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Friday Fun Meets Postcards From Italy: Another Blog Mash-up: Going UP?

Postcards from Italy: Firenze, Part 2

Dear friends,

We're still here, in Florence, birthplace of the Renaissance and a city well-known for its art and architecture.

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Now, back when we were in Rome, there were a lot of tourists, but not THRONGS of tourists in any one place.  In retrospect, I think this is because there are so many things to see in Rome . . . but they're all spread out . . . so people don't get terribly congested.

In Florence, though . . . it's another story!  There is MUCH to see in Florence, and it's all crammed together in a very small area.  So crowds of tourists are all trying to see the same things -- all in the same place.  There are throngs EVERYwhere in Florence!  Here's a typical street scene, just across the Ponte Vecchio bridge.  (See what I mean?)

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My sister and I took to calling it "RenaissanceLand" -- because it reminded us of Disney Land (like . . . right before the parades).  There were always big crowds of tourists at all the major sights.  It was overwhelming and exhausting, just getting around.

But totally worth it!

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We took a small group walking tour with a wonderful guide on our second day in Florence.  It was delightful!  She showed us all the best things in Florence, shared interesting stories, and - best of all - knew all the shortcuts!

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Our tour began in the Piazza Della Repubblica, where an antique carousel is a popular attraction!
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I took this photo for my knitting friends. This building had been the Renaissance home of the Wool Guild!
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Some of the building "hardware" was really intriguing!  I loved this . . . a fire-breathing dragon.
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Although we didn't partake, we did keep hearing about the famous Florentine steak!
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These wine bars were everywhere in the streets of Florence! See the little rack to the right of the doorway? That's where you can set your wineglass while you socialize out in the streets with your friends!
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The best gelato in Florence -- hazelnut and pistachio!

In Florence, though, it really is all about the art!  My favorites . . . 

David (the real one this time. . . which is so much more awesome than you imagine it will be. . . ).

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The Baptistry doors (and especially the Gates of Paradise).

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And the Duomo -- the Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral.  So beautiful and so impressive!

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But now, my friends, we have wine to drink and pizza to eat!  (For soon we head to Venice. . . )

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Ciao, bella!

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