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Free walking route around Florence

Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me on my walking route around Florence. I'd like to take you with me from the Ponte Vecchio to the Piazzale Michelangelo. I'll give you information about where to go and what you'll see along the way. And the best thing is: it's free! Yea, who doesn't like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?

After 3 days of exploring the city of Florence, we were tired of the crowds. The non-stop stream of tourists with their selfie sticks and the street vendors selling them. We had seen the Uffizi and the Accademia museum in Florence and we had explored the Duomo inside and out. We explored all the famous sights of Florence and discovered little hidden gems around the city.

We decided it was time to get out for some fresh air and we wanted to get away from the centre. Our main goal was the vantage point of the Piazzale Michelangelo with the replica of David. This point is famous for the sweeping views over the Arno River and the city beneath your feet. We wanted to see it.

I thought the walk was amazing and it showed some quite corners of Florence. That’s why I’d like to share this walking route around Florence with you! Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me!

I’d like to take you with me from start to finish on this walking route around Florence. I’ll give you information about where to go and what you’ll see along the way. And the best thing is: it’s free! Yea, who doesn’t like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?

Want the freebie? Click on the image below and you’ll receive a code to download the file.

Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me on my walking route around Florence. I'd like to take you with me from the Ponte Vecchio to the Piazzale Michelangelo. I'll give you information about where to go and what you'll see along the way. And the best thing is: it's free! Yea, who doesn't like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?Starting point for this walking route around Florence

The starting point is the Ponte Vecchio Bridge in Florence. We had already explored it on previous days and the bridge is truly a famous icon of the city. It’s a great starting point for our walking route around Florence, as you can easily find it. You can start at any hour of the day, although I recommend starting an hour before sun set.

Start point: Ponte Vecchio Bridge, Florence

Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me on my walking route around Florence. I'd like to take you with me from the Ponte Vecchio to the Piazzale Michelangelo. I'll give you information about where to go and what you'll see along the way. And the best thing is: it's free! Yea, who doesn't like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?

Ponte Vecchio

The bridge crosses the River Arno and you can browse around the little shops that are on the bridge or start the walk straight away.

Towards the Forte Belvedere

Cross the bridge towards the south bank of the river. You walk straight for a few meters until you’ll find the Santa Felicita church on your left side. This is one of the oldest churches in town. You can already stop for ice cream or explore the church.

There’s a little side street, left of the church and the square called “Piazza Santa Felicita”. You need to take this street. It will bring you towards the larger Costa S. Giorgio Street.

As soon as you’ll reach this street you notice two things:

#1 It goes up

# 2 The noise and the crowds vanish

The further you walk down the street, the steeper it gets and the fewer people you’ll see. This street is packed with old little houses and picturesque court yards. At number 84 you’ll find a house with a sign which reminds of Siena’s sculptor Giovanni Dupré.

Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me on my walking route around Florence. I'd like to take you with me from the Ponte Vecchio to the Piazzale Michelangelo. I'll give you information about where to go and what you'll see along the way. And the best thing is: it's free! Yea, who doesn't like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?

Streets of Florence, away from the crowds

At number 19, you’ll find the home of Galileo Galilei. So you’ll walk in good company. If needed, take a breather and check out the views over the roofs of Florence. You’ll keep following the Costa S. Giorgio Street until you reach the gate and a cross roads. You have reached the Belvedere Fortress.

San Giorgio Gate

The gate was a little surprise for us. We knew we were heading out of town, but didn’t expect to actually leave the old town. The San Giorgio Gate was built in 1324 AD. On the outside you’ll see double arches with a bas-relief of Saint George who kills the Dragon. On the inside you’ll see a colourful fresco depicting a Madonna.

Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me on my walking route around Florence. I'd like to take you with me from the Ponte Vecchio to the Piazzale Michelangelo. I'll give you information about where to go and what you'll see along the way. And the best thing is: it's free! Yea, who doesn't like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?

Walk with me!

