Districts of Florence Italy


First time visitors to Florence Italy will wonder where to start.  For travelers, they will find that Florence is divided into 5 main districts and that most of the areas attractions are located in these Districts of Florence Italy.

Developed in 1812, the Florence district of Campo di Marte served as the training site for the Tuscan army after Napoleon invaded the country. Now known as “Quartiere 2,” the area boasts many historical buildings originating from the turn of the century. Nestled amongst the array of historical structures, modern buildings emerged beginning in the 1950s. Today, the area is known as the city’s sports center. The Artemio Franchi Stadium stands here and serves as home to the Fiorentina soccer team. The region additionally features numerous public sports facilities and swimming pools.

Districts of Florence, Italy

Commonly referred to as Centro Storico, the design of the Centre district closely follows the road system constructed centuries ago by the Romans. The many attractions in this part of the city include the array of Renaissance palaces that line the medieval streets. Centre is also the region of Florence where visitors have the chance to see the artwork of the masters. The Galleria dell’Accademia features many paintings but the most famous attraction here remains Michelangelo’s statue of David.

Gavinana lies on the left bank of the Arno River and borders the city of Bagno a Ripoli. The historic location dates back to the 10th century and stands between the heart of the city and the famous Chianti wine country. The area also harbors treasured Renaissance works of art. The Church of Santa Maria dates back to the 14th century and features an altarpiece designed and crafted by Giotto. Students regularly attend the significant Longhi Foundation, which offers instruction in art history.

The Santa Maria Novella district lies between the banks of the Arno River and the railway station. The location features some of the finest architecture in the city that includes elegant piazzas. Explore the many medieval streets; visit the Croce al Trebbio, a shrine constructed by a group of Dominican friars. Indulge in window-shopping on the Via Tomabuoni.

Santo Spirito Oltramo, commonly called Santo Spirito, spans from San Frediano to San Niccol. The Piazza Santo Spirito lies in the heart of the district, which harbors local history and artisan workshops. Here, guests also find traditional markets in the squares. Visit any of the many beautiful churches and museums. The various facilities offer a glimpse into costumes, modern art and even silverware over the centuries. Take a leisurely stroll through the Boboli Gardens while admiring the fountains, statues and colorful landscape that span over 53 square yards.


Santo Spirito District, Florence, Italy


Santo Spirito District of Florence, Italy is an enchanting town that faces the Basilica of the Holy Spirit. The center of the city often hosts art exhibitions and local musicians. Vibrant bars and nightlife can also be found in the center of the Santo Spirito District.

The city is famed for its Basilica of the Holy Spirit, which was created by artist Filippo Brunelleschi. The yellow ocher facade makes the Basilica hard to miss. The Basilica is known as one of the most beautiful Renaissance churches throughout all of Italy.

Palazzo Pitti Museum, Santo Spirito District of Florence, ItalyIn the southeastern end of the Santo Spirito District, visitors will find a few museums. The Palazzo Pitti Museum features mini exhibitions that are dedicated to famous Italian painters. Visitors can also gain admission to the Boboli Gardens and view all of the sculptures that surround the gardens. There are various pathways adorned with beautiful flowers at the Boboli Gardens.

There are a variety of great restaurants to be found in this district too. To enjoy flavorful pasta dishes in an outdoor setting, Borgo Antico is one place to try. Il Santo Bevitore is an excellent place to dine at for a classy lunch or dinner. The traditional Italian cuisine is on point at Il Santo Bevitore. For a unique ambiance, visitors can check out the Munaciello Pizza House. The restaurant is housed within an old monastery which is complete with an angel sculpture hanging from the wall.

For the best shopping in the Santo Spirito District of Florence, travelers only need to check out the street located behind the Basilica. The Via Santo Spirito street is filled with charming boutiques, designer stores and antique outlets. There are also beautiful buildings lined up and down the street. The buildings were created by the wealthiest families of Italy, so it is worth taking a few minutes to check out these treasures.

