Florence: the most authentic Italian experience.
My time in Florence has come to end, but my experience here is not over. I will definitely be coming back and visiting this magical city and the groups of friends that I have loyally made here.
Florence at your feet
Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore “Duomo”
Most Florentines I met haven’t been up the Cupola of the cathedral. A few days before I was due to leave, I hadn’t either. Well, I did once when I was 17, but I had to do it again and I dragged my mother with me also. An hour or two later, we climbed just under 500 steps, up the narrow and winding staircases and onto the small and tight terrace of the cupola, the largest in the world constructed by Filippo Brunelleschi. What a spectacular view.
Basilica di Santa Croce
This Gothic style basilica, the largest in the world, is most famous as the resting place of Michelangelo, Rossini, Machiavelli, Galilei and a memorial to Dante. The stunning blue, white and pink marble was shining in the sunlight, still visible behind the grand stand of the seats for the Calcio Storico. The hand painted dome depicting “The Final Judgment” is the most stunning feature of the church as well as the incredible frescos, inspired by the Sistine Chapel, painted by Giorgio Vasari in 1572.
The 24th of June is considered a holiday in Florence, as the city celebrates their patron, Saint John the Baptist. The day of events, including the Calcio Storico concludes with fireworks over the city by Piazzale Michelangelo. We went for drinks at Sesto on Arno on the top floor of the Westin Excelsior hotel, to watch the display with cocktails.
Last drinks with these two ladies was at Rivalta café. A great place to people watch and watch the sunset over the Arno River. They have a big cocktail menu also, a food buffet for aperitivo and a live DJ on some occasions.
My last dinner in Florence was at the same restaurant, where I had my first dinner, Buca Lapi. Absolutely unintentionally, we ended up going there as we knew the food and service was excellent. Emotions were running through me, thinking over the past couple of months and feeling content to go back to London and sad to leave my friends and the life I created in Italy. Oh the thrills of living abroad! More of a “see you soon” was said as I bid farewell to my friends and my city.
A final stroll under the night sky to soak the Italian lifestyle in and the gorgeous city itself. Until next time Firenze.
My #AnAffairWithItaly journey has not concluded and there is all the south of Italy still to explore… Watch this space! A presto Italia!