Walk to San Miniato al Monte for the Best Views of Florence
Most people who visit Florence know that walking to Piazzale Michelangelo is a must. However, fewer people know that walking a little higher to the old church of San Miniato al Monte is an even better experience. Amble down the Arno River to Viale G. Poggi, up the green pathways to Piazzale Michelangelo, then continue on until you reach the busy square with a bronze cast of Michelangelo's David at its center. This church facing the square is one of the oldest in the area, a beautiful 12th-century example of Romanesque architecture. Note, especially, the mosaics on the facade and, inside, above the altar; the floor decorations are also worth a look. There is also a small shop next to the church, run by monks. Take in the views from the outside, stroll the grounds, and see the old cemetery. Entrance to the church is free, and if you're lucky, you might even hear the monks singing.
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Florence by Night
Most people read in one guidebook or another to head across the river and make the trek up the hill to the San Miniato al Monte area or Piazza Michelangelo for some breathtaking views of Florence. What many people will not do is make that trek at night. If you do you'll be rewarded with an absolutely magical view of the city - something right out of storybook. The quiet is meditative and we would have stayed up there all night if we could have. For a perfect night in Florence - grab some Aperitivo and cocktails and burn off the calories by walking up the hill. You won't be disappointed!