Have you ever encountered something for the first time that felt so familiar? Like gave you all the good feelings for no reason at all? This is exactly how I felt when I arrived in Florence.
I'd taken a two-hour Megabus ride from Rome to Florence earlier that morning, overflowing with anticipation and excitement to explore my next destination. I'd been told that Florence and the entire Tuscany region were just exactly what I needed. I'd seen some photos and articles, all of which made the city look even more appeasing to my wanderlusting eye.
After arriving at the bus station, I spent several minutes searching for a taxi stand to no avail. I'm not sure if it was because I was in the wrong location or what, but I needed to get to my Airbnb soon to meet my host. So I decided to tackle the cobblestoned streets and walk there. And my oh my was that a trying experience.
As the springtime temperatures continued to rise, I would soon lose any anticipation that had been built up until that moment. Attempting to drag a 50 pound bag along cobblestone was just as difficult as it sounds. Add to that the growing number of tourists slowing me down and peddlers shouting to me to buy one of their random trinkets. Then, the wine bottle that my host in Positano gave me for my birthday slipped out of the bag I was holding and shattered on the ground, creating a sad red mosaic on the Firenze street. I kept pushing forward, however, and after many wrong turns and consultations with my Here app, I finally arrived at my Airbnb.
After climbing what felt like a hundred flights of stairs, my host buzzed me in to the place and showed me to my room. Here's a quick tour of the digs.
After taking some time to handle logistics with my host and freshen up, it was finally time to explore Firenze! First stop: a delicious and hearty lunch at Osteria Ganino.
Next, I set out for the Florence Duomo Cathedral. This 13th century cathedral reaches over 300 feet and is one of many UNESCO Word Heritage Sites. I was blown away by its vibrant and impressive façade.
Several photos and videos later, it was time for my daily gelato treat, so I visited the Gelateria Edoardo to enjoy a homemade cone and organic gelato.
While indulging in my delicious treat, I wandered towards the Piazza della Signoria where I stopped by the Palazzo Vecchio. Serving as the city's town hall, this museum contains three courtyards, a mezzanine, and various other historical rooms to visit. After observing the first courtyard for a bit, I went to purchase a ticket to the Torre d'Arnolfo to get panoramic views of Florence. In true Italian fashion, I climbed several flights of stairs to the top of the tower. The added charm of the sunset made my trek that much more worth it.
It had been a long and rewarding day. After roaming around the streets and corridors of the city for a little while longer, I made it back to my home to prepare for the jam-packed day ahead of me.
Have you had the chance to explore the beautiful Florence and/or Tuscany region yet? What were some of your favorite highlights? Comment below!