Palazzo Vecchio and Piazza della Signoria

PIAZZA DELLA SIGNORIA AND PALAZZO VECCHIO

THE CENTER OF FLORENTINE POLITCAL POWER
A square like no other in the world: an open air museum and a window on history, this is Piazza della Signoria.

The square has been and is Florence political center, it has been defined by centuries of struggle for political power by Florentine families and parties, till the Medici claimed absolute power in the 16th century. Leaning over the Square, the seven centuries old Palazzo Vecchio and its high tower, Arnolfo Tower, is one of the world’s most recognizable medieval buildings.


PIAZZA DELLA SIGNORIA AND PALAZZO VECCHIO | 2 to 5 HOURS
A touring experience set in a very small space but that will impress you with the history and art in each detail of the Square, Without having to walk more than a couple of minutes, you and your group will acquire all the information necessary to understand the history and the politics in Florence while enjoying and learning about the art around you.

Experience an open air museum!


THE TOUR
Meeting at your hotel or an established location. Walk to Piazza della Signoria and start with an urban architectural introduction. Continue with potilical facts and learn about the continuous struggle over power from the 13th to 16th century in Florence. Focus on original art present in the Square by great masters such as Giambologna, Cellini, Ammannati and replicas of art by Donatello and Michelangelo (the David) and many other artists.

Continue the tour inside the Palazzo Vecchio, starting at the interior courtyards and then visiting the first floor and the breathtaking Hall of the Five Hundred, a majestic chamber, 52 meters (170 feet) long.

On the second floor, you can admire different interior spaces, apartments and chambers, that have been remodeled in the 16th century, when the Medici lived in the Palace, by artists and architects like Vasari, Ghirlandaio and Bronzino.

On request, follow up with a tour of the adjacent Uffizi Gallery.


TOUR DETAILS
Participants | Up to 12 people. Please inquire about larger groups.
Duration | 2 to 5 hours approx.
Schedules | Daily except on Thursday.
Fee* | From 230 Euros.

* “Skip the Line” tickets not included, price around 10 Euro per person per museum. At Touring Florence, we don’t charge a commission for tickets if you book our tours.

For opening hours and other information, please check the Musei Civici Fiorentini official website.

neptune-fountain-florence

Neptun Fountain, Ammannati.

hall of the five hundred florence

Hall of the Five Hundred,
Palazzo Vecchio.

Rato delle Sabine, Giambologna. Rape of Sabine Women - Florence

The Rape of the Sabine Women,
Giambologna.

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A Night at the Opera

A Night at the Opera

A unique musical experience with a Night at the Opera.

Florence is the birth place of Opera. At the end of XVI century, a group of Florentine intellectuals and musicians called the Camerata de’ Bardi, created this new theatrical musical genre. This exclusive and unique experience is a journey of discovery of art, under its musical and theatrical form.

TOUR DETAILS
Start this experience by joining your tour/music expert for a panoramic of the musical scene in Florence and the history of Opera. You will also be touring the historical center of Florence with special stops at locations of interested for music and Opera. Stop for a short aperitif or dinner break and then continue your tour by going to the Opera.

MUSIC AND OPERA DETAILS
Concerts, Operas and musical events are available almost on daily basis. Florence has three main theaters. Below you will find links to their websites where you can check the programs.

Teatro Comunale – Maggio Musicale Fiorentino
http://www.maggiofiorentino.com/?q=en/node

Teatro Verdi (Italian website)
http://www.teatroverdionline.it/site/home.asp

Teatro della Pergola (Italian website)

http://www.teatrodellapergola.com

Touring Florence will gladly offer you information on what’s available during your visit to Florence.

PARTICIPANTS
Very small groups.
DURATION
5 Hours approx.
SCHEDULES
Daily, by appointment.
FEE
Please inquire.

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Kids and Pinocchio

Kids and Pinocchio

Did you know that the story of Pinocchio was written here in Tuscany?

