Italy
Museum of Opera of Saint Maria of Fiore

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  • Day6

    Abend in Florenz

    July 21 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 36 °C

    Nach einer ausschweifenden Siesta am Nachmittag zogen wir 18Uhr wieder los.

    Diesmal war unser Ziel hoch oben über den Dächern von Florenz, den „Piazzale Michelangelo“.
    Der Weg nach oben war zwar etwas schweißtreibend, aber als wir angekommen waren, merkten wir, dass sich jeder Schweißtropfen gelohnt hatte.

    Wir hatten eine tolle Aussicht über ganz Florenz in der späten Abendsonne. Begleitet wurde die Aussicht von der Musik verschiedener Straßenkünstler. Wir setzten uns auf die Treppenstufen und ließen alles auf uns wirken.

    Auf den Weg nach unten entdeckten wir noch eine schöne Brunnenanlage.

    Am Abend gingen wir in ein Lokal, welches uns durch die vollen Tische und einer gemütlichen Atmosphäre aufgefallen war.
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  • Day118

    Last day in Florence

    July 17 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 97 °F

    Miles: 12.0 Steps: 28151
    Flights stairs: 40

    We had a really busy last day in Florence. We decided to get an early start and beat the heat for the climb up the Giotto Bell tower - 413 steps, in 85° to 95° heat. It was a tough one. It did my old heart good to see even the youngest people reach the top and not look any better than me. Huffing and puffing covered in sweat. Beautiful view tho, so worth it.

    Then to the Florence baptistery. I guess in the old days you couldn’t enter a Catholic Church unless you were baptized. It made it difficult - so the baptistery was a separate building from the church. The gold ceiling was quite the site.

    We headed to the Uffizi museum next and saw hundreds of sculptures, and some amazing paintings - most notably the “birth of Venus”. Jordan studied it in school so really enjoyed seeing it in person.

    We split up at this point - Jordan went back to the hostel to enjoy the pool for awhile and I kept at it. I went to the Basilica of Santa Croce. It’s famous for being Michelangelo’s burial site. And then to the Santa Reparata (the underground ancient remains of the original Florence cathedral). Pretty interesting.

    I popped into the Opera del duomo museum and saw more amazing pieces of art, and then decided the pool was sounding pretty good for my overheated body, so headed back for a swim. The pool was ice cold, which was nice after being so hot.

    After cooling down a bit and having a great Italian dinner, we walked a ways to the highest point in Florence - the San Mianato Al monte to get a glimpse of the city from above, and then over to the Pizzale Michelangelo for sunset and to see the city at night. It’s a beautiful atmosphere with live street performers singing and such. Overall, had a great couple days seeing Florence
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    Don Norman

    Brings back fond memories of our times in Florence and climbing the stairs in the duomo and seeing the master pieces of art. Wonderful memories.

    Donna McGovert

    Wow! So impressive! Great job!!!! Amazing view!!!

    Kathryn Kelley

    I can’t believe how much your walking and SO MANY stairs! My hat is off to you. All that walking and in such heat🥵

    Christie Mitchell

    I know!! It’s been crazy. We hit 800 mile mark the other day - we average about 7 miles a day. Legs are firming up, that’s for sure. and the stairs ... europe is not very disabled person friendly. almost no elevators and TONS of stairs

     
  • Day15

    Sights in Florence

    July 29 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 82 °F

    Once arriving in the Livorno port, it is about a 90 minute bus ride to Florence from the cruise ship. I opted for a shore excursion through the cruise line and overall, I think it turned out to be a wise idea.

    Once in Florence, we had a meeting point at Piazza Santa Croce which was within walking distance to a few of the major sites like the Palazzo Vecchio, Uffizi Museum, Ponte Vecchio, the famous Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, and Piazza del Duomo. Along the entrance to the Uffizi Museum, there were many sculptures of Renaissance men. There is also an exact replica of Michaelangelo’s sculpture of David.
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  • Day3

    Well, Ciao Pilgrim!

    June 22 in Italy ⋅ ☁️ 91 °F

    After our walking tour in Florence (“Firenze” to us now), we felt we needed to do some more training for our hike, so we set out to discover a few historical landmarks. We found the Ponte Vecchio (which translates to “Old Bridge”), built in 1345 to cross the Arno River and is one of many engineering achievements in Florence from the Middle Ages. People still live in apartments on that bridge!

    We became a bit turned around and lost for an hour or so, but finally found the Basilica of Santa Croce, sometimes called, “the Mausoleum of Italy.” There were so many people dying to get in, that we felt lucky enough to skip the line and walk our Credenziale del Pellegrino (Pilgrim Credential/Passport for The Way of Saint Frances) up for our very first pilgrim stamp. We didn’t feel a thing… and only 35 more to go!

