Top 5 Best Views of Florence

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  8. Top 5 Best Views of Florence
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Florence is an extremely photogenic and beautiful place to visit, no matter where you go.  The narrow streets and the sea of red roof houses give it so much personality, and it is hard to mistaken it for any other place.  With that said, there are still some prime locations that allow you to capture the best of Florence.  Follow this guide to discover the top 5 best views that Florence has to offer.

1. Piazzale Michelangelo

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View of Florence from Piazzale Michelangelo

The view from Piazzale Michelangelo allows you to get a great view of Florence with the Arno river winding through and the mountain ranges in the background.  During sunset, a beautiful orange glow is cast onto the sides of the buildings, making for a really great view.

How to get here:

Piazzale Michelangelo is located a bit outside the main city center, and the easiest way to get there is by bus.  From the main train station Firenze Santa Maria Novella, you can take the number 12 or 13 bus, which is about a 25 min bus ride to the top of the hill where the plaza is.  You’ll know you’re there when you see large parking lot with a replica of the famous David statue in the center.

Cost:

Free!  If you’re taking transit, you just need to pay the bus fare to get here.

2. Top of Campanile di Giotto (Giotto’s Bell Tower)

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View of the Dome of the Florence Cathedral from the Giotto’s Bell Tower

At the very top of Giotto’s Bell Tower, you can get a unique view of the Florence Cathedral’s Dome, as well as great views of the surrounding area.  Make sure you’re in your best walking shoes and ready for a hike; there are 414 steps to the top, and there are no lifts!

How to get here:

Giotto’s Bell Tower is part of the Florence Cathedral complex, and is located right beside it,with its own separate entrance.  The tower is right in the middle of town, and from the main train station Firenze Santa Maria Novella, it is a 10 min walk.

Cost:

Access to Giotto’s Bell Tower is included in the Florence Museum ticket, which includes access to the Cathedral, the Dome, the Crypt, and the Museum.  The ticket price is 15 euros.

3. Ponte Vecchio

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View of Ponte Vecchio from Ponte Santa Trinita.

Ponte Vecchio is one of the many bridges that span the Arno river in Florence.  This particular bridge is famous due to the presence of many buildings built along the length of the bridge deck, making it one of the most unique bridges in the world.  There are many shops on the bridge that sell jewelry, art, and souvenirs.

How to get here:

A good place to view the Ponte Vecchio is from the bridge adjacent to it, towards the west, Ponte Santa Trinita.  It is within 10 mins walking distance south of the main train terminal.  After getting some photos from this perspective, walk down Lungarno degli Acciaiuoli road towards Ponte Vecchio, for closer shots from different angles.

Cost:

Free

4. Tower of Palazzo Vecchio

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View of the Florence Cathedral from the top of Palazzo Vecchio

Palazzo Vecchio is the town hall of Florence, and is a symbol of civil power.  At the top of the tower, you will  able to see the beautiful side profile of the Florence Cathedral nestled among a dense sea of buildings.

How to get here:

To access the tower, you need to pay the entrance fee for the Palazzo Vecchio museum, which is either 14 euros for both the museum + tower, or 10 euros to just visit the tower.  The entrance to Palazzo Vecchio is located at Piazza della Signoria.

Cost:

10 euros with tower admission / 14 euros with museum + tower admission

5. Top of Duomo

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View of Florence from the top of the Dome at the Florence Cathedral

From the top of the Duomo, you can see a panoramic view from the heart of Florence.  Similar to Giotto’s Bell Tower, there are no elevators up here, and you will need to walk over 400 steps to reach the top.  The passageway to the top is narrow and winding, often times only wide enough for one person to squeeze through.  Keep this in mind if you decide to come up here!

How to get here:

Entrance to the Duomo is from inside the Florence Cathedral.  From here you will need to walk up the 463 steps to reach the top, but it’s definitely worth the effort.

Cost:

Free!

I hope you find this guide useful next time you visit Florence.  If you have visited Florence before, what was your favorite viewpoint in the city?  Have we missed one?  Let us know in the comments.  If you liked this guide, please subscribe to our newsletter for more travel tips and reviews!

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