Free Museums, Tours & Shows in May

The interior of the Church of Santa Maria Novella

Free Sundays at State-Run Museums, May 7

On the first Sunday of each month, entrance to state-run museums of Florence will be free for all. Museums include: Uffizi Gallery (8:15 am – 6:30 pm); Palazzo Pitti complex (8:15 am – 6:50 pm); Boboli Gardens (8:15 am – 6:30 pm); Galleria dell’Accademia (8:15 am – 6:50 pm); Bargello Museum (8:15 am – 1:50 pm); and the National Archaeological Museum of Florence (8:30 am – 2.00 pm).

Domenica Metropolitana, May 7

On Sunday May 7, residents of Florence can enjoy visits to a number of city-run museums as well as exhibitions in venues around the city for free, but must bring proof of local address.

Museums participating in the initiative:

Palazzo Vecchio (9 am – 7 pm); the Arnolfo Tower of Palazzo Vecchio (9 am – 5 pm); the Masaccio, Masolino and Filippino Lippi frescoes in the Brancacci Chapel (1 pm – 5 pm, reservation required); the Museo Novecento of 20th and 21st Century Art (11 am – 8 pm); the Bardini Museum (11 am – 5 pm); the Salvatore Romano Antiquities Foundation (1 pm – 5 pm); Museo del Ciclismo Gino Bartali (10 am – 4 pm); Santa Maria Novella (1 pm – 5:30 pm, access via Piazza Stazione 4) and Palazzo Medici Riccardi (9 am – 7 pm).

Exhibitions free of charge for residents of Florence:

Y.Z.Kami: Light, Gaze, Presence

Iranian-American, Y.Z.Kami, explores the flux between external appearance and inner experiences in his introspective exhibition at Museo Novecento, ‘Light, Gaze, Presence’. Exploring themes such as individuality, universality and the intersection between them, Kami’s large-scale paintings of men and women in close-up encounters are inspired by photographs of his own family and friends, and encourage contemplation in their viewers. His 24 paintings are exhibited across the city; whilst the majority are displayed in Museo Novecento, a selection can be found in Museo di Palazzo Vecchio, Museo degli Innocenti, and San Miniato al Monte.

Lucio Fontana: L’Origine du Monde

L’Origine du Monde is another exhibition at Museo Novecento, displaying the lesser-known works by Lucio Fontana. From elegant ball-point pen sketches to clusters of concrete sculptures, this exhibition explores and offers artistic interpretations of the infiniteness of the cosmos.

Luca Giordano: Baroque Master in Florence

The masterpieces of the Baroque painter and printmake, Luca Giordano (1634 – 1705), are currently on display at Palazzo Medici Riccardi. A trail-blazer of his time, Giordano exploded conventional interpretations of classical themes and set to work with unparalleled creative vigour and vision. Giordano was prolific. This exhibition displays almost 50 of his paintings, all of which illustrate his extraordinary ability to evoke emotion and articulate reality with the brush. He was extensively commissioned by numerous wealthy Florentine families, including the Medicis, and these contacts propelled him on to the international stage. He later established himself as the court painter in Spain, one of the most powerful monarchies in the world at the time.

Free tours for residents of Florence (reservations required):


‘Secret routes’

For: children/adults

Times: 10 am, 11:30 am, 2:30 pm, 4 pm

Duration: 1 hr 15 mins

Visit secret locations and artefacts in Florence, including the staircase hidden in the wall, built at the request of Gualtieri di Brienne; the writing desks of Francesco I de Medici, a casket full of ‘rare and precious things’ and of his father, Cosimo I; as well as the imposing structure that supports the coffered ceiling of the Salone dei Cinquecento.

‘Visit to the Palazzo’

For: young people/adults

Times: 10:30 am, 3 pm, 4:30 pm

Duration: 1hr 15 mins

Palazzo Vecchio is the heart of Florence. Initially built to house the medieval rulers of Florence in 1299, the palace later experienced a golden age when the Medici family moved in, transforming it into a real palace. The visit allows you to gain a better understanding of how the architecture, arts, sculptures and paintings of the palace intersect and come together to symbolise the rich history of Florence.

‘Court Life’

For: families with children aged 6 to 10

Time: 11:30 am

Duration: 1hr

Today, Palazzo Vecchio is a museum, but in the 16th-century, it was home to Duke Cosimo de’ Medici and his wife Eleanora de Toledo and their eleven-year-old son. Strolling the halls of the museum, visitors will be able to appreciate not only the splendour of the architecture and the palace’s interior, but also to imagine the sumptuous banquets that would have taken place in the great hall, and the terrace that would have spilled over with flowers.


‘Visit to Lucio Fontana exhibition: L’Origine du Monde

For: young people and adults

Times: 11:30 pm, 12:30 pm

Duration: 1hr

Moving beyond the works on display, visitors will have the opportunity to explore the poetics and artwork of one of the greatest artists of the twentieth century, Lucio Fontana, whose works serve as a toolkit for exploring and interrogating the ongoing dialogue between earth and cosmos, man and nature, matter and form.

‘Visit to Luca Giordano exhibition, Baroque master of Florence’

For: young people/adults

Time: 3 pm

Duration: 1hr

Considered one of the greatest painters of the Baroque era, Luca Giordano (1634 – 1705) left a very significant mark on Italian and European art history. Visitors to the exhibition will be able to examine his legacy and the influential relationships he held with leading families in Florence at the time.


‘Visit to Santa Maria complex’

For: young people/adults

Time: 2 pm

Duration: 1hr 15 mins

On this tour, visitors will be invited to focus primarily on the Dominican order, the theology of which informs the architectural and artistic history of the convent. Visitors will get the chance to view major masterpieces of the complex, including those of Giotto, Masaccio and Brunelleschi, and better understand their historical relevance.


‘Visit to the Brancacci Chapel’

For: young people/adults

Times: 1:30 pm, 2:30 pm, 3:30 pm

Duration: 1hr 15 mins

Visitors will get the chance to climb the scaffolding on their own and examine the frescoes of the Brancacci Chapel up close, whilst gaining a better appreciation of the history and iconography of the cycle of frescoes.  (sophie holloway/with addition reporting by emma van zuthem)


Until Saturday 9.30-1 pm and 2 -17.00 ATTENTION: the service is not active on Sunday mornings. Tel. +39 055 2768224 / Mail