    We even fit in a little tour of Dante’s childhood home. And, that place was no joke! It was hell to get there. (That’s divine comedy, people!)

    After paying our respects at the tombs of Galileo Galilei, Machiavelli and Michelangelo, we left the cathedral ready to carbo-load today and hike tomorrow.

    p.s. If anyone reading this post is worried about our mapping skills (Travis, Jen R, our families, the citizens of Italy…), don’t worry! We are too.
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    Jenifer Rutigliano

    Already got lost? 🤦‍♀️ #goodluck

    6/23/22Reply
    Tiffy HQ

    less than a day and already lost multiple times. Should we post your job positions just in case??

    6/23/22Reply
    Mark Stevens

    Wait, people were dying to get into the mausoleum? Heh

    6/23/22Reply
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  • Day17

    Firenze, Uffizi Gallery & More

    June 18 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 86 °F

    Firenze (Florence) is an artistic, culinary and wine focused city. It feels more accessible than Rome or Venice. Like the other cities- there are many tourists but here you meet many more Italians. You hear them chatting with each other about politics and see them walking with their families and dogs.

    While we did not go wine tasting, we did test out the gelato. Kai is very particular about gelato. Gelato di Nature of Venice is in first place. The gelato of Firenze is in 2nd place. Alas, the gelato tested in Rome was inferior and of poor quality. Of course, we ate it anyway because it was hot outside and even poor gelato is cold.

    Our photos focus on the Uffizi Gallery. An amazing place that consumed most of our day.

    Tomorrow we return to Venice, collect are bags, rent a car and 🏎 (drive) to the Dolomites 😎.
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    Gabriela Layi

    Those are very famous paintings you have seen. I heard that Florence is very beautiful. You are covering a lot of ground! Love the pics of you and Kai. 🥰

    6/19/22Reply

    love it: [lauren]

    6/19/22Reply
    Peggy Brandt

    Firenze was my favorite, too! Gelato was important to my travels in Italy, too. I have a distinct memory of carefully selecting my gelato flavor of choice for the day somewhere in Italia: rose … and it was SO HORRIBLE! It tasted like air freshener. Such a let-down I remember it 40 years later. This is the potential impact of gelato on your life: nothing to be trivialized, for sure!

    6/20/22Reply
     
  • Day2

    Day 2, Part 1/3— Gucci Garden & Panini

    June 18 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 88 °F

    Today we woke up and had breakfast at the hotel. I mean, what’s better than an Italian “continental” breakfast? Delicious Bellini, charcuterie, fresh bread and pastries— divine! I actually also ate a salad, for health reasons. After breakfast, we walked to Ditta Artigianale, a coffee shop Matt has been talking about for months. He proceeded not to get anything, and then we walked over to Gucci Garden. https://www.gucci.com/it/it/st/stories/inspirat… Gucci Garden is an experience unique to Florence, where Gucci originated. There’s a cafe, a museum and a shop with exclusive items that aren’t sold anywhere else— including THE INTERNET. The museum was VERY cool, taking you behind the scenes of some of the most famous Gucci campaigns of the past 20 years. I found a bag I just HAD to have… see pics and you’ll understand!!

    Today was kind of a double lunch day. We headed over to SandwiChic to try some of Florence’s famous panini. https://m.facebook.com/sandwichic/ There are other places that have lines down the street, and I KNOW there are MANY great sandwiches in Florence but these were UNREAL. We got the salame and pecorino sandwich on “pane”, which is a flatter, almost cakey bread and the prosciutto cotto with truffle spread on the “schiacciata” which looks thick, like a focaccia, but is so light, it melts in your mouth. Nothing like the dense and chewy bread you’d expect from the visual. We walked around the back roads of Florence, dipping in and out of shops and grabbed some gelato at La Strega Nocciola. Yogurt flavor got a 10/10. https://www.lastreganocciola.it/
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    Brenda Hollabaugh

    Loving all the photos and commentary!! Keep them coming. Glad your enjoying everything!! We love you B, B and G❤️

    6/18/22Reply
    Matt Kurzmann

    B, B & G my favorite band!

