This week I’m excited to have Jenna Francisco share her favorite photos of Florence. Jenna is a freelance travel writer who lives in California and runs This Is My Happiness, a blog about culture, art, and slow travel. While we’ve had several “Show and Tell” on this city, they have each allowed us to see Florence from differing points of view. And that’s the reason I love this series (and hope you do too).
Here are some fantastic photos of Florence seen through Jenna’s lens.
6 Favorite Photos from Florence
Florence is the first place that I felt a connection to abroad. After five visits (the first at the young age of sixteen), one study abroad course there about the Italian Renaissance, and a longtime interest in Italian art history, Florence is still my favorite city.
Its combination of old and new and the city’s fascinating history leave me endlessly curious about Florence. On my last visit, I looked beyond the Renaissance and the main sites and tried to learn more about the city—the artisans, lesser-known places, and the its contemporary culture. Of the hundreds of photos I took, these were some of my favorites.
1. The Ponte Vecchio: This iconic symbol of Florence is a place I return to over and over at different times of day, watching the light change from morning haze to the evening glow of sunset and lights reflected on the water at night. Just next to the bridge is the home of the Canottieri, the Florence rowing club, making it easy to see rowers passing under the bridge.
2. The Oltrarno: This neighborhood across the Arno River from Florence’s historic center is full of artisan workshops, unique restaurants, and beautiful shops. It’s the place to witness life of local Florentines, whether on their way to work in the morning, buying produce at the local market, or taking an evening walk as this woman in the red coat was doing.
3. Florentines: I prefer traveling in the off-season, and Florence is certainly a place that is better experienced then. In the winter, Florence is much less crowded with tourists, giving the local residents more space to enjoy their city. Here a man naps in front of one of the city’s finest churches, Santa Maria Novella. The reformed piazza includes these modern benches and the name of the church’s Early Renaissance architect, Alberti.
4. The light: People always talk about the beautiful light in Tuscany, and for good reason. Besides the shimmering light of early morning and the dynamic colors of sunset, I was in wonder of “the Blue Hour,” a time of day just after sunset in autumn when the sky turns a deep blue. Here it is with one of the city’s most memorable landmarks, the Palazzo Vecchio.
5. Getting off the beaten path: I love finding lesser-known places in Florence. The last time I visited the Bardini Gardens, it was a late afternoon in November, and I was the only visitor in the gardens. Here is a view of the walk from the Boboli Gardens to the Bardini down a quiet, walled street.
6. The Uffizi: While Florence has many secrets for visitors to discover, the beauty of its main sights can hardly be ignored. One of the city’s busiest places is outside the Uffizi Gallery. This view is looking toward the Arno River and the Lungarno, or the avenue along the river, and the 19th-century buildings that line the other side of the river.