In this blog post I tell you all about my most favorite city in the World – Florence, Italy. I will share my favorite neighborhoods, food and things to do.
Florence, Italy is a city rich in history, art, and culture, making it an ideal destination for female solo travelers. Not only is the city beautiful, but it also offers a sense of safety and security to its visitors. In this blog post, I will explain why I think Florence is the perfect place for female solo travelers and recommend some budget-friendly places to eat and top things to do and see in Florence.
The best way to get to Florence, Italy depends on your location and travel preferences. If you are coming from another European city, you can easily take a train to Florence’s main station, Firenze Santa Maria Novella. High-speed trains connect Florence with major Italian cities such as Rome, Venice, Milan, and Naples. You can also fly into Florence’s airport, Amerigo Vespucci, which has direct flights from several European cities. Alternatively, you can fly into Rome or Milan and take a train to Florence.
Once you arrive in Florence, there are several neighborhoods that are popular for tourists to stay in. Here are a few options:
- Historic Center: This neighborhood is the heart of Florence, and it’s where you’ll find the city’s most famous landmarks, such as the Duomo, Ponte Vecchio, and Uffizi Gallery. Staying in the historic center puts you within walking distance of many attractions and allows you to experience the city’s charm and energy.
- Oltrarno: This neighborhood is on the other side of the Arno River from the historic center, and it’s known for its bohemian vibe and artisan workshops. Staying in Oltrarno gives you a more local experience and lets you explore quieter streets and neighborhoods.
- Santa Croce: This is my favorite neighborhood in Florence. It is just east of the historic center and is home to the Basilica di Santa Croce, one of Florence’s most famous churches. Staying in Santa Croce puts you in a quieter area but still within walking distance of the historic center.
- San Lorenzo: This neighborhood is just north of the historic center and is known for its markets, including the Mercato Centrale, a large indoor food market. Staying in San Lorenzo lets you experience the hustle and bustle of the market while still being close to the main sights.
Great Places to Eat
Florence offers some of the best food in Italy, and there are many budget-friendly options for female solo travelers. Rooster Café is a great spot for breakfast and brunch, with delicious food and a cozy atmosphere. Other great options for food include All’Antico Vinaio, which is famous for its sandwiches, and Mercato Centrale, a bustling indoor market with a wide variety of food options.
Things to Do
Here are some top things to do in Florence, including a few non-touristy options:
- Visit the Uffizi Gallery – The Uffizi Gallery is one of the most famous art museums in the world, housing an extensive collection of Renaissance masterpieces by artists such as Leonardo da Vinci, Botticelli, and Michelangelo.
- Climb the Duomo – The Duomo di Firenze, also known as the Florence Cathedral, is an iconic symbol of the city. Climbing to the top of its dome will reward you with breathtaking views of Florence.
- Explore the Oltrarno neighborhood – Located on the other side of the river Arno, the Oltrarno neighborhood is home to many artisanal workshops, boutiques, and restaurants, providing a glimpse into the local Florentine way of life.
- Walk through the Boboli Gardens – The Boboli Gardens are located behind the Pitti Palace and offer a tranquil escape from the busy city center. The gardens are home to a vast collection of sculptures, fountains, and lush greenery.
- Visit the Mercato Centrale – The Mercato Centrale is a bustling indoor food market, offering a wide variety of local produce, meat, and cheese, as well as restaurants and cooking classes.
- Take a sunset walk along the Arno River – The Arno River is the backbone of the city, and taking a stroll along its banks at sunset is a magical experience.
- See David at the Accademia Gallery – David, Michelangelo’s masterpiece sculpture, can be found at the Accademia Gallery. Seeing this awe-inspiring work of art up close is an unforgettable experience.
- Visit the Brancacci Chapel – The Brancacci Chapel is home to some of the most impressive frescoes in Florence, painted by Masaccio, Masolino, and Filippino Lippi.
- Explore the San Lorenzo Market – The San Lorenzo Market is an open-air market offering a wide variety of leather goods, clothing, and souvenirs.
- Take a day trip to the Chianti wine region – The Chianti wine region is located just outside Florence and is famous for its rolling hills, picturesque vineyards, and delicious wine. A day trip to this area is a must for wine lovers.
Safety and Security
Florence, Italy is a popular destination for tourists, including solo female travelers. Like any major city, Florence has its share of safety and security concerns. However, by following some basic precautions, you can minimize the risks and enjoy a safe and memorable trip. Here are some tips for solo female travelers visiting Florence:
- Stay in a safe area: Choose a safe neighborhood to stay in, such as Santa Croce, Santo Spirito, or San Frediano. These areas are well-lit and have a lot of foot traffic, making them less likely targets for crime.
- Keep your belongings close: Pickpocketing is common in Florence, especially in crowded areas such as train stations, markets, and tourist attractions. Keep your purse or backpack close to your body and use a cross-body bag with a zipper or a money belt to keep your valuables secure.
- Avoid dark and isolated areas: It’s best to avoid walking alone at night, especially in dark and isolated areas. Stick to well-lit, populated streets, and consider taking a taxi or public transportation if you’re going out after dark.
- Be cautious with strangers: Be friendly but cautious when interacting with strangers, especially men. Don’t give out personal information, and don’t accept drinks or food from people you don’t know well.
- Dress appropriately: Italians dress stylishly, but you don’t have to wear designer clothing to blend in. Dress smartly but low key and avoid wearing revealing clothing, especially if you’re visiting religious sites.
- Use common sense: Trust your instincts and use common sense. If something feels off or unsafe, leave the area immediately. Make sure to have a charged phone with you at all times and know the emergency numbers.
- Use official taxis: If you need to take a taxi, use only official taxis with a visible license and logo. Don’t accept rides from unlicensed drivers, and avoid getting into a taxi with strangers. Download AppTaxi on your phone. It’s a great app for calling a Taxi in Florence.
Overall, Florence is a relatively safe city for solo female travelers, but it’s important to be aware of your surroundings and take precautions to stay safe. By following these tips, you can enjoy all that this beautiful city has to offer without worrying about your safety and security.
No matter where you plan to solo travel your travel should include a travel safety plan. Grab the BaldGirlWillTravel: A Guide to Travel Safety and Security for Solo Female Travelers and ensure you follow the safety tips to ensure a safe solo travel experience.
Florence is an ideal destination for female solo travelers, offering a rich culture, beautiful architecture, and delicious food. From visiting iconic art museums to walking around beautiful parks, there is something for everyone in Florence. With a sense of safety and security, female solo travelers can explore this beautiful city with ease.
I am happy to share that I am planning a Meet Up for Florence Italy in 2024. I will share details soon so do subscribe to this website and check out the Meet Up with me Page for details.
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