Cityscape of Florence

We moved from Venice to Florence and discovered a world of cultural history. The city itself is over 2000 years old, founded by none other than Julius Caesar. I am a history buff, and while I prefer military history, there is no denying the attraction of the former residents and goings-on that makes up the history of Florence.

You can get a glimpse of the importance of this city by the list of some of its former residents: Michelangelo, da Vinci, Galileo, Machiavelli, Donatello, Dante Alighieri and of course, the Medici family. The architecture everywhere is so incredible that you eventually just come to accept the grandness of everything as normal.

I should mention that I have been to Florence once before, when I was 14 years old. Perhaps the strongest memory that I have of that trip was brought back on this one and it is my must see recommendation for Florence. If you are only in Florence for a brief time, the one thing that you have to see is Michelangelo's David. Before I saw it for the first time, I must admit that I was not too excited to see a statue of a naked man. However, the detail and grandness of the statue can only be described as awe-inspiring. Michelangelo certainly has other great work, but David, to me, is his greatest. You can read about his life in The Agony and the Ecstasy by Irving Stone. The artwork available to view in Florence is too numerous to list, but the architecture features a few things that really need to be visited. The first is the Duomo. It is possible to climb to the top of the Duomo and catch some amazing views of the city and the countryside, but I would recommend against it. Instead, visit the inside of the Duomo, but go to the nearby Campanile and climb to the top of it. It will give you the same views, but included in the view will be the Duomo itself. That is how Sara got such good pictures of it. Also, the trip is not complete without a walk across the Ponte Vecchio. This famous bridge's beauty actually saved it in World War II. During the German retreat through Florence, Hitler almost blew up the bridge to slow the Allies' pursuit. At the last minute, he could not do it because of its beauty. Of course, that did not bode well for the surrounding neighborhood, which he leveled, but at least the bridge survived. While Florence is not as well known as Rome for its history, a visit there will show you that it is rich in cultural history and the art and architecture rivals anywhere else in the world. Must See: David by Michelangelo - Bring a camera.
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