Friday, May 18, 2012

Hello Florence...

Florence was so pretty and the sun was shining so beautifully the days we were there.  Soaking in some vitamin D always make me soooo happy!

The best part of Florence is wandering around the city centre and when it got too hot, stop in one of the many cafes for a gelato or two!

Bear in mind a lot of the restaurant tend to have a cover charge ranging from 1.50 - 3 Euros, depending on how touristy the area is.  We actually found a pretty decent restaurant farther away from the tourist area which does not have cover charge.

Anyhow, here are some pictures from Florence.  Please note I don't call myself a professional photographer, just an amateur who loves taking photos of things around me.  Enjoy Florence through my eyes and the eye of my camera ;)

This is just opposite the main train station in Florence

This is the square just in front of Basilica of Santa Maria Novella
Basilica of Santa Maria Novella - a bit disappointed we were not allowed to take any pictures inside =(
There were so many tourists and locals alike.. It's quite interesting to people watch!
The market where you can buy all sort of stuff!
S looking so..... pensive?!?
Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore

Climbing up the stairs in the Basilica.. Lots of steps and they were narrow!

You'll get the inside of the dome.. Gorgeous art!

Continue climbing up more steps - the asian lady got a big told off by the fiery Italian guy for coming down the stairs when he yelled "STOP" to let us climb up the stairs instead
and you'll be rewarded with a 360 degree view of Florence...
Absolutely breathtaking.. As far as the eyes can see..  That's the Giotto's Campanile (Bell Tower) which we climbed later on

From the inside looking out.. It was so hot and stuffy inside but the cool breeze coming in from these little windows are a heaven sent!
More winding steps!

Interior of the Cathedral
Prayer candles... Mesmerizing aren't they?
Crypt - just under the cathedral
We climbed up Giotto's Campanile where we got a closer look of the dome!

Looking at the dome from further up the bell tower
From the Giotto's Campanile, we had another sweeping view of Florence city
Pizzas!!  All ready for the hungry tourists..  in the many many cafes around!
Mountains of gelatos with all sorts of flavours... I felt like I had gone to heaven!
3 in one - The cathedral, the baptistry and the Giotto's Campanile...
Florence Baptistry..  Nothing much to look at from the outside...
The baptistry is quite small in the inside, but don't forget to look up..  The mosaic ceiling is quite eye-catching
Florence Baptistry
Shopping street of Florence 

Palazzo Vecchio is the town hall of Florence.   This massive Romanesque crenellated fortress-palace is among the most impressive town halls of Tuscany
Statues around Piazza della Signoria - this is a public gathering place which was very overcrowded 
A replica of the statue of David standing just outside of the Town Hall

Hercules & Cacus is standing to the right, while the replica of David stood to the left of the entrance to the town hall