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What to See in 72 hours in Florence

Have 72 hours in Florence and wondering what to see? Did you just buy the Firenze Card and want to get the most out it and see as much as possible?

If you're wondering how to organize your 3 days in Florence, we have a proposed itinerary below of what you can try to see in those 3 days.... obviously, if you have more time, you can see everything at a slower pace or even add more. Our suggested itinerary has a mixture of museums and time spent outdoors so you can enjoy Florence. You can, of course, also mix up the order of the days ;)

* the museums with the asterisk are included in the Firenze Card

Day 1 - Piazza della Signoria

Start your day in Piazza della Signoria.

In the morning, visit:

- the museum of Palazzo Vecchio * then head on to Via Calzaiuoli and visit

- the church of Orsanmichele * (free)

Continue along Via Calzaiuoli and arrive in Piazza del Duomo. Grab a gelato to enjoy along the way. I recommend one from Grom or Festival del Gelato or Perche no?. See a list of other great gelato places in Florence.

In Piazza del Duomo, you can visit the cathedral* and baptistery * (beautiful!). The cathedral is free, while the baptistery is 15 euro (you can buy a single pass for all of the monuments in Piazza del Duomo valid 48 hours on its own) and really worth it! If you have the energy, climb up the bell tower or all of the way up the dome* ;-)

Grab LUNCH in the area, you want to stay nearby to head back toward Piazza della Signoria in the afternoon.

In the afternoon, dedicate 2-3 hours to

- the Uffizi Gallery * Here's an idea of what to see within the Uffizi in those hours.

After you're done, head toward the Arno river and enjoy a view of

- Ponte Vecchio then head over and cross it!

You're done for the day, enjoy DINNER and Florence by night!

Day 2 - San Marco Area

Start your day at Piazza San Marco and visit

- the Accademia Gallery * to admire Michelangelo's David and more

Head out and just around the corner to visit the

- Opificio delle Pietre Dure museum * (don't know what it is? then you'll be very pleasantly surprised at this little treasure, not visited by many!)

Head back to Piazza San Marco and visit

- the San Marco museum * right next to the church - the frescoes by the Beato Angelico are worth it!

LUNCH break

In the afternoon, head toward San Lorenzo and visit:

- the Palazzo Medici Riccardi * and see the small chapel decorated by Benozzo Gozzoli*

Then head toward Piazza San Lorenzo, go around the church and visit

- the Medici Chapels * (see the work done by the Opificio delle Pietre Dure in action)

After the Medici chapels, take a break from museums - enjoy walking around the area, and in particular, exploring the San Lorenzo outdoor market behind Piazza San Lorenzo.

Once you're done with your shopping, one more "museum" for the day: enjoy the beautiful treasures within Santa Maria Novella church *, have DINNER and enjoy the evening out.

Day 3 - Oltrarno

Today you enjoy the Oltrarno area of Florence, on the left bank of the Arno.

Start by visiting the

- Brancacci Chapel * inside Santa Maria del Carmine and enjoy the frescoes by Masaccio: simply beautiful!

Afterward, head to the Pitti Palace and the Boboli Gardens * and decide how to spend the rest of the morning and afternoon....

The Pitti Palace has 5 museums within, plus the Boboli gardens behind: accept it, you CANNOT visit them all (unless you have more days in Florence - if you do, consider getting a multiple day ticket if you do not have the Firenze Card). Decide what you'd like to visit... maybe just spend time in the gardens after having been indoors and seen so much art the last 2 days!

If you'd like to visit the museums within the Pitti Palace, you can actually spend the rest of the day here. In that case, I recommend visiting the Palatine Gallery * or the Modern Art Gallery * in the morning, take a break for LUNCH, then return to visit the Boboli Gardens * and any of the other museums (Silver, Porcelain or Costume gallery) in the afternoon.

After you're done (phew!), head back toward Ponte Vecchio but before crossing it, turn right and follow Via dei Bardi to the San Niccolò area. You'll arrive at the San Miniato gate along the old section of the walls (one of the last remaining stretches of medieval wall remaining in Florence of the old city walls), cross under and climb up to

- Piazzale Michelangelo for the best view of Florence ever!!

Head back down to the San Niccolò area for dinner, there are several trattorie and restaurants here that deserve trying out!

Hope you'll enjoy your 3 days in Florence and, remember, remain flexible, see less if you need to, take your time and enjoy what you do see rather than just check things off a list. You will remember what you enjoyed and loved once you go back home ;-).

Author: Lourdes Flores

I'm from California but have called Florence my home for over a decade. I love to explore Italy; it is a lot of fun to try to see everything like I'm seeing it for the first time, keeping you, our readers, always in mind. I enjoy sharing what I know and helping others as they make their travel plans for Tuscany through our Forum. If you have itinerary-related questions, please post them there!


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