Oh Florence, it’s impossible not to feel romantic amongst those beautiful stone buildings, and sensual artworks. This is a city made for love as all the (illegal) padlocks scrawled with lovers’ names on the Ponte Vecchio attest. Here are some suggestions of things to do to make your visit extra-special.
Sunsets and Panoramic Views
Some of the best places to view the sunset in Florence, as well as Florence itself, are:
Piazzale Michelangelo. On a hill south of the Arno river, across from the main historic center of the city, Piazzale Michelangelo was designed in 1869 and has a wonderful panoramic view of the city.
Ponte Vecchio. Not a panoramic view but you can spend sunset in the middle of the Ponte Vecchio eating gelati and watching the lights come on along the riverbanks as the Florentines head home for the evening.
San Miniato al Monte. San Miniato al Monte is one of the most beautiful churches in Florence, perhaps even in Italy. Dating from the 11th century it is perched on one of the highest hills in the city. Don’t forget to look up at the ceiling. Around sundown, the monks chant evensong in the chapel below the altar – it is exquisitely moving. Afterwards you can watch the sun set and the moon rise over Florence as this place has one of the best views of the city. If you are there earlier in the day, walk back down the hill along the path with the stations of the cross and, if it’s spring or summer, divert through the rose gardens. This will then lead you down to the Japanese Garden at the bottom of the hill.
Boboli Gardens. These gardens attached to the Pitti Palace are some of the biggest and loveliest in Florence. Take a picnic and stretch out on the grass with a view of the domes and towers of Florence.
Concerts in Churches
Many churches in Florence host music events. One regular programme can be found at the Church of Santo Stefano al Ponte Vecchio, hidden just off the main street. Another is at the riverside Evangelical Lutheran Church of Florence at Lungarno Torrigliani, 11.
It might seem cliché but wearing a ring/necklace/earrings from the goldsmiths who have been on the Ponte Vecchio since the Renaissance will bring lasting romance home with you.
Soaking in thermal waters or healing mud is always a romantic treat and not far from Florence, in the town of Montecatini Terme, you can do both.
And of course, there’s nothing like sipping a glass of chianti in one of the magnificent squares of Florence, gazing out at the Duomo, or at the Palazzo Vecchio and Michelangelo’s ideal of man: David. Or, take a Chianti wine tasting tour outside town in the romantic Tuscan hills!