Forte di Belvedere

The Belvedere Fort is a nice moment to rest for a bit. This fortification was built in the 16th century and used to protect the city and the Medici family. Now it’s a monument but mostly famous as the highest hill of the Boboli gardens and provides great views of the city.

When we were there, the fort was closed. But we did walk around it and peeked in the Boboli gardens and searched for a glimpse of the city beneath us. At this moment it still remains closed for the public, but this might change in the future. If Kim Kardashian and Kanya West can rent the place for their 2014 wedding, it might be accessible for all of us one day.

Walking route around Florence

We walked back to the cross roads and took the left street. This street is called Via di Belvedere and we walked into rural Florence. At least that’s what it felt like. We tried to walk in the shade and greeted the few other people we’ve met along the way.

The road goes slightly down again and we walked along the city walls. I must admit we did saw a lot of litter, so we suspected we passed the homes of a few homeless people, so I do not advice to walk this part in the evening.

Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me on my walking route around Florence. I'd like to take you with me from the Ponte Vecchio to the Piazzale Michelangelo. I'll give you information about where to go and what you'll see along the way. And the best thing is: it's free! Yea, who doesn't like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?

Walking around the cities walls

On your left is the city wall and on the right you’ll see green patches of land with lots and lots of trees. The smells of the trees were amazing at the time. You’ll keep walking until you reach the next gate in the wall.

San Miniato Gate

The next gate you’ll reach is the San Miniato Gate. The gate was built in 1320 AD. Near the doors, you’ll find the two coats of arms of the city of Florence: the Lily and the Cross.

The gate is at the start of the climb up to the Piazzale Michelangelo and at the end of the road, you’ll find the church of San Miniato al Monte.

At this moment, you’ll find yourself among the crowds again. Just follow them up the hill as you follow the Via del Monta alle Croci. You start to climb again.

You can now follow the road towards the San Miniato on top of the hill, or take the steps and walk straight to the vantage point of the Piazzale Michelangelo.

Rose Garden – Giardino delle Rose

As I was getting quite tired and was no way near fit enough to do any more climbing, we decided to take the short cut and climbed up the steps. It was already later in the afternoon and it looked like rain was coming.

Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me on my walking route around Florence. I'd like to take you with me from the Ponte Vecchio to the Piazzale Michelangelo. I'll give you information about where to go and what you'll see along the way. And the best thing is: it's free! Yea, who doesn't like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?

Taking a break at the Rose Garden

We took a little breather from climbing the steps in the Rose Garden. These terraces are built according to French example in the 19th century. Opened in 1895, the garden now has over 1.000 botanical plants. You can visit it until July 31th for free. And you can catch your breath from all the climbing. Check out this post about the Rose Garden by Georgette from GirlinFlorence.

Highest point of your walking route around Florence

We continued up on the steps and soon we found ourselves at the Piazzale Michelangelo. Michelangelo’s square with a replica of the David overlooking the city. There is a restaurant and public restrooms (they were expensive! But much needed) and there are hordes of tourists again.

You can settle on one of the benches overlooking the river and the city, take the obligatory selfie or try to get a good price from one of the street vendors.

Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me on my walking route around Florence. I'd like to take you with me from the Ponte Vecchio to the Piazzale Michelangelo. I'll give you information about where to go and what you'll see along the way. And the best thing is: it's free! Yea, who doesn't like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?

Panorama from Michelangelo Square

We really loved the views up there. You look down on the Arno River and it had a romantic feel to it. Or maybe that’s because a couple was taking their wedding pictures at the spot. After seeing the Duomo from upclose, inside and out, it’s an nice extra way to explore the Duomo from a distance.

As this point, you can either take a bus back to town or walk further and walk to the city. We decided to walk down.

Walking down from Michelangelo’s Square

As we entered the square from the west, we descended at the east. There are many staircases and steps and all end at the same point: down the hill.

Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me on my walking route around Florence. I'd like to take you with me from the Ponte Vecchio to the Piazzale Michelangelo. I'll give you information about where to go and what you'll see along the way. And the best thing is: it's free! Yea, who doesn't like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?

David statue at the Piazzale Michelangelo

Do not take the main road down though. First because it’s dangerous with all the cars, busses and cyclists on it and secondly because it’s a detour.

You can easily follow the steps down and you walk along the unwinding Viale Giuseppe Poggi. There are signs which you can easily follow.

Down by the River Arno

Once you get down from the hill, you reach the Piazza Giuseppe Poggi and you’ll see the San Niccolò tower. This tower is Florence’s tallest still standing tower and it used to be part of the city walls and entrance gate.

Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me on my walking route around Florence. I'd like to take you with me from the Ponte Vecchio to the Piazzale Michelangelo. I'll give you information about where to go and what you'll see along the way. And the best thing is: it's free! Yea, who doesn't like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?

Taking a taxi home.. Kidding!

From June till September, from 5 pm till 8 pm you can access and climb the tower. You need to pay an admission fee (€4) but this provides you with more sweeping views of the Arno River and the city.

End of the walking route around Florence

As you reach the River Arno again, you can basically go anywhere you’d like from here. If you want to come full circle, you need to continue along the river.

Walk along the Lungarno Serristori Street or try one of the little streets. Watch the water of the River Arno flow or marvel at one of the majestic houses along the street.

Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me on my walking route around Florence. I'd like to take you with me from the Ponte Vecchio to the Piazzale Michelangelo. I'll give you information about where to go and what you'll see along the way. And the best thing is: it's free! Yea, who doesn't like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?

Walking along the Arno River

In the end, you’ll reach the Ponte Vecchio again and have completed the 4 km/ 2,8 mile walking route around Florence. It took us roughly 2.5 hours to complete it, but we needed some time to catch our breath and look around. You can do it in under an hour or take all day.

Free Walking Route Around Florence: Download now

I hope you enjoyed our little walk around the city together. If you’re interested in seeing another side of Florence and take this walking route around Florence, make sure to download the route from here. Just fill out the details and you’ll have access to the map; the points of interest and you can store it on your mobile device or tablet and take it with you when you go to Florence. And guess what? It’s all free.

Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me on my walking route around Florence. I'd like to take you with me from the Ponte Vecchio to the Piazzale Michelangelo. I'll give you information about where to go and what you'll see along the way. And the best thing is: it's free! Yea, who doesn't like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?Have you enjoyed walking around Florence? Where did you go? And what did you see? Did you also take this walking route around Florence? Let me know what you think.

Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me on my walking route around Florence. I'd like to take you with me from the Ponte Vecchio to the Piazzale Michelangelo. I'll give you information about where to go and what you'll see along the way. And the best thing is: it's free! Yea, who doesn't like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?

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31 Comments

  1. March 23, 2016    

    This looks lovely! Makes me want to go back there 🙂 I love how it doesn’t just include the best known tourist spots but also slightly different destinations! Good job!!

    • March 23, 2016    

      Thanks Liesbeth. It’s really more a route around the town. Getting away of the centre with all the selfie sticks was so nice.

  2. March 7, 2016    

    this makes me miss florence so much! And you probably have seen more than I did a tourist than when I was a student.
    Mi Piace!

    • March 7, 2016    

      Don’t beat yourself up Jenna. As a student you had other priorities and now you have an excellent reason to go back and bring back the old memories and make new ones!

  3. March 5, 2016    

    I love Florence a lot, but the selfie sticks do get annoying. I guess that is a problem with a small walkable city that holds all its attractions in a small space – too crowded. But this walk looks lovely, will definitely check it out when I head there again!

    • March 5, 2016    

      That was exactly my feeling. After 3 days of discovering every little nook and cranny in the city, we needed to get out for some air.

