We arrived in Florence by train from Venice and managed to find our way to the AirBNB apartment we had near the central Florence Market with not too many problems. When we arrived they asked if we would mind if they gave us a larger 2 bedroomed apartment on the first floor across from the market. We didn’t mind at all! It was really nice and spacious and close to a number of nice restaurants around the market square, once of which was owned by the husband of the apartment owner and we had a nice 10% discount on all meals there – which was great.
The first afternoon in Florence we had a walk around the city, everything was really close and we ended up at the Duomo Cathedral which was really impressive – only just over a block away. It is just huge, and as you walk into the square it makes a huge impression. We also walked down to the Ponte Vecchio Bridge and had a look into all the expensive jewellery shops along the bridge.
We had a nice dinner at the Garabardi Trattoria (with a 10% discount) which was really great (pasta and pizza have been the standard fare while in Italy).
The next day we had bookings at the Accademia and the Uffizi Gallery which I had made before I left. The Accademia is where they have Michelangelo’s statue of David which he carved in Florence when he was in his early 20’s int he early 1500’s. It just takes your breath away when you walk into the room – it is just beautiful. Huge, over 5M high – much bigger than I expected – really something. After David we went along to the huge Uffizi Gallery which is a short walk away near the Arno river. Also beautiful with Bottechelli’s Birth of Venus and the only Michelangelo painting “The Holy Family” as well as a number of Leonardo Da Vinci paintings.
Our train to Rome was supposed to leave at about 4:30 and we were at the station in plenty of time to make the train only to see it delayed (initially by 10 minutes then 55 then 120 then 130 minutes!). Not much information available other than it was delayed and not many cool places to sit and wait! We eventually snuck into the Freccia Club which was nicely air-conditioned and not too crowded. Anyway we ended up arriving in Rome over 2 hours late at around 8:30.