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Florence – Day 1

On the third day of our Italy trip we took a train from Venice to Florence. For some reason I was so excited about Florence, more so than Venice, from the beginning. As we did in Venice, we rented an apartment on Airbnb in Florence. After we got off the train, we found a bus going in the direction of the apartment we rented. It was quite easy to find the location, but the weather was extremely hot. When we arrived the apartment we needed to spend some time by the air conditioner before we went out again.

After we cooled down a bit, we went out again and took a walk to the city center. One of the things that got our attention first was some interesting traffic signs. These signs are made by French artist Clet Abraham. He got a few penalties since he did them without permission, but apparently he didn’t care about it at all. Since the people of Florence found these signs so interesting and fun, they let them stay like that.

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Florence is not an extremely huge city and our apartment was not very far from the center, so we could just walk everywhere. The first square we arrived at the center was Piazza Della Repubblica. The arch on the west side of the square was built when the city was a part of Kingdom of Italy (1865-1871). This square is in one of the oldest settlement parts of the city.

We walked a bit more and reached Piazza Duomo. We left visiting the Duomo until tomorrow and continued to walk to Galleria Dell’Accademia.

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Everybody may not know the name of Galleria Dell’Accademia, but it rings a bell when it’s said “the museum where David is”. This art gallery has hosted Michelangelo’s famous work David (1501-1504) since 1873. This 5.14m tall monument became one of the most significant art symbols in the 20th century. It was an amazing experience to be close to it and see every detail of it. It looked like a miracle to get such a perfect piece out of marble.

Lorenzo Bartolini’s works were one of our favorites along with Michelangelo’s. Although the museum was very crowded, we managed to see all the pieces we thought were interesting. Then we kept walking in the city.

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The next stop was Piazza Della Signoria. This square is one of the most important squares in Florence since both Gallery Ufizzi and Vecchio Palace are here. Before we started our tour around the palace, we had a little rest on the stairs at the entrance and listened to the nice music that street musicians were performing.

Then we entered the huge gate of Palazzo Vecchio. At one side of the gate there was a replica of David (the real David had been standing here for over 400 years before it was placed in Accademia at 1910), and on the other side there was Bandinelli’s ‘Hercules and Cacus’.

We walked around in the palace, then a staff member led us to upstairs with a special tour they organize at sunset. It was possible to see Florence from 360 degrees. It was a wonderful sunset up there.

This is the big saloon (52m x 23m) on the first floor that was built in 1499. Its ceiling was amazing.

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After the palace we were very tired and hungry. We found a nice restaurant on a very alive street and ate some delicious pizzas. Barış and Nikola drank Italian beer, but we preferred red wine.

At the end of this amazing day experiencing the Renaissance, Jordanka and I wanted to take a ride on the carousel we passed by while we were in Piazza Della Repubblica. On the way back home we have already started to dream about moving to Florence. :)

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