Visitors can also gain a better appreciation and understanding of Florentine royalty by visiting the Pitti Palace. During the 16th century, the palace served as the main residence for the Medici grand duke. Each room in the palace contains artwork created by Italy’s foremost painters, including Raphael, Caravaggio, Titan and Botticelli.

The city is also adorned with other religious structures that are worth a visit. The Brancacci Chapel contains frescoes created by Masaccio. Famous paintings such as “The Expulsion of Adam and Eve” can be found tucked away in this famous religious center.


Campo di Marte District, Florence, Italy


Campo di Marte District in Florence, Italy has one of the smaller train stations located in Florence. It can be found in a primarily residential area. There are a few local boutiques and cafes in the area, but nothing of distinction. However, it is also close to the Stadio Artemio Franchi. This is the home stadium of Florence’s soccer team, Fiorentina. If you want to catch a game, then you can easily buy tickets the day of the match. Florentines love soccer, but the home team is not that popular. Thus, there should be no crazy crowds or lines keeping you from getting inside the 4,000 seat stadium.

Campo di Marte District, Florence, ItalyThere is an English cemetery not far from Campo di Marte either. It features the tombs of several famous writers such as Elizabeth Barrett Browning. The cemetery is located on a hill in the middle of the busy intersection at the head of Borgo Pinti and Piazzale Donatello. You should head down this road next after exploring the cemetery.

Perhaps the most notable attraction near the Campo di Marte station is the Four Seasons Hotel on Borgo Pinti. This magnificent compound is also home to one of Florence’s best gardens. All you need to do is walk through the plush lobby. The grounds are spectacular, and perfect for a quiet day away from the city. Walk through the garden, and up a hill to see an unexpected view of the Duomo. If you are hungry, then grab lunch by the pool at the Four Season’s cafe. They have great food that will remind you of home. The hotel also has a great spa and outdoor bar. It is a great place to get away for the day even if just for a few hours.

Piazza Beccaria is also a great place to grab drinks at Kitsch 2, or watch a movie. This little square features quite a large arch called the Porta alla Croce. Connecting roads feature plenty of bars and high street shops to keep locals happy.

If you are visiting Florence for the first time and short on time, this is probably not a district that will interest you as it is far away from the main attractions. However, its local charm gives it a distinct lived in feeling. If you want to see how real Florentines interact and live, then head towards the Campo di Marte station. It is easily accessible by bus, bike, or a twenty minute walk from the Duomo.


Santa Maria Novella District, Florence, Italy

The Santa Maria Novella District, Florence, Italy is a historic area of the city. It is a square that contains beautiful gardens, ancient buildings and gorgeous fountains. The area is an amazing place to visit.

Santa Maria Novella is one of the popular churches in the city. Upon entering the church, you will view Masaccio’s Holy Trinity on the wall. The pillars in the church are magnificent, and the paintings on the wall are stunning. The church contains a crucifix hanging in the middle of the church. The alter is impressive, and the artwork is incredible.

Plaza and Church of Santa Maria Novella in Florence, ItalyThe church is also home to the Museum and Monumental Cloisters of Santa Maria Novella. You can where you can exquisite art and intriguing chapels. The architecture is fascinating, and the museum is interesting.

Located near the church is the Santa Maria Novella Pharmacy. When Dominican friars arrived in the Florence in 1221, they used medicinal herbs. Their products became well-known, so they opened the pharmacy. You can visit the museum and learn about the making of perfumes and other famous medicines. The products are now sold online, so people from all over the world can buy them. The building is gorgeous, and you can try the lotions, teas, soaps and potpourri.

While in the Santa Maria Novella district, you can also take a leisurely walk and marvel and the amazing buildings. The structures in the area are unique and fascinating, and the people are interesting.

While visiting the area, you will want to take advantages of the shopping opportunities. The square is home to some of the most stunning art shops in the city. The shops contain beautiful rugs, unique sculptures, exquisite paintings and numerous other types of furniture.