    6/18/22Reply
    Kate Kurzmann

    Ooh LOVE!!! 🤤🤤

    6/18/22Reply
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  • Day3

    Day 3, Part 2/3– Tuscany and Shopping

    June 19 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 93 °F

    After the winery, we took a quick stop in a beautiful Tuscan town called Panzano. There was a lovely open air market, cute shops and more wine. We stopped in an outpost of another Tuscan winery called Vecchie Terre Di Montefili and were treated to a tasting (which we paid for) by a lovely, middle-aged polish gentleman who is just doing a quick jaunt as a wine expert in Tuscany… must be nice! The wine was wonderful. Still ate no food. Again, not hungry since yesterday. Next we headed to the Mall Firenze, an outlet mall of only luxury designer stores. It *was* very cool to see these super intricate pieces up close and even try some on, but overall, I wouldn’t say it was my favorite shopping experience. Matt, however, bought several items, so I am happy about that. From the mall, we drove back into the city, approx 45 min. The drives were the best part of the day, with all the amazing Tuscan scenery. As most basic bitches are, I am totally obsessed with the whole cypress tree/villa situation. It’s so gorgeous. I will never tire of it.Read more

    Matt Kurzmann

    Note to the author: I bought 3 ties and a T-shirt at a discount store not exactly a Full priced Gucci bag 🙄🙄

    6/19/22Reply
    Katie Rosen

    Let me live!

    6/19/22Reply
    Brenda Hollabaugh

    I think this is the third photo where Matt is carrying the Mrs. handbag. Lol

    6/21/22Reply
    Katie Rosen

    It gets heavy!

    6/22/22Reply
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  • Day1

    Day 1, Part 1/3— Portait and Sostanza

    June 17 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 90 °F

    WE HAVE ARRIVED!! Once we got to Florence, we checked into our hotel, the Portrait, which is part of the Lungarno collection, owned by Ferragamo. https://www.lungarnocollection.com/portrait-fir… . The toilet paper and toilet brush are housed behind their own little doors in the bathroom. So chic! There’s also a tiny dishwasher, a fridge and a microwave in the room. It’s a whole *now you see it, now you don’t* kitchenette. I’m in love!!

    Immediately after check in, we headed to lunch at Trattoria Sostanza (https://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g… ) for salty Parma ham with sugar sweet melon, tortellini en brodo, butter chicken (lightly egg battered, cooked in brown butter and finished with lemon— sopping up that sauce with the bread… heaven!!!) and artichoke pie (swirly soft eggs with fresh braised artichoke hearts). It was both delightful and delicious. I did they ordering and it made our waiter highly uncomfortable, in this male dominated culture! He kept checking with Matt to make sure he was ok with everything I ordered and that we were indeed sharing.
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    Robin Rosen

    You have not been married 10 years, right?

    6/18/22Reply
    Katie Rosen

    Lol correct

    6/18/22Reply
    Robin Rosen

    What is the right number?

    6/18/22Reply

    I think we’re going on five [Katie Rosen]

    6/18/22Reply
    Kate Kurzmann

    It’s actually quite confusing w a NYE wedding

    6/18/22Reply
    Katie Rosen

    Ha!!! Matt says he agrees!

    6/18/22Reply
     
  • Day6

    Der schiefe Turm von Pisa

    July 21 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 38 °C

    Da stand er nun da und sorgte mich etwas um die Stabilität dieses Bauwerks mit seinen 4 Grad Neigung, was auf die komplette Höhe von 56m einen Unterschied von 3,60m ausmacht.

    Sehr fasziniert, begann unsere Fotosession. Dabei konnte uns nichts und niemand stoppen und den ein oder anderen haben wir bestimmt ein Schmunzeln auf die Lippen gezaubert 😂.

    Nach einem Gelato und einer kurzen Runde in der Innenstadt ging es auch schon wieder zurück nach Florenz, wo wir dem Tipp unseres Reiseleiters nachgegangen sind und einen verspäteten Mittagsstop am San Lorenzo Central Market gemacht haben. Dort gab es eine leckere Pizza 🍕.
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  • Day5

    Florence

    July 20 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 39 °C

    Mit dem Zug starteten wir heute früh vom Bahnhof Termini mit dem Zug nach Florence.

    Nach hektischen 20 Minuten am Bahnhof gestaltete sich die Zugfahrt sehr entspannt 😌.

    Angekommen in Florenz liefen wir einmal quer durch die Innenstadt zu unserem Hotel. Der erste Eindruck war durchaus positiv. Viele kleine Straßen, gemütliche Restaurants aber leider natürlich auch wieder eine Flutwelle an Touristen. Nachdem wir unseren Koffer dort untergestellt haben, ging es mal wieder auf Erkundungstour.

    Am „Pitti Palast“ gönnten wir uns noch einmal ein bisschen Kultur und besuchten die Kunstmuseen.
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Museum of Opera of Saint Maria of Fiore

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