The top things to do in Florence in 2017 include new and revamped museums, old palaces to explore, and plenty of surprises for food and fashion lovers.
Florence is a city of timeless beauty and iconic sights, but never seems to take itself for granted. Last year was a busy and thrilling year for the city. The release of the Medici series and Ron Howard’s “Inferno” seems to have sparked new interest in the city’s history and sights.
Top things to do in Florence in 2017 for art enthsiasts
Uffizi Gallery – The big news at the Uffizi Gallery are the Botticelli rooms. The recent renovations has modernised the space, with new lighting making it easier to appreciate masterpieces like “Birth of Venus“ and “Allegory of Spring”. Visitors can also his lesser known works, like “Pallas and the Centaur” and a huge fresco depicting a graceful Annunciation.
The “Adoration of the Magi” by Leonardo is back at the Uffizi after a long restoration, and it’s looking more enchanting than ever.
The Duomo – climbing the Duomo is a must-do in Florence. Remember that it is mandatory to book, and with the combined ticket you can also see the Baptistry, the Bell tower and the Opera Duomo Museum. It’s a pleasure visiting this new-look museum. Highlights include a model of part of the Duomo’s facade and a gallery entirely devoted to Brunelleschi’s Dome.
The Innocenti Museum is the new museum on the block. Here you’ll be introduced to some less grand but equally interesting stories about Florence. The innocenti (or ‘nocentini’) were the orphans left at this institution that opened its doors in 1445 in Piazza SS. Annunziata (the edifice of which is still under renovation at the time of writing). This interactive museum tells the stories of these infants and of the institution that took care of them. One floor is dedicated to an art exhibition. Look out for the stunning “Adoration of the Magi” by Ghirlandaio -you’ll spot some innocenti in the painting.
The church of Santo Spirito has open its beautiful cloister to visitors in April 2017. In the same church the wooden crucifix by Michelangelo can be better appreciated thanks to the new layout of the sacristy.
Contemporary art – If you’re in search of something more contemporary, head to Palazzo Strozzi. From 10th March to 23rd July, it will host the exhibition “Electronic Renaissance” by Bill Viola. It’s a chance to immerse yourself in the space, music and sounds of this video artist. His highly symbolic work explores the interaction between humanity and the forces of nature.
In search of the Medici secrets
Palazzo Vecchio – Since the release of the film “Inferno” and the “Medici: Masters of Florence” series, the Palazzo Vecchio in Piazza Signoria has been increasingly under the spotlight. A tour of the palace is one the top things to do in Florence in 2017. It’s a magnificent sight from the outside and even more from the inside. Fascinating tours unveil the secrets of the palace and the turbulent history of this Florentine dynasty.
Medici dynasty show – a theatre performance in English dedicated to the history of the Medici family who ruled over Florence for three centuries. Staged in a Baroque church in the centre of Florence it delves into Florentine history in a very engaging way.
Top things to do in Florence in 2017 for fashion fans
Florence never goes out of fashion. And its timeless streets are a real haven for shoppers. From the legendary brands such as Gucci, Roberto Cavalli and Ferragamo to the artisan leather shops in San Lorenzo or Santa Croce, you’ll be spoilt for choice.
To get some inspiration this year a photo exhibition held in the Pitti Palace “Fashion in Florence” celebrates the history of fashion in Florence from the 20’s to the 70’s. (Until the 7th March)
There’s an eclectic exhibition at the Ferragamo Museum in Piazza Santa Trinita which explores the ties between art and fashion, with pieces from Jean Cocteau to Issey Miyake. (Ends 7th April)
The sales are on until the end of February and again in the Summer months in July and August. To round off the shopping experience, have a drink at the Café Giacosa, owned by Roberto Cavalli, a hot spot for fashion devotees. It’s in Via della Spada, 10red.
If you’re planning a trip to Tuscany this year, here’s some suggestions of the best things to do in Tuscany in 2017.
If you’re interested in Dante Alighieri, the most famous of Florence’s son, you can follow in his footsteps in Florence with our Dante itinerary.