The Santa Maria Novella Hotel is a great place for you to stay. The views are incredible, and the rooms are spacious. On certain days, you can visit the roof top terrace that contains a swimming pool. Numerous attractions are within walking distance of the hotel.

The Santa Maria Novella district is one of the most fascinating areas of the city. You can just sit back and be amazed at the beauty of the region.


Gavinana District, Florence, Italy

Gavinana District, Florence, Italy is located on the left side of the River Arno. It is the the third district of the city. It finds it name from its main square, Piazza Gavinana. This is a highly residential area of Florence despite its proximity to the city center. There are many narrow and winding streets in this district due to the lack of businesses and commercial properties. Gavinana is also home to one of the oldest social centers in Italy. A large portion of Gavinana is walled off from the public as it belongs to private estates. It was substantially ruined in the famous flood in Florence in 1966. Many parks were created in this district due to the demolition of older structures.

Piazza Gavinana, Florence, ItalyNotable Landmarks in the Gavinana District

There are three bridges in this district: the Iron Bridge, Ponte Giovanni da Verrazzano, and Ponte Varlungo. They connect the left side of Florence with the more central districts of the city.

If you are interested in churches, then you must check out one of the more popular landmarks in this district. First, there is the l’Iglse da Santa Maria a Ricorboli. It was one of the oldest in the area dating from the 15th century until the current structure replaced in in the 1920′s.

If you love architecture, then you must check out the Villa Rusciano. It was created by Luca Pitti and Filippo Brunelleschi. Luca Pitti is a famous banker who was a beloved friend of the Medici family. However, his name is more commonly associated with the Pitti Palace which he had created to rival the family’s own palazzo. The Villa Rusciano is located in the hills surrounding the city, and it provides further support to Florence’s substantial power during the Renaissance.

Another notable villa in the Gavinana District is the Villa Tasso. It once belonged to Robert Longhi who was an avid collector of important Florentine art. If you love art, then see if you can arrange a tour of the building as it still hosts some fine examples of period art. The Villa Bandini is one of the oldest structures in the district. It has a lovely garden called the Cave of Bandino. It was copied after the famous grottos found in palaces of the Medici family, and the cave at the entrance of the Boboli gardens.


Centre District, Florence, Italy


If you are a visitor to Florence, Italy you must be certain to spend some time in the Centre District. Many of the city’s most impressive sights are here in the center of the city, and you won’t want to miss the opportunity to see them for yourself. Conveniently, the district is not very spread-out, so you can see several fantastic landmarks within just a few blocks of each other. If you have only a day to spend in Florence, this would be an excellent place to spend it since you will be able to see so much in such a short time.
The Duomo, Centre District, Florence, ItalyThe Cathedral, otherwise known as the Duomo, is found in the center of Florence, along with the baptistry. Its proper title in English is the Basilica of Saint Mary of the Flower, and the cathedral reflects that lovely name. Along with the richly ornamental doors and the finely sculptured marble walls, the cathedral boasts 44 gorgeous stained glass windows created in the 1300s and 1400s. Construction on the cathedral began more than seven centuries ago, and several noted artists and architects had a hand in the design of this beautiful building whose golden dome towers over central Florence.

The Cathedral Square, or Piazza del Duomo, also includes the beautiful spectacle of Giotto’s Bell Tower, a splendid example of Gothic architecture, and the Museum of the Works of the Cathedral, which houses magnificent works of art connected with the cathedral, including the handiwork of Michaelangelo and Donatello. With its rich history, this is a definite must-see for any art enthusiast.

Another impressive sight in this district of Florence is the Ponte Vecchio, which is the bridge that stands over the Arno River. In addition to its structural beauty, which dates back to medieval times, the bridge is notable because it is lined with shops. While many bridges of that time were similarly lined with shops, that is not the case for many bridges that stand today, so it’s especially fun to wander these stores and buy the art, jewelry and souvenirs that is sold inside of them.

If you are planning a visit to Florence and looking for accommodation in the Centre District or all over the city, check out Oh-Florence where you can find a huge selection of apartments to suit your every need. Clearly, this central portion of Florence has a great deal to offer any visitor with a deep and abiding interest in art, culture and history, and its magnificence is such that it is likely to foster such an appreciation in others as well.


