the spectacular exterior to the intricate interior design, don’t miss the Hercules Room and the Room of Cybele. 

7. Explore the Bargello Museum 

Florence is simply teeming with incredible museums and the Bargello Museum is no exception.  Brimming with Renaissance sculptures and artwork aplenty, it’s an art lovers paradise.

Alongside the countless sculptures, this centuries-old complex houses a rich history sure to satisfy both art enthusiasts and history fanatics alike. Don’t miss the Bacchus by Michelangelo and David by Donatello. 

6. See the tombs in the Basilica of Santa Croce 

attraction in florence italy
Image Courtesy: Alex Azabache on Unsplash 

Compared to the colossal-sized Florence Cathedral, the Basilica of Santa Croce sits on the smaller end of the scale. With a wealth of green, red and pink marble panels and shiny white stone on the exterior, the inside houses something even more exciting. 

Centered in the Piazza di Santa Croce, the basilica is home to the tombs of world-renowned artists like Michelangelo and Galileo. If you’re a lover of the arts, you cannot miss this hot spot! 

5. Check out the shops in Ponte Vecchio 

florence sunset
Image Courtesy: Josh Hild on Unsplash

If you don’t know what to do in Florence, then Ponte Vecchio should be on your bucket list. Compared to the grandeur of the Duomo, this old, colorful bridge is relatively humble. 

Lain along the Arno River, the Vecchio Bridge features a series of shops that have been built into the sides of the bridge. You can pick up some divine art, Italian jewelry, and classic souvenirs to take home with you as a memory of your trip to Italy. 

4. Stroll the Medieval streets 

street in florence
Image Courtesy: Heidi Kaden on Unsplash

If you’re after something unique to do in Florence, then a walk through the centuries-old streets is just what you need. Get lost in the timeless ambience of the cobblestone streets and discover a fair few hidden gems on the journey. 

Highlights of the old city in Florence include Donatello’s studios, the Baptistery of San Giovanni, the Mercato Nuovo and the Palazzo Vecchio. 

To really make the most of all the fascinating facts of this city that’s steeped in intrigue and history it may be worth taking a guided tour!

3. Get a peek at the Statue of David 

statue of david in florence
Image Courtesy: Jianxiang Wu on Unsplash

If you’re wondering what the top things to do in Florence are, then perhaps an image of the famous David Statue surely comes to mind. 

Hidden in the Galleria dell’Accademia, also known as the Gallery of the Academy of Florence, you’ll find the world-famous Statue of David. Get a peek at the brilliant design and intricate details in person, and don’t miss out on the myriad Michelangelo pieces on display. 

2. Admire the Florence Cathedral 

As one of the world’s biggest and most beautiful cathedrals, this attraction in Florence is a must-see. The Florence Cathedral is also known as the Duomo. Nestled in the heart of the old city, this cathedral is a standout in the sprawling Medieval streets of Florence. 

Bask in the beauty of the white marble contrasted with the pink, red and green polychrome designs, and don’t forget to head up the stairs to the top of the dome. The Florence Cathedral is one of the top things to do if you’re interested in history, culture, and religion. 

Travel tip: Head out to the nearby Giotto’s Campanile and climb the steps to catch some killer views of the Duomo. 

1. Hit up The Uffizi Palace and Gallery 

Uffizi Palace and Gallery in florence
Image Courtesy: Matteo Lezzi

Situated just off the sprightly Piazza della Signoria, the Uffizi Palace and Gallery is undoubtedly Florence’s biggest and most popular attraction. If you’re on the hunt for bucket list-worthy things to do, then this complex is well worth your time. 

Built with marble, the building is home to an inner, column-lined courtyard that’s sure to knock your socks off. The museum boasts remarkable Renaissance works by Da Vinci, Botticelli, and Raphael amongst many other names. 

If you’re a fan of sightseeing, Renaissance art, and Florence in general, then the Uffizi Palace and Gallery is one of the best things to do. 

Why should you visit Florence? 

If you’re a lover of awe-worthy art, extensive history, teeming culture, Italian architecture, and of course, some of the world’s best food, then Florence is the city for you. Dreamy renaissance architecture and a sense of timelessness makes this city food for the soul.

Whether you’re traveling on a budget or you’ve got a few extra pennies to spare, Florence has a wonderful range of accommodation on offer. If you’re on the hunt for hidden gems and budget-friendly accommodation, then you’ll love our guide on the Best Hostels in Florence

Plan your Florence trip and start the countdown now!

Florence is a tourist hot spot so it’s worth taking a bit of time to plan ahead if you don’t want to be disappointed. There are so many ways to avoid queues and secure tickets before they sell out but keeping tabs on it all can be overwhelming. That’s where Pilot comes to the rescue! 

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Published on:  
September 13, 2022

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