This specially planned tour offers families with kids visiting Florence and Tuscany the opportunity to take part in a touring experience that is both educative and entertaining to their kids.
We based our tour on the Adventures of Pinocchio, probably one of the most famous stories ever told, and whose writer, Carlo Collodi, is Tuscan and first published the story in 1880 in Florence.

KIDS AND PINOCCHIO | HALF DAY

This tour of the historical center of Florence will take you and your kids on an adventure including story telling, visit to special toy shop and science discovery. It is the most entertaining way to introduce children to city of Florence and its attractions without boring them.

DETAILS
Pick up at your hotel lounge or an established location and special visit to an English and international bookstore for kids to introduce them to the story of Pinocchio. Walk in the medieval part of Florence and visit to a toy store with hand made wood figures and explanation. Walk through Piazza della Signoria and Uffizi Square and tour the Institute and Museum of the History of Science of Florence, where they will explore a wide range of instruments while assisting to live demonstrations and presentations.

Small souvenir gift offered during the tour.

PARTICIPANTS
Families with kids*. Tour suitable for children between 5 and 12 years old.
DURATION
3 to 5 hours.
SCHEDULES
Daily, by appointment.
FEE
Please inquire.

* Kids must be accompanied by at least one of their adult family members all the time during the tour.

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Great Florentine Women

Great Florentine Women

Behind every great city there are often great women.

Florentine women played a great role in the historical and political evolution of Florence and Tuscany. Some of them became major players in the European political scene and others dedicated their life and time in Florence to art, literature and society.

This unique experience, provided by no other company in Florence, is a tribute to the roles of those amazing women.

GREAT FLORENTINE WOMEN | FULL DAY

Your specialized tour guide will lead you in a journey to discover the city through the achievements of its great women. Learn about their origin, life, accomplishments and legacy and visit locations in Florence that will bring the story of these great women to life:

  • Beatrice Portinari (1266-1290), Dante’s loved one, his inspiration and his divine love, she is the subject of the most beautiful Canti of his Divine Comedy and Vita Nuova.
  • Lucrezia Tornabuoni (1425-1482), mother of Lorenzo de’ Medici, the magnificent Lord of Florence and patron of the arts, she is also a sonnet writer and poet.
  • Eleonora da Toledo (1522-1562), Spanish princess, wife of Cosimo I  de’ Medici, Duchess of Florence and first lady. Great administrator of the family property in Tuscany, she acquired Palazzo Pitti, the new magnificent residence of the Family.
  • Laura Battiferri (1523-1589), writer and humanist, she surrounded herself by the greatest minds of her time. She is also the wife of Bartolomeo Ammannati, court architect and sculptor.
  • Caterina de’ Medici (1519-1589), daughter of Lorenzo II de’ Medici, future queen of France by marriage to Henry II, her life is a legacy of greatness and political endurance.
  • Giovanna d’Austria (1547-1578), wife of Francesco I de’ Medici and mother of Maria, and part of the greatest love triangle in Florentine history.
  • Bianca Cappello (1548-1587), noblewoman, mistress and second wife of Francesco I de’ Medici, they died on the same day, possibly poisoned by his brother, Cardinal Ferdinand.
  • Maria de’ Medici (1575-1642), second of the family to be queen of France, she lived in times of extreme political tensions and intrigues. She is the grandmother of the greatest French king of all: Louis XIV, le Roi Soleil.
  • Artemisia Gentileschi (1593–1656), Roman Born from Tuscan parents, she spent 6 years in Florence where she achieved a huge success. Her life is a struggle to establish herself as a great painter in a world dominated by male artists.
  • Anna Maria Luisa de’ Medici (1667-1743), the last of the Medici, her legacy is forever related to Florence and the art in the city by the Family Pact, in which all the treasures of the Medici were given to the city, never to be moved out of it.

Of the numerous great Florentine women, we selected these few inspiring names and dedicated this tour to all the women of the world.

