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  • Day12

    Just mooching and looking up

    September 28, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

    Arrived in Florence, found our apartment (more flights of stairs!) And decided to just mooch all over to see what was what...
    We found some incredible buildings and immersed ourselves with all the people and noise and music and food and had a great day, ending with a trip to a supermarket and a home cooked dinner of spag bol and salad. Off to see David in the morning and more exploring...Read more

  • Day13

    Galleria dell Accademia di Firenze

    September 29, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    Have spent a happy few hours with Michelangelo, Bartolini and Stradovari.
    Dont really appreciate all of the religious artwork but definitely appreciate the sculptures and the music. Definitely worth a visit just for David but avoid the queues by pre booking as there was a 2hr queue at 9.30am thia morning.Read more

  • Day13

    Dramatic Floods

    September 29, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 25 °C

    In 1966 Florence was hit by a devastating flood. Over 1 million pieces of art were lost forever and 101 people were killed. It is hard to comprehend the flood but the water was 5 meters high throughout the city. The white plaque above Becky's head shows the level the water reached as does the marker post inside Santa Croce. It us almost impossible to comprehend the damage caused by the water, mixed with mud and oil, as it filled up this beautiful cityRead more

  • Day9

    Galileo und Schlendern

    September 9, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 23 °C

    Frühstück? Naja halb. Es ist immer no italienisch aber immerhin gibt es Früchte und eine Kaffeemaschine. Leider ist der Lungo auch hier nicht gut. Nach dem Frühstück packen wir unsere Sachen wir ziehen vom 1. Stock in den 2. Stock um. Juhu. Dort ist es ruhiger und später zeigt sich, auch gleich schön mit Blick auf den Garten. Heute wird kein Kirchentag, deshalb ziehen wir kurze Sachen an und los. Die erste Zeit bummeln wir einfach so durch Florenz. Stephan liebt die alten Gebäude, Annatina eher weniger. Wir bummeln durch ein paar Läden und schauen uns Vitrinen von teuren Marken an. Am Nachmittag beschliessen wir etwas sinnvolles zu tun und besuchen das Galileo Museum. Hier werden viele Messgeräte, Globolis, und Erfindungen von Galileo und vielen Anderen Wissenschaftlern aus dieser Zeit ausgestellt. Leider nicht all zu gut erklärt. Es gibt aber zu einigen Erfindungen und Experimenten Erklärungen was damit entdeckt wurde und wieso. Dank der Tatsache, dass Stephan bei Naturwissenschaften keinen Fensterplatz hatte, lernt wenigstens Annatina, dank fachkundigen Erklärungen etwas. Über Galileo erzählt das Museum leider nicht so viel.
    Nach so viel Wissenschaft geniessen wir in einem Irishen Pub ein richtiges Bier und ruhen uns dann etwas im Zimmer aus. Langsam macht sich das schnelle reisen bemerkbar. Im Gegenteil zu Asien verstehen wir hier aber immerhin die Gepflogenheiten und die Kultur.
    Zum Abendessen zieht es uns in ein Restaurant welches angeblich etwas speziellere Versionen der italienischen Küche kocht. Stephan ist begeistert. Annatina etwas weniger, aber man kann nicht immer so Glück haben wir gestern.
    Hoffen wir auf morgen. 😉
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  • Day13

    Basilica di Santa Croce

    September 29, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 26 °C

    Spend a happy couple of hours paying our respects to Michelangelo, Galileo , Roasini, Machiavelli, Dante (although he rests elsewhere) and Florence Nightingale. (Although she is buried in Hampshire) Rested our eyes upon sculptures by Donatello and frescoes painted by Gaddi and Giotto.
    Honestly humbled to see his work and his final resting place (Michelangelo) and even a memorial to Leonardo Da Vinci.
    At €8 per person very worth it but be prepared to book in advance or queue.
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  • Day15

    Florenz - die Hauptstadt der Toskana

    August 20, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 36 °C

    Nachdem ich gestern leider den ganzen Tag Trainings hatte und keinen Ausflug begleiten konnte, ging es dafür heute den ganzen Tag in die einstige Hauptstadt Italiens. Wunderschön und ein architektonisches Meisterwerk jagt das andere.

