Never content in being anything less than perfect, the opulent city of Florence is where the beautiful people reside – amidst strutting narrow streets with russet-roofed buildings, fluttering boutiques and world-famous museums that seemingly pop up on every adjoining road. The home of Michelangelo, Donatello and more recently, Gucci – Florence has undeniable style and bravado to match; an impressive mix of understated romance and embellished swagger where even the streets congested with scooters and flustered tourists are deeply attractive.
The birthplace of the great era of Humanism and the Renaissance – movements which radically renewed the culture and art of the time – and home of the Medici family (Italy's most progressive art patrons), Florence houses some of the world’s greatest art treasures in the many art galleries and museums, as well as architectural masterpieces. Particular highlights include the mighty Duomo which is one of the astonishing engineering feats from the Renaissance, the Ponte Vecchio Bridge that spans the River Arno and is lined with medieval-style shops selling goods including jewellery and souvenirs, the ancient Baptistry and the superb Medici Palace.
Between admiring the sights, meander down the narrow streets that are the perfect place to enjoy a spot of window-shopping, find a fantastic 'gelato' (ice-cream) or to linger over an espresso at a pavement café. Florence also offers a varied nightlife with everything from salsa to opera.
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Health facilities, hygiene and disease risks vary worldwide and you should take health advice about your specific needs from your general practitioner or a specialist clinic as early as possible before travel. Those planning to become pregnant should discuss their travel plans with their healthcare provider to assess their risk of infection with Zika. For information about Zika, other mosquito-borne diseases (such as Dengue fever and Chikungunya) and Lyme Disease (caused by tick bites), and to receive advice on mosquito bite avoidance measures, please visit http://travelhealthpro.org.uk/insect-tick-bite-avoidance/ In addition, we highly recommend that you seek specialist advice from your doctor and, where recommended, obtain vaccinations or tablets for protection against, for example: Malaria, Hepatitis A, Polio and Typhoid. In some cases, treatments for Malaria should begin well in advance of travel. Travellers may also be required to show Yellow Fever Certificates on arrival in certain destinations ie, some African countries. Please note that you are strongly advised against scuba-diving for 24 hours before travelling by air. We would also like to draw your attention to the risk of DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) and recommend that you consult with your doctor before travelling.
Visit the FCO website and select your destination country for the very latest travel advice: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice
Additional links to sources of information include: www.hpa.org.uk and http://nathnac.net
Sources of information include: www.fco.gov.uk, www.hpa.org.uk and www.nathnac.org, your General Practitioner or a specialised clinic.
Visa and Advance Passenger Information
All passengers must ensure they have a valid, acceptable passport, any required visa and any other documentation for both the final destination and any stop-off points en route. Please make sure that Advance Passenger Information is submitted in advance to travel for all destinations. Failure to hold correct documentation or submitting incorrect details with Advance Passenger Information or Visa applications may result in refusal of carriage or entry into a country. Please check with the relevant Embassy regarding visa requirements well in advance of your travel date. Charges may apply for some visas.Travelling With Children or Without an Adult
Children travelling without both parents should be aware that some countries require documentary evidence of parental responsibility before allowing lone parents to enter the country (for example, South Africa) or, in some cases, before permitting the children to leave the country. Please contact the relevant Embassy for the county you are travelling to for further information.
Passengers not travelling on a British Passport are advised to contact their relevant Foreign & Commonwealth office for individual Visa requirements.
For up-to-date resort information, visit www.fco.gov.uk
Florence enjoys a Mediterranean climate, with high temperatures and sunny days in the summer and colder, damper weather in the winter. In the spring and autumn, temperatures are at their most comfortable and pleasant, while July and August are usually hot.
These figures show monthly average maximum temperatures and monthly average rainfall for Florence.
Art & Architecture
Every street of Florence's compact city centre is crammed with Renaissance cultural treasures to explore. Highlights include the Duomo cathedral, inlaid with pink, white and green marble and soaring above the surrounding buildings in the Piazza del Duomo and the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore – scale the cupola for a spectacular overview of the city. The Rocco Forte Hotel Savoy is located on the historic Piazza della Repubblica close to the Uffizi Gallery where you might like to spend an afternoon with the masters of Renaissance painting. The Galleria dell'Accademia is another gallery worth seeing.
The stunning hillside hotel, Belmond Villa San Michele provides a complimentary shuttle bus service to the historical city centre whilst Il Salviatino situated within twelve acres of private parkland in Fiesole, is home to its own 19th century frescoes and antique artwork.
If you feel like exploring further, you can be deep in the heart of the lovely Chianti countryside in less than half an hour. Enjoyexploring the Chianti wine trail and vistas of the region's vineyards and live groves.
Meridiana and British Airways from London Gatwick to Florence. UK regional departures and charter flights are also available.
2 hours 0 mins From London Gatwick
Meridiana upgrades start from as little as £100 per person, each way.
Our Travel Consultants can advise on, arrange and pre-book many things to enhance your holiday. This includes everything from spa reservations and dinner reservations, to a range of special experiences available in our featured resorts that you may not know about.
If you’re quite an accomplished cook, you may like to attend Belmond Villa San Michele’s famed Tuscan cooking school where the Chef will share some of his culinary secrets.