TOUR DETAILS
You’ll begin the tour by meeting with your guide for an introduction to the day ahead, including a presentation and identification of the Great Florentine Women. Then, you’ll walk throughout the historical center of Florence, including a stop at Dante’s House, and finish with a special visit to Palazzo Vecchio with access to the private Medici rooms inside the Palace.

At 1:30pm, there will be a lunch break (not included in fee) and discussion.

The afternoon program is dedicated to the political role of women in the Medici family dynasty, from the raise to power in Florence to having two queens of Florence from the family.

The tour will conclude with evening aperitif (included in fee) and discussion.

PARTICIPANTS
Up to 12 people. Please inquire about larger groups.
DURATION
6 hours approx. + 1 hour lunch break.
SCHEDULES

Daily, starts at 9.00am by appointment. Tour can be split in two half-day tours.
FEE
Please inquire.

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Prato and Pistoia

Prato and Pistoia

Two of the major towns in Tuscany, Pistoia and Prato history is stricktly related to that of Florence and are rich with medieval and renaissance history. The cities still conserve old well kept centers rich in art, monuments, churches, castles and are known for typical products, mainly textile in production in the Prato area and some of the most delicious italian sweets.

PISTOIA


Only 30 km north west of Florence, it is one of the most beautiful and less known cities in Tuscany. It’s history richfully stretches from Etruscan times to modern times. The tour will include the main sights in the well-preserved and charming medieval city inside the old walls. The main square Piazza del Duomo, a unique jewel, were the famous Cathedral of San Zeno is lined with attractive original buildings as the Palazzo del Comune, the Palazzo del Podestà, the Palazzo dei Vescovi and the Baptistry. We will visit inside the outstanding Altar of St James, an exemplar of the silversmith’s craft a real treasure of Gothic and Renaissance art, with 628 figures, the total weighing nearly a ton. Nearby the Sala, site of the viceroy’s house during Lombard rule and in the Communal period became the center for free trade and commerce that it is today, were we will enjoy a market, mostly selling food products. Then why resist the ‘Birignoccoluti‘, in Pistoia dialect, otherwise known as comfits, which are famous in this region, the first record of them in Pistoia dates back to the Middle Ages.

PRATO


Third biggest city in central Italy, after Rome and Florence, it is home to art and culinary treasures. We will admire first the Filippo Lippi frescoes in the Cathedral of Santo Stefano, recently restored and the external pulpit by Donatello, among the most remarkable and beautiful Early Renaissance works of art. We will also stroll our way through the Palazzo Pretorio, built from the 13th century in red bricks and the notable Palazzo Datini, built from 1383 for the merchant Francesco Datini, which housed Pope Alexander V and Louis of Anjou. We will visit Santa Maria delle Carceri, the one Greek cross plan church, inspired to Brunelleschi’s Pazzi Chapel in Florence and commissioned by Lorenzo de’ Medici. We will enjoy, by the end, the visit of the Castello dell’Imperatore, the only castle built by Frederick II of Hohenstaufen in this part of Italy. Of course a must in Prato is the stop in a famous patisserie shop to taste the most typical cookies from Tuscany, the famous ‘cantuccini di Prato’…don’t wait for it!

Integrate your visit to Prato with a special guided visit of the Museo del Tessuto, housing a wide collection of historical fabrics and ethnic costumes. This is the best way to understand and see first hand the evolution of the industry over the centuries.

PARTICIPANTS
Up to 6 people party per small luxury van with pick up in Florence or near by. For bigger parties please inquire.
DURATION
4 hours to Prato or Pistoia. Full day for visit to both cities (approx 7 hours).
SCHEDULES
Daily, starts at 9,30am (inquire for other hours).
FEES
230 Euros flat for 4 hours guided visit.
350 Euros flat for full day guided visit.

