Monday, July 13, 2009

Adventures in Florence


I thought by now most everyone would be tired of my travelog but I got such nice comments on my Adventures in Venice post....You like me, really like me.......that I thought for the next two Mondays I'd continue posting photos from other cities visited in Italy.

So today class we are going to talk about Florence. Of all the cities I have visited in Italy, I liked Florence the best and would opt to return there first. It's a very easy city to get around, not confusing like Rome and Venice. Located in the region of Tuscany, Florence is on the Arno River and is thought of as the heart of the Renaissance. The architecture is beautiful and there are so many galleries and museums I don't think you could ever see them all.






The Arno River has six bridges, the oldest of which is the Ponte Vecchio, shown above. Originally lined with fishmongers, butchers and tanners, the shops were later occupied by goldsmiths and jewelers. Anyone who knows me can tell you I've been in a few jewelry stores in my life. Well, I have NEVER seen as much jewelry as I did in these shops on the Ponte Vecchio. These little shuttered shops you see above hold some of the most amazing displays I have ever seen.

The current bridge was rebuilt after a flood in 1345. During World War II it was the only bridge across the Arno that the fleeing Germans did not destroy. On November 4, 1966, the bridge miraculously withstood a tremendous flood of the Arno which damaged many buildings.



This is the monument to Benvenuto Cellini, the most famous Florentine goldsmith. When I was there in 2005 the fences around the Cellini Monument were full of padlocks with indelible writings, hung up by lovers who believe that it is a symbol of an indissoluble relationship; the keys to these padlocks are then symbolically thrown into the Arno River, where nobody can ever retrieve them. When I returned in 2007, all the padlocks were gone and there was a sign saying anyone caught attaching a padlock to the fence would be fined.

Most photos of the skyline of Florence include Il Duomo an incredibly beautiful cathedral that is covered in red, white and green marble. Begun in 1296 and finally consecreated in 1436 it has an enourmous octagonal dome that was the largest in the world when it was built.



An amazing view that pops into sight as you turn a corner in the city.

The interior of the Filippo Brunelleschi's dome.

The color and detail of the marble on the Duomo are exquisite.

Here's my real Adventure in Florence, the handsome Italian I brought home with me


28 comments:

New England Girl said...

these photos are GORGEOUS! I'm glad you decided to continue sharing them with all of us. I would be upset if you stopped. :)

How sad that they removed all of the padlocks and forbid the action. It seems like such a sweet and endearing thing to do. Do you know why they became so sour against the idea?

Hope you're having a wonderful Monday. :)

JOE TODD said...

Thanks for posting I always enjoy visiting different parts of the world

Sandy said...

Joe, thanks for visiting and commenting.

Just Breathe said...

The pictures are so beautiful. I do need to leave the US and see these places.

June Freaking Cleaver said...

I'm not a world traveler, but your pictures make me want to pack a bag and throw caution to the wind.

The first picture from Florence speaks to me.

K said...

Beautiful photos.

Thanks for sharing.

Tammy Howard said...

Beautiful pics. Why am I left with a yearning for gold? And travel? And handsome Italian men?

Shauna said...

I really enjoyed reading your post today. I could look at the pictures all day and just day dream. Thanks so much for sharing Sandy!

Fragrant Liar said...

Beautiful pictures. I can't wait to go (one of these days). Those shops alongside the bridge were interesting. Are they out of space over there?

And kudos on the cute Eye-talian stallion you brought home with you. ;-)

Sandy said...

K, Thanks for stopping by...

Just Breathe, there's lots of wonderful places to visit in the US, too.

Millennium Housewife said...

Loved the one of the narrow street, really interesting perspective.

Sandy said...

Millennium Houswife, thanks for stopping by! There are so many streets like that in Italy...you're walking along, turn a corner and some amazing view comes in to sight. Glad you appreciated it.

Ginger said...

I HAVE to go back! (sadface) You're seriously giving me the travel bug. I don't care what anyone says. It's contageous!

Sandy said...

Ginger, no argument here! I have given it to myself going through these photos for my posts recently. I have so enjoyed reliving some of those days. Makes me really want to get on a plane.

Kathy B! said...

This is gorgeous, just gorgeous. Next time you go somewhere give me a head's up. I'm cramming myself into your suitcase. Don't worry. I don't snore :)

Lauren said...

Your photos are amazing. They look like they could be post cards.

I wonder how the bridge was built to have survived such a flood... and why they do not use construction like that any more. Well, I guess they may, but not as much as they should.

_

Thanks for stopping by my place...

~SITSta~

dadshouse said...

Beautiful pics! I love Italy - been there four times. I only visited Florence once, though, and we cut our stay there short because all the museum workers went on strike!!!!! :-) You're inspiring me to go back.

Midlife Jobhunter said...

Lovely photos. I enjoyed Florence. Especially the back end of David in the Academie. My husband finally found me back there asking what I might be looking at so ernestly. I sighed as I walked away, but did find that end on a post card in the gift shop.

Oh, I liked the rest of the city and all its art also.

Sandy said...

dadshouse.....Florence has such incredible art I want to go back to see more of that. Your comment reminds me of my last visit to Rome...came out of the train station and the cabs were on strike! Had to walk to our hotel not really knowing where it was! You gotta love the Italians. The strike was over the next day.

Lauren---good question about the bridge construction. I don't know what the secret it but we could use some of the engineering in the States!

Stacy said...

I love the pics...I wanna go! Your blog is very fun.

Sandy said...

Stacy, thanks! I hope you get to see Florence soon.

Unknown Mami said...

Great photos and kudos on the "souvenir" got to bring back.

bettyl said...

Those are such wonderful photos! And, I'm so glad you shared them since I doubt I will ever see Florence in person.

Brenda said...

Those are great pictures, gives me a good feeling for the place. I hope I make it to Florence one day!

dddiva said...

What a great post- Italy is on the top of my must go to someday list. Gorgeous pics.

Debbie in Nashville said...

Sandy- these photos are wonderful! I love Florence and yes I got lost in Rome and Venice!

I spent a semester in college studying in Poland and as part of one of our classes they took up to Italy for a week. It was amazing and Florence was my favorite city. I even remember one of the dinners I had, it was so good. How crazy is that?

Looks like you had a wonderful time with your handsome Italian!

(glad you linked these up at WOW)

Blissed-Out Grandma said...

Florence is one of my favorite cities in the world. Haven't been there for ages, but it 's such an old city that its charms endure.

criticalcrass said...

i enjoyed this. thanks for posting. :]

 

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