  • Day16

    Gallerie degli Uffizi, Florence

    December 7, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 14 °C

    Next on the agenda for today was a visit to the Gallerie degli Uffizi, one of the oldest museums in the world and one of the world’s most famous art galleries. The Uffizi hosted over four million visitors in 2018, making it the most visited art gallery in Italy. Established in 1581 it officially opened to the public in 1765. The museum possesses about 3100 works of art and there are usually about 1700 on display at any given time, with the majority of the Uffizi collection from the period between the 12th and 17th century. Among the famous artists whose work is on display here are Leonardo da Vinci, Raffaello, Sandro Botticelli, Raphael and Michelangelo. Records show that even da Vinci and Michelangelo visited the Uffizi to see the precious art collection.

    The gallery also boasts and invaluable collection of ancient statues and busts from the Medici family, which adorn the corridors and consists of ancient Roman copies of lost Greek sculptures. Some dating back to the 1st century BC. It is amazing to see the amount of detail that can be achieved and carved into a block of marble. It is unfathomable how the artists even knew where to start. Very impressive.

    It was great to see some of the more “famous” pieces but it also made us wonder what made them more well-known than some of the other pieces, especially when we saw other artworks just as impressive. I guess the question is still valid today. What makes art a notable piece of art? We all liked different pieces and that is the great thing about the arts, not everyone has to like the same thing. We all have our own unique taste.

    Occupying the first and second floor of the large building constructed between 1560 and 1580, and originally built to accommodate the Florentine magistrates, the building itself is a work of art with the amazing painted ceilings throughout the external rooms. I love the ceilings with their weird images, delicate lines and vivid colours and spent a lot of the visit looking up. There are some crazy looking creatures painted on the ceiling, that’s for sure, and yet all together the ceilings give the building such an elegant and regal feeling. It is impressive.

    I think this is one gallery that needs more than one day to explore if you want to have the time to appreciate all of the art on display, as it is quite extensive and a bit of an art overload when trying to see every room. The crowded tour groups didn’t help but we are lucky we are here in the “off” season as I can only imagine how busy it would be in the official “tourist” season. Overall, I enjoyed it and hopefully Brad, Peta and Errol enjoyed it too.
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  • Day16

    Chiesa di Santa Maria Maggiore, Florence

    December 7, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ☁️ 11 °C

    As Brad and I headed out for our morning coffee we came across Chiesa di Santa Maria Maggiore, the oldest church in Florence. The original church existed as early as the 8th century and is first documented in 931 AD with the current building constructed in the 11th century and undergoing extensive renovations to the façade in the 13th century. The exterior is quite plain and simple so the inside was a bit surprising with some very interesting decorations, and the tombs of several prominent historical people.

    The artworks include frescoes on the ceilings and pillars, which are always the first things to catch my eye, a Nativity by Matteo Rosselli and a vivid polychromed stucco relief panel, the Madonna del Carmelo. The artwork in this church was unusual with a mixture of wooden and metal sculpture protruding from the pillars to realistic statues of Jesus after his crucifixion. While not one of the most impressive churches we have seen, it was a little gem hidden in plain sight in a big city.
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  • Day16

    Mercato Nuovo, Florence

    December 7, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 14 °C

    After meeting up with Peta and Errol for another coffee (Italian coffee is the best), we started exploring the streets of Florence. Even though we have been here before there is still so much to see, so much history to absorb. As we were making our way towards the Piazza della Signoria, we can across the Mercato Nouvo and we knew we had to stop and shop for some Italian leather items – it was a must.

    The Mercato Nuovo or Straw Market is located in the historic centre of Florence and is a covered market that has been open for business as far back as the 11th century. It gets its name from one of the traditional products sold in the market, straw and from the fact it is the “new” market place that replaced the old market in Piazza Vecchio. The Market stalls are protected by the loggia del Porcellino with high arched openings, which was constructed in 1551.

    The most famous attraction in the market is the Fontana del Porcellino which features a bronze statue of a wild boar. This piece is a replica of the original which stands in the Uffizi Gallery and was created by Pietro Tacca. Visitors to Il Porcellino put a coin into the boar’s mouth with the intent to let it fall through the underlying grating for good luck or to have a wish come true, and rub the boar’s snout to ensure a return to Florence or for good luck. There are a variety of “traditions” associated with this statue dating back to as early as 1766 when a Scottish literary traveler made note of it. These traditions have kept the snout of the boar in a state of polished sheen while the rest of the boar’s body has patinated to a dull brownish green. It has also been replaced a couple of times due to the wear on the snout.
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You might also know this place by the following names:

Firenze, Florence

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