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Cortona and Arezzo

Cortona and Arezzo

Cortona is a small town, beautifully set on a hill high above the Val di Chiana plain, famous as the base for some scenes in Roberto Benigni’s film Life is Beautiful and as the setting for the 2003 film Under the Tuscan Sun with Diane Lane. Cortona was one of the 12 ancient Etruscan cities (the Dodecapolis), and it was also important during Roman times. Parts of the Etruscan city wall can still be seen today as the base of the present walls that surround the town.

coming soon …

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Lucca

Lucca

A UNIQUE CITY WITH RENAISSANCE WALLS
Lucca is protected by an amazing wall, small, intimate and full of marvels. An independent Republic that never gave up to the  Florentine domain, it flourished during the centuries mainly because of its banking and trade in silk. In a small squared area, you will discover and see an outstanding number of Palaces and marvels while learn about the historical facts of this old city.

HALF DAY WALKING TOUR


Discover the city surrounded by a 16th century wall that is perfectly conserved and accessible. Your local tour guide will meet at an established location and you will visit the splendid Cathedral of San Martino and walk through the ancient Fillungo Roman street all the way down to the old Amphitheater. The tour will continue with a walk on the Wall and panoramic views of the city and landscape surrounding it.

PARTICIPANTS
Up to 12 people. Please inquire for bigger parties.
DURATION
3 hours.
SCHEDULES
Daily, starts at 9,30am and 3pm (inquire for other hours).
FEE
160 Euros flat.

Transfer from Florence or other locations in Tuscany not included. When provided, you can also visit Pisa and/or Volterra. Please inquire.

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Pisa

Pisa & Leaning Tower

Pisa is a city with old traditions and a center of culture since the 10th century. The city was one of the first four maritime republics in the Italian peninsula: it became a unique and flourishing trade center and one of the major routes of commerce in the Mediterranean. After a long lasting rivalry with Lucca and later Florence, Pisa came under the influence of the Florentine Republic and later part of the Grand Dukedome established by Cosimo I of Medici.

HALF DAY WALKING TOUR
Spend the morning or afternoon in Piazza dei Miracoli and the amazing monuments and landmarks: the 11th century Cathedral and the famous Leaning Tower, the Baptistery, the Monumental Cemetery and San Matteo National Museum. End your half day with a walk along the Arno river that runs all the way through Tuscany.

PARTICIPANTS | Up to 12 people. Please inquire for bigger parties.
DURATION | 3 hours.
SCHEDULES | Daily.
FEE | From 210 Euros.

FULL DAY WALKING TOUR
Visit all the monuments and locations listed on the half day walking tour and Piazza dei Cavalieri with the prestigious University of Pisa (established by Napoleon), the enchanting small gothic Church of Santa Maria della Spina home to one of the most important relics of Christianity. End the tour along the Arno River.

PARTICIPANTS | Up to 12 people. Please inquire for bigger parties.
DURATION | 6-7 hours with lunch break.
SCHEDULES | Daily, starts around 9,30 am (inquire for other hours).
FEE | From 360 Euros.

Transfers from Florence to Pisa or Livorno to Pisa available on request.

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Siena

Siena

THE ESSENCE OF A TUSCAN TOWN.

Siena tours are intended to discover the hidden treasures of the beautiful medieval walled town: breath-taking views, less known churches and their works of art, charming little back streets and the unique atmosphere of traditional shops.

Our walking tours are focused on the stones of Siena and the old underground aqueduct, the green spots and orchards within the walls still surviving since the middle ages, the appalling relics of saints and the hospitality offered to pilgrims from all Europe, the Tower and Castellare home to the Medieval Sienese aristocracy. Siena offers a very large number of stunning museums: the Duomo, Palazzo Pubblico, Museo dell’Opera del Duomo where you can find all the major works of art spanning from the XIII° to the XVI° century together with the less known ones like the Pinacoteca Nazionale, Antico Ospedale Santa Maria della Scala, Museo delle Biccherne and the Museo Archeologico Etrusco.

