Side Street Style: Dreaming of Florence & 5 reasons I want to visit

Side Street Style

Family travel and lifestyle blog


Dreaming of Florence & 5 reasons I want to visit

Italian landscape

Italy is one of those magical places that offers such variety that even if you have visited one city you long to discover more. I have been lucky enough to spend some time in Milan, Venice and Rimini before having children but I have always been left longing to go back. John and I have been discussing a possible road trip down to Italy near the end of summer and I have been putting together a few places I really want to see such as the famous Lakes and eating pizza in Naples but one city that really stands out to me and also features in one of my favourite travel inspired films (Eat, pray, Love) is Florence. Everything about this romantic, historical and artistic city makes me want to jump on a plane right now and be there in the heart of it all.

As you may already know as much as I like to throw caution to the wind every now and then I also really like to plan our trips and I am certainly the planner in our house and love nothing better than staring at a map all day working out our routes and what we want to see. I feel if your travelling with children especially planing really does make it less stressful and doing the research before hand saves time when you are there. So I have put together 5 things I would love to do and see in Florence.


1. I think it goes without saying that Climbing the Duomo is one of the must do things, especially as this impressive Cathedral with it's massive dome is what makes Florence skyline so famous. Its 463 steps take you to the highest point in central Florence and offer up a spectacular view, well worth being a little out ofd puff for.

2.  Eat Al Fresco in Italian style - being a nation that is passionate about it's food, taking it slow and living la dolce vita, I would certainly embrace this relaxed way of living and enjoying each bite of authentic pasta, pizza, wine and canap├ęs. Florence has an abundance of cafes and restaurants that spill out onto the old cobbled streets where you can take your time over a lazy afternoon bite and savouring the lifestyle and atmosphere around you.

Italian food

3. Taking in David - even when I was very small my father made sure we would visit art galleries and history museums on our travels, he felt this was very important and it's something that I actually really enjoyed. Seeing a masterpiece close up is really quiet breathtaking so seeing Michelangelo's 500 year old marble sculpture that is David, standing seventeen feet tall is something I would have to do.

4. Wake up to a view - Florence is a truly magnificent place and there for staying somewhere a little special is a must. I want to stay in somewhere that encapsulates the Italian lifestyle, the romanticism of Florence and touches of the Renaissance era as well as having a view you want to wake up too. I love the look of the very stylish and chic family rooms at Hotel Brunelleschi, a hotel in Florence which have views of the Duomo and across the city. They also have some stunning suites and two restaurants, both of which cater for vegetarians and vegans which is important to myself. The building itself is also steeped in history and one part is over 1500 years old, it is as spectacular and the city it lies in.

Hotel in Florence

5. Explore by Bike - I have been told that one of the best ways to see Florence is on one of the many bike paths that wind their way through some of the most science neighbourhoods. There are plenty of places to hire bikes in the city including right outside the Santa Maria Novella train station and this is something that is also fun and accessible for families. You can take your time and get lost in the side streets, making stops every now and then for a coffee and pastry or head to one of the green spaces and relax with a glass of wine.

Cycling in Florence

As we head into summer and warmer days the more my mind drifts to the South and the relaxed culture found in Italy and the South of France. I visited Venice in the spring and found that very busy and would love to return but in a quieter time of the year, however Florence is a bigger city that embraces travellers all year round. I have also written about tips on planning a trip to Rome if you are  also looking for an Italian escape this year.

Florence Italy


  1. I absolutely love Italy but I haven't been to Florence - I'm dying to go! Off to Pisa in a few weeks, very excited :) xxx

    1. Oh that is exciting, have fun when your there :)
      Laura x

  2. Florence looks beautiful! My parents are going in September and we're very tempted to join them!

    1. You so should join them!! It looks like such a magical city - aiming to go there later this year

      Laura x

  3. I would absolutely love to visit Florence but, more importantly, is that a bike where the wheels look like slices of watermelon?!? AWESOME.

  4. I haven't travelled much in Italy at all - it's a country I'd love to explore and you make Florence sound magical!

  5. Florence is stunning! We were these last year and although we didn't do all of these, just wandering the streets and stopping for gelato and aperol spritz was such a treat. Simple things seem so much more delightful in a beautiful place like Florence! Hope you get to go! x

  6. I've never been to Italy and I'd absolutely LOVE to visit x


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