Florence – Palazzo Vecchio & Tuscan Wine Tour

Hi friends, welcome back to the final post of our time in Florence. It was downpouring at this point, but we had some time to kill before our wine tour so we headed to Piazza della Signoria to see Palazzo Vecchio. This fortress looking building was the town hall in renaissance times. In 1540, Duke Cosimo I de’ Medici I turned the building into his luxurious palace and hired Michelangelo and Donatello to beautify the place. Cosimo later bought Pitti Palace and moved the royal residence there. To make his commute easier, he commissioned the construction of the Vasari corridor, the walkway from the Uffizi Gallery over the Ponte Vecchio, and up to Pitti Palace. (pictures in this post are taken over multiple days)

Palazzo Vecchio is currently a Town Hall and museum to see Cosimo’s apartments. We didn’t have extra time for the museum, but I’d go through if we’re ever back in Florence. The courtyard is free to visit and everyone seemed to have the same idea as us to avoid the rain.

Until 1873 the original David statue stood here outside Palazzo Vecchio.

The Loggia dei Lanzi was once a forum but is now a sculpture gallery. Some notable pieces include The Rape of the Sabine Women by Giambologna and Perseus by Cellini. Perseus is possibly the most famous piece in the gallery depicting Perseus with Medusa’s decapitated head. The artist put his name across the sash and even included a self-portrait on the back proving he was not the humblest.

You can’t miss the Fountain of Neptune in Piazza della Signoria.

I feel like it would be sacrilegious to go to Florence without visiting some wineries, so I booked this half-day Tuscan wine tour through Viator. Jon and I aren’t big wine connoisseurs, but we were looking forward to the relaxing afternoon. We were a little nervous because of the downpour earlier, but the sun came out as we made our way to the bus. There were 24 people in the group and we enjoyed meeting new people and trying wine from the Chianti region.

At both wineries we got to have four tastings of wine paired with some cheese, bread, and olive oil. We had such a great afternoon in the countryside. The tour was a bit touristy and not as informative as I thought it’d be, but it was a lot of fun and the wine tasted great!

Our last morning in Florence was beautiful and we took one last stroll around town before we had to leave. I really loved Florence and wish we had one more day there to try more of the restaurants, take a cooking class, or visit the Bargello Museum and Palazzo Vechhio. Florence wasn’t on our original itinerary, we were going to Ischia instead, but I’m so glad we changed it up and went to Florence. I didn’t really have many expectations of Florence, but I really loved the city and am glad we started our trip in such a charming place.

Posts in this series:


32 thoughts on “Florence – Palazzo Vecchio & Tuscan Wine Tour

  1. I forgot about Cellini’s “self-portrait” on the back of the Perseus sculpture. Like Michelangelo, he had a bit of a twisted personality. I also can’t get over the (outside) David statue; I mean, why make another one, unless this one a “throwaway” because it wasn’t good enough? Finally, the wine tour reminds me of an “evening of Irish music” we signed up for in Dublin. The music was good but everything about it felt tourist-trap. Pretty sure any downtown pub with live music would’ve been a better, less expensive option.

    1. I can’t find a good answer except that is was a symbol of defiance against the Medici family perhaps. Some tours can be very gimmicky, but it can be nice not to worry about transportation or the details and just show up for a night/afternoon.

  2. You had me at Tuscan Wine Tour. A great way to finish your time in Florence. So glad the sun came out. Good Italian wine and food are always a bonus. That see of umbrellas tells a story. Just because it is raining, does not mean you stay in your hotel room. Thanks for showing me some of what we missed in Florence Lyssy. Allan

    1. It is nice to have all the wine without any of the hangover! We got pretty lucky with weather, I was afraid it would rain most of the trip, but it was only two days. I’d prefer that over the 98* temps there right now! Hopefully soon I can relive my Florence memories through your blog 🙂

  3. Oh, the art! I loved seeing the sculptures and hearing the history of the palazzo, Lyssy. The wine tour sounds fun, and the vineyards and wineries look amazing. Florence would be second on my list for a tour of Italy. Thank you for sharing.

    1. It was a great final day! The wine tour was so relaxing and the vineyards were stunning. I’m glad the sun came out for us. Hope you get to Florence soon!

    1. It really did look pretty in the rain with all the colorful umbrellas. All the wine and none of the hangover is a perfect way to spend an afternoon 🙂

  4. Too bad about the rain but everything still looks so beautiful! I love all that old world architecture and all the art and sculptures everywhere; even the winery looks amazing and I don’t drink wine! LOL

    1. The rain did add a pretty touch to the city, even the umbrellas were pretty colors. The winery was a perfect way to end our time in Florence, it was so beautiful!

  5. Gorgeous pictures along with your fine writing. Glad you enjoyed your trip. By the way, one of the pictures with all those colorful umbrellas is extra wonderful. Thanks for sharing

    1. Thank you! We had such a great time in Florence. I thought the umbrellas added a nice touch of color 🙂

  6. All your posts on Florence show the magnificence of this city, which has so much to offer to visitors. The Loggia dei Lanzi alone, open to all, boasts several masterpieces that would make a collection’s pride and joy. I can’t wait to return to Florence and immerse myself in its wonderful sights again.

    1. It is such a magnificent city! It’s amazing those sculptures are just out in the open and free to visit. I can’t wait to read about your time in Florence and relive all my good memories 🙂

  7. I recall seeing those statues outdoors, including the replica of the statue of David. It’s a shame the downpour ruined a part of your time in Florence, but it luckily cleared up for a gorgeous time at the vineyards! I love wine and wine-tasting, and it’s my dream to return to Tuscany to go wine tasting! Glad you made the most of it out of your honeymoon trip; Florence is the perfect place for that!

    1. Luckily in a city there’s a lot to do in a downpour, but I’m glad it cleared up before our tour. I think if I went back I’d stay in Tuscany somewhere to have a more authentic wine tasting experience, but we still had a lot of fun. Hope you make it to a wine tasting soon 🙂

    1. Thank you! It was the perfect, relaxing way to end the trip. I’m glad the weather cooperated.

  8. Spending an afternoon in that lovely countryside while tasting wine sounds like a lovely experience. I would also be a bit disappointed with the lack of information. Florence is a beautiful city made for art lovers. Love the shot of the piazza covered in colourful umbrellas.

  9. We’d accidentally visited the Galleria dell’Accademia on our trip to Florence. In our defense, not one but TWO people pointed at it and told us that the statue of David was there 🤦‍♀️
    In any case, it was a nice museum and had some of the most spectacular ceilings I’ve ever seen!

    Wish we’d had time to do a trip over to the vineyards!

  10. Looks like a fun ending to your time in Florence! Also, I know this isn’t the point of your post at all, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many umbrellas in one place in my entire life 😂

    1. Right 😂 and all the different colors were quite impressive! I’m usually a hater of umbrellas but they actually looked cool for my pics.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.