Introduction and Information, FlorenceHOME | Destinations | Florence
The Beautiful City of Florence, Italy
Introduction and Information
A Brief Introduction to Florence, Italy
Florence is the fifth largest city in Italy and is situated in the pleasant valley of the River Arno. It lies about 150 miles north-west of Rome It is one of the greatest artistic centres of the world and has been ever since the beginning of the great revival of learning and art called the Renaissance in the 14th-century. Florence was the home of the architect Brunelleschi who invented the idea of perspective, of the sculptor Donatello, the painters Giotto, Masaccio and Fra Filippo Lippi and his pupil Botticelli, and of those artists of tremendous genius Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo. Dante, one of the world's greatest writers, and the great astronomer Galileo also lived in Florence.
Many artists were encouraged to work for the Medici family of bankers and merchants who helped Florence become rich and important. The Medici family ruled Florence for many years. The Florentine artists did not work at one art only - Andrea del Verrocchio, who was the teacher of Leonardo da Vinci was a goldsmith, painter and sculptor, and Michelangelo was a painter, sculptor, architect and poet. The black and white marble baptistery where nearly all the children were christened stands in the middle of Florence. Opposite this is the Duomo (House of God), or cathedral, with its magnificent dome designed by Brunelleschi. Beside the cathedral is the great Campanile (a bell tower) built in red, green and white marble by Giotto who painted, among many other pictures, the portrait of his fellow citizen Dante.
The skill of the Florentine craftsmen still survives and the shops are full of beautiful examples of metalwork, leather and embroidery. The art galleries are among the finest in the world and include the Uffizi, the Pitti Palace and the Bargello museum of sculpture.
City breaks to Florence mean finding beautiful Renaissance sculptures lining the streets of the Centro Storico, dining on the finest Italian and international cuisine and shopping for cutting-edge fashion. Explore Florence with a great value city break or weekend package from the best travel agencies and tour operators online. Surrounded by the rolling Tuscany hills, the beautiful and vibrant Renaissance city of Florence is home to a treasure trove of artistic delights, created by some of the great masters, including Michelangelo's statue 'David'.