Florence’s Empty Streets & Survival Guide

The effects of mass tourism on downtown Florence is especially evident in light of the COVID-19 lockdown: significantly fewer permanent residents also thanks to a predominance of private rentals, Airbnbs, residences and hotels. There are less residents out and about even doing grocery shopping in the historic center, those who do so are walking around, masked, for the most part before lunchtime.  Florentines are known to take their dogs out for a walk [...]

Valentine Week Food & Wine Specials at Pino’s

Salumeria Verdi, aka “Pino’s Sandwiches” on via Verdi 36 has three specials lined up for Valentine’s week.  Wednesday, February 12, is “Coccoli Day” from 5 – 8 pm, when Pino and his family will make Tuscan fried dough balls (coccoli) right on the spot, then fill them with Nutella and serve to guests (€1 for a large coccolo, €2 for an extra-large one). Friday, February 13 is “Galenwine Day” at Pino’s Enoteca DiVino (via Ghibellina [...]

Opera Duomo: Reduced Admission & Free Visits

In an initiative that has been extended through February 29, residents of Florence, the city’s metropolitan area and the province of Florence can participate in free guided visits on Saturdays (5 and 6 pm) and on Sundays (10, 11, 5 and 6 pm) of the South Gate of the Baptistery at the Opera del Duomo museum (Cathedral Museum) and also visit the entire complex at a reduced admission of €6 instead of €18. [...]

Red Cross of Florence Holiday Market 2019

The Red Cross of Florence will host a holiday market, whose proceeds will go to Florentine families in need at Palazzo Capponi (via Borgo San Frediano 12) on Sunday, Dec. 1 from 10:30 am – 6:30 pm. The CRI solidarity panettoni (Christmas bread) and various fine products will be for sale throughout the holiday market, which is being held in the same building where the local office of the volunteer organization is located [...]

Florence’s ‘Black Friday’ Discounts & Bus Strike

Black Friday–featuring discount shopping on the day after Thanksgiving–is the newest trend in Florence.  Although some shops mistakenly call it “Dark Friday” (see photo), the concept is the same:  price reductions from 10% to 50%.  The ground floor of Mercato Centrale in San Lorenzo will offer a 10% discount on vegetables and fruit, meat, fish, pasta, cheese, olive oil, wine and more.  The Rinascente department store will remain open until midnight on November [...]

The Feast of San Lorenzo on August 9-10

In Florence, August 10 is celebrated as the feast of San Lorenzo (St. Lawrence), which is a trademark of the characteristic neighborhood around the church of San Lorenzo near the Central Market. To kick-start the festivities, the square in front of the church will host a free concert by the Città di Grosseto Symphonic Orchestra on August 9 at 8:30 pm. The actual feast day, August 10, will start with a parade of [...]

Balagan Café Dreams of Florence in the Synagogue Garden

Balagan Cafe

BALAGAN CAFE. July 11 & 18, September 5 & 22. Free entrance. Synagogue of Florence, Via Luigi Farini 4. The Synagogue will opens its doors for each event at 7 pm, and at 7:30 pm €10 aperitivos are served. More information on the facebook page and website. Back for the seventh time, the program of this year’s Balagan Cafe consists of four evenings in the courtyard of the stunning historic Synagogue of Florence, [...]

Museum Extended Hours & Discounted Admission

To celebrate the cultural aspects of the EU, the third Saturday in May is designated European Museum Night (Notte dei Musei), offering dinnertime visiting hours and discounted admission. This year, the following sites can be visited for €1 on May 18 during the following hours: Uffizi Gallery: 7 – 10 pm. Bargello: 7 – 10 pm. Accademia: 7 – 10 pm. Innocenti Museum:  7:30 – 9:30 pm. San Marco:  7 – 10 pm. [...]

New, Discounted Admission to the Innocenti Museum

Starting in April 2019, visitors of the Accademia Gallery will now have the opportunity to buy a discounted ticket to the Museum degli Innocenti (€5 reduced from €7, valid for six days from purchasing admission to Accademia Gallery). The two institutions are collaborating as part of a three-year agreement in an effort to promote their cultural and artistic heritage in the historic centre of Florence, which is where both of the museums are [...]

Da Vinci’s ‘Codex Atlanticus’ Displayed at Palazzo Vecchio

Until June 24: “The Codex Atlanticus.”  Sala dei Gigli, Palazzo Vecchio.  Open 9 am – 7 pm until March 31; 9 am – 11 pm daily except Thursday when hours are 9 am – 2 pm from April 1 – June 24.  Entrance included in the ticket to Palazzo Vecchio, which has been temporarily increased to €16.50 for the duration of the show.  An exhibition dedicated to the Codex Atlanticus, specifically 12 sheets of [...]