HALF DAY WALKING TOUR
On this tour, your tour guide will introduce your to this amazing old town barricaded on 3 hills and surrounded by a breath taking view on the surrounding countryside. Siena is a city full of magic: Medieval art, twisted streets, unique views, hidden corners, majestic renaissance history, well kept traditions and stunning local products.


DETAILS
Start at an established meeting point that we will choose according to your necessities (we can help arrange for your transfer to Siena from Florence or other locations in Tuscany) and you will will lead by your tour guide through the old Medieval streets to visit the Duomo, Piazza del Campo with Palazzo Pubblica and Torre del Mangia, Palazzo Salimbeni and other important churches and palaces.


PARTICIPANTS
Up to 12 people. Please inquire about larger groups.
DURATION
3 hours.
SCHEDULES
Daily, starts at 9,30am and 3,00pm (inquire for other hours).
FEE
165 Euros.

FULL DAY WALKING TOUR
Discover Siena in-depth and the surrounding countryside and towns. Integrate your full day tour with a visit to a local museum and a trip to San Gimignano, Montalcino, Pienza or Monteriggioni. Wine tasting and culinary experience available on request. A full day walking tour in Siena allows you also to visit the whole Medieval town and see most of it’s unique monuments like Piazza del Campo and Palazzo Pubblico with Torre del Mangia, Palazzo Salimbeni, the Duomo and other major churches (Santa Maria dei Servi, San Domenico, San Martino), the city Botanic Gardens, the Medicean Fortress …

Plus tour one or two of the following museums and monuments

  • Duomo and Museo dell’Opera
  • Palazzo Pubblico
  • Museo di Santa Maria della Scala

PARTICIPANTS
Up to 12 people. Please inquire about larger groups.
DURATION
6 hours + 1 hour lunch break.
SCHEDULES
Daily, starts at 9,30am (inquire for other hours).
FEES
From 300 Euros.

Transfer and visits to other towns, wine tasting and other services not included. Please inquire.

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Visit the Artisans

Visit the Artisans

MEET SOME OF THE WORLD’S MOST EXCLUSIVE ARTISANS
When it comes to artisans and the “Hand Made” concept, Florence is a city like no other. It is the place where you have the highest number of skilled artisans offering you unique products using techniques and secrets that are centuries old. On a recent CNN travel special, two out of twenty exclusive worldwide artisans were located in Florence: Stefano Bemer (hand made shoes) and Lorenzo Villoresi (fragrances and perfumes).

ARTISANS DAY
Start your day by meeting your personal tour guide and plan the day ahead. Your guide will introduce the historical facts behind the artisan tradition in Florence. This tour is a full day tour as we believe it is the minimum time needed to understand and experience fully the skills of those talented people. Short version, 3 hours half day tour, available upon request.

DETAILS
After inquiring with us and planning your day, this walking tour* and artisans visit will let you enter special workshops and experience them fully. Although some artisans are very protective of their trade, they are also proud to show you their workshops and how they “do it”, and maybe reveal some of their secrets. Those artisans are highly specialized in:

  • Leather and accessories.
  • Silk and other fabrics.
  • Gold, silver and metal works.
  • Marble and semi precious stones setting.
  • Perfumes and fragrances (special experience).
  • Shoes and footwear (special visit).
  • Artistic papers, prints and engravings.
  • Restoration, antiquities and frames.
  • Musical instruments.

After experiencing the workshops, you are free to inquire about their trade and products and acquire what is for sale, your tour guide will be glad to facilitate that and assist you.

PARTICIPANTS
Small group, up to 8 people.
DURATION
7 Hours with 1 hour lunch break
SCHEDULES
Daily. Most artisans close at 7.30 pm and on Sunday and Monday morning. Inquire for detailed information.
FEES
Please inquire.

* For car with driver supplement, please inquire.
International shipping or delivery to your hotel or residence available on request. Non EU citizen can request V.A.T. tax refund on location.

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