For art lovers, Florence is Mecca. Only Paris and Rome could even compete. The streets are full of museums that are full of works by all the great masters. Among many others, all of the Ninja Turtles are well-represented: Leonardo, Raphael, Michelangelo, and Donatello. I kept expecting to see something by Splinter or Shredder or Krang, but no dice. (Sorry, couldn’t help it.)
And don’t forget the incomparable Statue of David. I was skeptical that seeing it in person would be really much different than seeing pictures, but it was so different. I’ve seen a lot of art in my travels but I was still blown away and wanted to stare for hours. And no, it’s not just because it’s a naked dude.
The city itself is a work of art. Renaissance palaces. The uniquely Florentine cathedral and matching churches scattered around. Lovely piazzas lined with statuary and full of street artists. Distinctive bridges. The majestic Boboli Gardens. There just aren’t enough superlatives in the English language.
Like Venice, Florence is not about the nightlife. Also like Venice, I ran across a vibrant young expat and student subculture for those in that demographic. But unlike Venice, there are one or two gay bars and two saunas. There wasn’t a lot going on at them while I was there, but they exist.
Florence is a jewel. I could have spent weeks taking it all in.
Next stop: Rome.