From Sunrise to Sunset

Family, friends, & travelers alike,

You haven’t seen anything until you’ve experienced the city of Florence from sun up, sun down. It is truly magic, from the moment the sun’s light touches the edge of the horizon, casting a blueish, pinkish glow, to the spellbinding fiery orange of the sunset. Nighttime doesn’t fall here until past 9pm, and the city officially goes to “sleep” much later than that. It’s the experience of walking around the streets with nothing but a map, a few Euros, and a sense of adventure. That’s how you explore the winding, twisting, turning streets of Firenze, each leading into different plaza with its own distinct quality, its own set of ristorantes and upbeat night bars, its own unique gathering of people. Firenze is a community of beautiful individuals who set the tone of this lively city: store-owners greeting you with a smile and an offer to help in broken English; European models strutting the cobblestone streets; runners expertly weaving their way through traffic; & flocks of teenagers and study abroad kids wandering the alleyways with their beers in hand. It is a cultural center filled with two main things: art and tourists, everywhere. After all, it’s one of the most visited cities in Europe. Art in Firenze ranges from giant statues by famous Renaissance sculptors like Michaelangelo, to grandiose duomos (domes) lining the ceilings of religious centers, to simple graffiti etched onto some of the walls. And there’s more. Aside from its numerous churches & museums, the city itself is a piece of artwork, ready to be navigated and explored. It’s something a tour guide can’t really tell you, but you have to wander and experience for yourself.

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Firenze’s Popoli Gardens

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Looks like these Italians are big fans of #TeamBrasil!

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stumbled into the most quaint of bookstores

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Piazza Pitti
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The Old Bridge
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lovers’ wall
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For dinner, I stopped by Gustapizza on Via Maggio, across the Arno & away from all of the tourists, as recommended by my friend Caroline who studied abroad here in Florence. BEST DECISION EVER. The ingredients are all fresh, & you watch the pizza made right in front of you & baked inside a stone-fire oven. The staff are welcoming and friendly, not to mention talkative! I had a great conversation with the cashier/manager while waiting for my order, and he put in something special just for me, because I was “molto bella” (very beautiful) 🙂 But seriously, by far, best pizza i’ve EVER had – highly recommend!

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My friend Roberto, who put in a special order of Gusta’s best pizza just for me!
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ecstatic/in love the minute i opened the box <3
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The Famous Gustapizza: made with fresh cherry tomatoes, arugula, mozzarella & ricotta cheese.
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Florence, you have a pizza my heart. (one more shot because i’m seriously in love with it)
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Sunset in Firenze.
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Ate my heart-pizza sitting on the side of the bridge along the Arno River, surrounded by couples and groups of travelers, all of us watching the sunset & enjoying the view. Complete bliss.
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A gondola tour of Firenze… didn’t even know they had gondola rides here!

 

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Street musician playing an accordion along one of the main shopping streets. I ended up giving him a small piece of my pizza in exchange for his beautiful music, which he was very grateful for!
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stumbled upon the Piazza della Repubblica, an open area lit up with musicians, dancers, vendors, even a carousel! Lots of people were strolling about the square enjoying the beautiful cool weather and the music.

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Street musician playing along to couples dancing

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Window displays

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this was actually gross lol
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Macaron store in Italy! The owner claims Italy made the macaron first…. I doubt it haha.
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Among the numerous weird things I saw in Firenze, this overpriced condom vending machine tops the cake.
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What better way to finish an epic day than with Florentine gelato?

*blissful sigh*  I’ll be back for you, Florence. I wish we didn’t have to leave; three nights is nearly not enough. Leaving my heart here forever.

With love,
-A

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3 thoughts on “From Sunrise to Sunset

  1. I ❤️ Firenze! You will be our tour guide when your Mom, Auntie Ellen, Lauren and I visit Italy some day. Truly great pictures, Ally. They look like postcards.

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