  4. March 4, 2016    

    I love Florence, I’ve bene there several times and I would like to come back soon! All your rotes are amazing, especially Giardino delle Rose e San Miniato Gate! Well-done! 🙂

  5. March 4, 2016    

    I looooved Florence! Such a beautiful city!

    -Jen
    http://www.asipofbliss.com

  6. March 4, 2016    

    Oh I loved Florence too and yes, getting away from the crowds is SO much better!!

    • March 4, 2016    

      It sure is. The city can get so busy and it was really nice to see it from a different angle! Thank you Heather.

  7. March 3, 2016    

    I’m traveling to Italy this summer and I absolutely can’t wait to go! Thanks for sharing a route tourists don’t go! I’d love to explore and enjoy my trip to a foreign country! Will definitely be checking out more!

    • March 3, 2016    

      That’s great Gina. Are you going to Florence too? Let me know if you have any questions I might help you with.

  8. March 3, 2016    

    The trip to Tuscany in 2014 was absolutely life-changing for me – it’s when I decided to quit my job in the Corporate world and go travel the world. So every post about this beautiful part of the world makes my heart beat faster! 🙂 sadly we didn’t do a walking tour as they were too expensive – but an app is an excellent idea! Next time 😉

    • March 3, 2016    

      Thank you Tess. It’s not an app but a free download .pdf file which you can store any any device. No internet needed. So easy to take with you abroad. I recon you have some amazing memories. They last a life time.

  9. March 3, 2016    

    Oh, I love Italy! I’ve been there only twice (Venice-Verona-Lake Garda-Bologna-Venice and Rome) but I’ll definitely go back for more. Florence, Naples, Sicily, Toscana… Might need to save this for future reference, thanks! 🙂

    • March 3, 2016    

      In case you make any plans Assi, let me know if you have any questions. Florence is definatly worth your time.

  10. March 3, 2016    

    Fabulous post on Florence! I’ve done a portion of this route before and it’s fantastic- especially Piazzale Michelangelo for sunset! Love the walking route download

  11. March 3, 2016    

    Ah Florence, definitely a place on my bucket list! Thanks for some tips! 🙂

  12. March 2, 2016    

    I have visited Florence three years ago, but we mostly stayed in the old city. I really like the route and I will make sure to take it on my next visit to the area. Hiking is perfect in combination with delicious, but rich on calories Italian food 😀

  13. March 2, 2016    

    Great route! I’ve done almost exactly that route before. I love Michelangelo Square, and while we were there, we walked there more than once (I wanted to see the sunset from there — highly recommended!). I was there at a time without too much crowds, but it was still nice to get away from it all. 🙂

  14. Jo Jo
    March 2, 2016    

    Free walking tours are the best – I often do them while traveling (esp in Europe). Also, I just sometimes take a bike or start walking and exploring the city – without any maps or pre defined routes – Great fun.

  15. March 2, 2016    

    Wow what a great read! This will definitely be useful when planning my trip to Florence!

    • March 2, 2016    

      Glad you enjoyed it Miriam! Let me know if you have any other questions. I’ll happily help you enjoy Florence.

  16. March 2, 2016    

    Thanks for the helpful information! I especially liked the tip about the Rose Garden because I always want to find good places to sit on a walking tour. I haven’t been to Florence since I was 16, but I loved it then and I hope to go back soon!

    • March 2, 2016    

      Hahahah that is a great remark. Sitting options on a walking tour. But the rose garden was gorgeous and a much needed break!

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I'm Naomi and I love to travel and write about it. I'm here to share my tips and tricks on how to stay healthy and make the most out of your travels abroad

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Free Florence Walking Route

Do you like hiking or walking? Probing around the globe on foot? Strap on your hiking boots and follow me on my walking route around Florence. I'd like to take you with me from the Ponte Vecchio to the Piazzale Michelangelo. I'll give you information about where to go and what you'll see along the way. And the best thing is: it's free! Yea, who doesn't like a little freebie thrown your way every now and then?

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