8. Florence by Land & Water: Walking Tour and Arno river E-Boat
Morning Tour: Your discovery will start with the ancient Medici Family District. Along the heart of Florence, you will also walk along the same narrow streets where the Medici' walked, touching the stones used to build their residences and you will see the same monuments that they were used to see every day: the first example of building is Palazzo Medici Riccardi, their first residence in San Lorenzo district, where you can find as well their Church and mausoleum-Medici Chapels. A few steps away you will reach then the amazing complex of monuments: the Cathedral with its incredible Brunelleschi dome, the Baptistery of San Giovanni and the elegant Giotto bell tower. The walk continues along lively Via Calzaioli in the heart of the city, where you can admire the imposing and singular Orsanmichele Church, a masterpiece of Florentine gothic art, then we reach the bustling Mercato della Paglia (Straw Market): don’t forget to rub the nose of the famous "porcellino" (pig) and toss a coin into the fountain to bring you good luck! Finally in Piazza Signoria, one of the most beautiful squares in the world and the political centre of the city. Here you can admire the beautiful Fountain of Neptune with the marvelous and imposing marble statue by Ammannati and then, looking around, the sculptural masterpieces of the Loggia dei Lanzi, including the Cellini’s Perseus and the Gianbologna’s Rape of the Sabines. Dominating all this is the majestic Palazzo Vecchio with its crenelated Arnolfo tower, one of the most famous symbols of Florence. Continuing on, you can admire the romantic, picturesque Ponte Vecchio, the oldest bridge in Florence, with its renowned jewelery shops. During the afternoon, bridges, churches, towers, gardens and palaces slide in front of your eyes like in a beautiful film while the e-boat silently slip zero-emission on the water, giving you the opportunity to admire the city of the Renaissance from a privileged and inedited point of view: ci sono places and glimpses of rare beauty visible only from the river! Starting from Ponte alle Grazie, this beautiful electric boat in natural wood will take you on a fascinating journey into the history and art of the city thanks to the commentary of an audio-guide. Stories, anecdotes and secrets related to the river and the noble families whose magnificent palaces are reflected in the water. And the possibility of taking surprising and unusual photos of magnificent architectures such as those of the Uffizi Gallery and the Vasari Corridor, but also to the well-kept and unexpected garden on the river of the historic Rowing Association, the oarsmen who you will happen to greet as they ply the river with their slender and colorful boats. And finally the evocative passage under the ancient bridges that connect the two parts of the city: the elegant Ponte Santa Trinita adorned with statues and the iconic and romantic Ponte Vecchio with its glittering jewelery.