Arno River, Florence, Italy


Running through the city of Florence, Italy, the Arno River is the second most important river in Tuscany. Starting in the Appenine Mountains and flowing into the Tyrrhenian Sea, there are many notable sites for travelers to explore in Florence along this river.
One of the most famous sites associated with the Arno River is the Ponte Vecchio, an arched stone bridge last rebuilt in 1345. Withstanding many floods over the years, the bridge was a popular vending place for all sorts of merchants in medieval times, but is currently a rich piece of history housing luxurious shops.


Arno River in Florence, Italy
Much of the city of Florence’s vibrant activity is along the Arno River. Cafes, restaurants and lodging are lined along parts of the river. Whether one gets fresh made gelato or a local Florence favorite, a T-bone steak over a bed of wilted arugula topped with fresh Parmesan cheese, dining by the river will be a spectacular highlight. Lodging possibilities are numerous on the Arno River allowing a traveler to enjoy gorgeous views.
Alongside the Arno is the Belvedere Fort. Built in the sixteenth century for the Grand Duke Ferdinando I de’ Medici, the fort now provides amazing views of Florence and houses artwork. Also located along or nearby the river are the Uffizi Museum that contains works by Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo, the palace of Padri delle Missioni and several historic churches, towers, museums and bridges.

A short walk away is the Piazza della Duomo, also known as Cathedral Square, and is the home to many tourist attractions in Florence and the location of the city’s most famous cathedral. Overlooking Florence, Michelangelo’s Square offers breathtaking views of the city and the Arno River, especially at sunset.
Another way to enjoy all the beautiful city of Florence has to offer, especially if time is short, is taking a river cruise. When the weather is warm, being kissed by the summer breeze aboard a romantic evening cruise along the Arno with the magnificent city in the background will be a delightful memory relived over and over for years to come.
The Arno River in and of itself is an attraction. Enjoy an indulgently relaxing walk alongside the river soaking in the beauty of Florence. The river is also a popular location for taking photographs.


Firenze Card, Florence, Italy

The Firenze Card gives holders admittance to key museums, villas and gardens of historical significance in Florence. Various agencies endorse the card. These include the Municipality of Florence, the Regional Direction of Cultural Heritage, the Ministry of Arts and Cultural Activities, the Chamber of Commerce of Florence, the Special Superintendence for Historical, Artistic and Ethnic – Anthropological Heritage, for the Museum Circuit of Florence, in partnership with ATAF.

Buying the Firenze cards has advantages. It can save visitors money and time, depending on the number of museums they plan to visit. Visitors who have paid ahead of time do not have to wait to get tickets, buy individual tickets or make reservations. Entrance to some monuments and museums listed on the pass is free. Visitors might want to determine the price of museum fees without having the Firenze card by looking at the Florence Museums Price website.Firenze Card, Florence, Italy

The Firenze card is valid for 72 hours. It gives free entrance to the primary museums in Florence to the holder of the card. It is legitimate to use for both permanent collections and other displays and activities of that museum with no other fees. The visitor presents the card at the museum entrance hall. The card may be used only one time at each museum. Each purchased card is usable for free admittance for one EU citizen who is under 18 and who is accompanied by an adult. The card can be used for public transportation by swiping through the validation machine found in trams and buses. A list of countries on the Firenze website lists the European countries that offer access for those under 18.

One piece of sound advice is for the holder to write his name on the card without delay when purchasing the card. At the museum, find the sign for the Firenze card and provide the card for admission. The card’s validity begins the first time the card is used.

The recent cost for the card is 50 Euros. Visitors can check the most up-to-date price on-line or at a tourist information center, museums or stores as indicated on outlet maps. If the card is bought online, verify the collection points for obtaining the card.

Those holding the Firenze card can visit all museums that are included in the Circuit within the Florence area. The Firenze website also has a list of events for which the card can be used.


