Day 5 – Florence

Posted on July 4, 2014

The Duomo is big.

The day started with packing and preparations for our train journey from Rome to Florence. We headed out fairly early and participated in some run-of-the-mill walking, training, waiting, walking, training until we finally arrived in Florence.

After checking in and a rest for lunch, we decided to walk to The Duomo and take a look (it’s a short walk from where we’re staying). Unfortunately, it was closed by the time we got there. But we looked at what we could from the outside. It’s huge. Had no chance of fitting it in frame. I’m hoping to go inside tomorrow and climb to the top. I’ve climbed it in Assassin’s Creed before, so should be pretty easy the second time.

The Duomo from behind... see that amazing 13th century scaffolding?

The Duomo from behind… see that amazing 13th century scaffolding?

Nothing much exciting today, so no photos really. Mostly just travelled and walked a bit. Should have a more exciting day tomorrow.

Day 6 – Florence

Posted on July 5, 2014

463 small steps for man.

A late start today, but straight to The Duomo again, this time we went inside to look around. Not too much to see, it’s quite bare (though huge). Some paintings and things though.

After looking inside, we lined up to climb the many stairs leading to the top of the Dome. Was a bit of a wait until we got inside. Once we did, we started climbing stairs. Up, up, up the stairs we went (463 of them), through narrow passages with low ceilings, until finally arriving at the top.

There was a complete 360 degree view of Florence, it was pretty cool. Took a lot of photos, but they don’t really do it justice.

Also attempted to take a few hand-held shots to make a panorama. Didn’t turn out perfectly, especially since I had to line the pictures up on my Surface (smaller screen), but still looks quite nice.

Florence Panorama.

Florence Panorama.

After a rest at the apartment, we headed out again to Piazzale Michelangelo. It is a square on a hill which overlooks all of Florence. We left at about 6pm and got there a bit before 7pm. It is an amazing view of the city, better than from The Duomo I think, as you get to see the whole city at once (including the river).

A view of Florence.

A view of Florence.

We stayed until sunset (about 9pm) and watched over the city, taking hundreds of photos. I won’t bore you with all of them, but here’s a select few.

Took a few more shots on the walk back.

Now I’m back at the apartment with a nice pizza and some icy cold pineapple juice…

Day 7 – Florence

Posted on July 6, 2014

Good things come to those who wait.

Today we visited the Accademia Gallery. It has a lot of interesting paintings and statues. Most famously, the statue of David.

First though, we had to wait in line for a while (as usual). By the time we got in, it was lunch time (we did leave pretty late this morning though). It wasn’t as large as the Vatican Museum, but had some cool things to see. A lot of similar paintings of Jesus though. Unfortunately photos weren’t allowed in most of the areas, so only took a few.

Oddly, one of the few areas you could take photos was in the room with the statue of David. Maybe they had given up trying to stop people? Anyway, here he is. Quite remarkable to see the level of detail up close.

Meet Dave.

Meet Dave.

Day 8 – Florence

Posted on July 7, 2014

And We rested on the seventh day.

Today was to be a day of rest and little adventure as a lot of things are closed on Sunday and we had a late start. We decided we would go to Ponte Vecchio (the “famous” bridge), walk around a bit and then go back to the apartment. Luckily, we were waylaid, but more on that later.

Firstly the bridge. It didn’t seem all too spectacular as we approached. It was fairly crowded with a lot of shops around. I found it had a much nicer view looking out than looking in.

The view from Ponte Vecchio.

The view from Ponte Vecchio.

Afterwards, we walked around a bit more, expecting to soon head back. But then the buildings parted and lo there was the Palazza Pitti (Pitti Palace). We thought we might as well see if we can go in and look around, though it seemed to require payment to enter.

I’m not sure if it was due to it being Sunday, or some other reason, but there were no staff at the entrance, so we just walked in. There are a few museums inside, but we didn’t go into them. We did go through to the Boboli Gardens though. It was quite large and had some great areas to sit and look over Florence.

We then got some Gelato and headed back to the apartment, hoping to get a nice fruit smoothie from the Juice Bar nearby. It was closed.

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