Piazzale Michelangelo, Florence, Italy

The Piazzale Michelangelo (Michelangelo Square) provides travelers with the fullest, richest, panoramic view of Florence, Italy and its surrounding Tuscany hillsides. The square was built to honor great Renaissance artist Michelangelo. You can see replicas of some of Michelangelo’s most famous works in the piazzale, such as his statute of David, and the Medici funerary pieces of Dusk, Dawn, Day, and Night. However, you can see the originals at other locations in Florence. The real reason to visit the Piazzale Michelangelo is its magnificent views.View of Florence from Piazzale Michelangelo, Florence, Italy

The Piazzale Michelangelo was designed by Giuseppe Poggi and built in the late nineteenth century. It’s in the Oltarno district of the city, sitting on the left side of the Arno River. To get those great views, the piazzale was built on a natural terrace that has been done over in a neoclassical style.

You can easily reach the piazzale. Any tour bus trip you might take in Florence will definitely stop at the piazzale. You can also take public bus lines 12 or 13. These are really the same line, they just run in opposite directions. They’re circular routes with beautiful views of their own, so stick with the same line for your ride down so you can get the full experience.

If you prefer to walk, you can take the winding walk up the hill starting at the Piazza Poggi. You should note that there are some steep steps up to the piazzale at the end of the walk. If you’re still on the other side of the river, you can cross the Ponte Vecchio and continue on to the Piazza San Niccolo. There are some stone stairs from this piazza that will take you to the piazzale.

For the really ambitious, you can continue the walk up to a church, San Miniato al Monte, that sits right behind the piazzale and is less crowded. If you’ve gone to the piazzale to view a sunset, you might also hear the Benedictine monks at the church sing vespers in the late afternoon.

Despite the crowds at the main plaza of the piazzale, there are corners where you can find some space to yourself. There is a restaurant, which was supposed to have been a museum dedicated to Michelangelo, where you can enjoy a meal. If you want a more relaxing or romantic interlude, you can buy some food from one of the local carts and find a quiet spot for you and your partner.


Ponte Vecchio, Florence, Italy

The Ponte Vecchio is a medieval stone bridge that spans the narrowest point of the River Arno in Florence. It is located on the site of an ancient Roman bridge that enabled an important road, the “Via Cassia,” to cross the river. The first documented evidence of a bridge appears in 996. It was a wooden superstructure on stone piers. This bridge and a subsequent replacement were swept away by flood waters in 1177 and 1333. The bridge was rebuilt in 1345. The design, credited to Taddeo Gaddi, consists of segmented, closed-spandrel arches. There were towers situated on the four corners. Their role was to defend the bridge. Only one tower remains, situated on the southeast corner. The owners of this tower, the Torre dei Mannelli, refused to alter its design. This forced the Medici family to construct the elevated Vasari Corridor around it on brackets. The tower was damaged during the Second World War and restored in 1946 by Nello Baroni. The Ponte Vecchio was the only bridge across the River Arno that was not destroyed by retreating German forces. Historians believe that Hitler, who visited the bridge in 1939, gave the order to allow the bridge to remain intact.Ponte Vechio, Florence, Italy

The bridge is noted for the shops that line its path. The lord mayor authorized merchants to exhibit their products on tables in front of their businesses. There are unverified stories that the concept of bankruptcy originated on this bridge. When a merchant couldn’t afford to remain in business, soldiers broke his table or “”bancorotto.” This action prevented the merchant from selling his goods and forced him out of business. In the early days, the shops were predominantly butchers. When the Vasari Corridor was constructed, city officials removed these businesses in 1564 to prevent their odors from entering the passageway. Goldsmiths took their places. Today, most of the businesses that line the bridge are art dealers, curio shops and descendents of the original goldsmiths.

Ponte Vecchio and its statuary are the focal point of a recent tradition in which an individual attaches a padlock along the bridge or the Benvenuto Cellini statue. This is a symbolic gesture that the person who closes the lock and tosses the key into the river is forever bonded to his true love or to the city of Florence.