Private Walking Tours in Florence, including the Cathedral, Ponte Vecchio, Across the Arno, Pitti Palace, Boboli Gardens


Private Walking Tours in Florence
The Cathedral, Ponte Vecchio, Across the Arno, Pitti Palace, Boboli Gardens


Florence The First Time
Across the Arno
Sunset Bike Ride & Wine Tasting
Robert Langdon's Florence: On the Trail of Dan Brown's "Inferno"
The Green Gardens of Florence

"The best way to visit and appreciate the charm of Florence is with a tour guide keen on art and history, such as me! My name is Elisabetta and I'm 32 years old. I was born in a small town called Cingoli in the Marche region, but I've been living in Florence for over nine years. I specialized in classical studies, not neglecting the knowledge of English, French and a little bit of German (I use the excuse of improving them to visit London and Paris!). I am passionate about Art History, in which I obtained a degree at the University of Florence. In particular, my specialties are decorative arts, miniature portraits and the Renaissance. At present I am still studying (maybe I'm a perpetual student!), completing a master in Art History and at the same working as a researcher and publishing my studies in art exhibit catalogues. Last but not least, I'm a licensed tour guide. I love this job. It's a great experience for me because I like to communicate with people from different countries. I'm a positive girl with a sunny character and I think it's important to share my passion for art and history: that's my philosophy!!"

"My name is Valentina. I was born in Florence in 1968 and thanks to my British aunt, I've spoken English since I was very small. I studied humanities in high school, then went on to obtain a degree in English Literature. While writing my thesis, I lived in London for two years. Then I moved on, to Paris, where I obtained a PhD in Art History at the Sorbonne. When I came home to Florence, I undertook what were perhaps the hardest studies of all – to obtain the coveted license as a guide! I succeeded in 1998 and have been leading tours in English and French ever since. I can also speak Spanish, which I improved when I lived in Salamanca for four months. One of the things I like best about this job is the chance to communicate with people and share my love of history and art. It's easy to make new friends when you're doing what you love best!"



"Hi! My name is Giulia and I was born in Florence 28 years ago. I have been proud to grow up in the 'cradle of the Renaissance' with my very big family and my two cats. Art History has always been my passion. I graduated in this fascinating subject at the University of Florence, and since 2010 I have been a licensed tour guide, especially enjoying kids and families. In my tours I often use games as well as interactive, didactic and technological materials, since I want guests to feel actively involved in tours instead of merely being listeners. I truly love my job and my city, and I hope to share with you the secrets of Florence... I am a friendly and sunny person, always excited to meet new people and face new challenges."

"Hi, I'm Lara. My first passion in youth was gymnastics and as I was growing up I wondered whether I should choose it as a profession, but I became fascinated by the world of tourism and also of diplomacy. While I was studying political sciences I kept travelling as a tour leader all over the world, thus managing to pursue both interests for few years. Eventually, I started a diplomatic career abroad. But my passion for art, history and architecture never waned, and I missed the joy of making someone's holiday really special, plus I was homesick for the Tuscan hills where I was born. In the end, I came back to Florence where I am now a licensed guide. I am incredibly fortunate.  Every day I get to stroll through the tiny old back streets of the city, pausing to look out over the river from the Ponte Vecchio bridge, and taking in the stunning vistas from the top of the fabulous old Cathedral. It is wonderful, and I want to share some of the history, the romance, and the pleasure of my hometown with you! What a wonderful life, don't you agree?"


"Buongiorno! My name is Elizabeth and I am originally from Sarasota, Florida. I first came to Italy as a college student to study Art History and Italian Literature. I've been living in Florence, my adopted city, for too long now to remember! I hold a BA in Art History from Smith College and MA in Renaissance Art History from Syracuse University in addition to a Diploma in painting restoration from an Italian institution, Palazzo Spinelli. I am passionate about all things Italian - including handicrafts, wine, food, art and history - and love to share 'my Italy' with guests. I have been accompanying groups in the countryside of Tuscany and Umbria for over 10 years and recently I have also obtained the official license to lead art historical and city tours closer to home, in Florence. When not guiding I can often be found in the nearby park with my little boy Alessandro."


"Hello! My name is Lucia, and I was born in Rome 31 years ago. Rome and Florence are the two cities of my life and of my professional training. Although I graduated in Rome six years ago in History of Art, it was Florence that welcomed me four years ago, first for a student's grant, and then for my PhD in Art History. I'm specialized in Paintings, Old Drawings and Furniture. Art History has been my passion for a long time. It's a visual emotion which I am eager to communicate to other people, especially those who come from different countries and cultures. To that end, I studied English, French (I lived one year in Paris) and a little bit of German. I have made it my mission to be your friendly companion into the heart of a city which is full of history and many of the world's great artistic treasures."

Walksare for private groups of 2 to 8 people. Larger groups are welcome so please ask us for prices.

FLORENCE, THE FIRST TIME

This is the best tour if you've never been to Florence before. It combines many of the famous highlights and some secret treasures of the 2000-year-old city. Here's how Elisabetta and Valentina describe it:

"When we talk of Florence we immediately think of the Renaissance, but it was actually founded as long ago as the 1st century BC, by the Romans. No wonder, then, that it has the largest amount of historical buildings and works of art in Italy, as well as several world-class museums and a unique atmosphere that has made it a beloved destination of travelers. Our walk will take us to see some wonderful buildings, from Romanesque churches and homes dating as far back as the 10th century, to monumental Gothic basilicas and medieval towers, to the famed Renaissance chapels and palazzi (private houses). Our goal is to help you experience each era in Florentine history and see with your own eyes how the city developed and changed across the centuries.

We begin inside the old city center, built atop the Roman claustrum. The streets in this neighborhood are still laid out along the lines of the ancient roads of that city. Some of the earliest churches were built using the foundations of the Roman temples, and we'll see the modern city border, once protected by a great ring of walls.

Next we'll move forward in time to the 13th century. We'll see how Florence, which had become a sleepy backwater, was transformed in the Middle Ages into the epicenter of world economy and art. Luckily for us, the basilicas, Palazzo Vecchio, the Duomo, many tower houses and the Bargello prison were made to last, so we can admire the ancient art of building. Along the tour we'll also give you suggestions for what to see later on your own.



T
he Medici dynasty and the magnificent Renaissance season come next. We will pass by famous buildings and discover a handful of masterpieces that are still in their original locations. In the optional visits of the basilicas of Santa Maria Novella or Santa Croce, we'll admire the Gothic high pillars and the Renaissance frescoes.

Hopefully, after this overview of Florence, you too will feel at home here, not only familiar with the main historical and artistic sites, but also with the street life, the food and wine traditions and the different markets. Remember: one time is not enough, so take "Florence, the first time" and you'll be sure to come back for more!"

2016 All-inclusive price:
1-2 People: 185 EURO (for two hours in the afternoon)
3-6 People: 237 EURO (for three hours)
7-8 People: 252 EURO (for three hours)

Larger groups are welcome so please ask us for prices.



DILA' D'ARNO (ACROSS THE ARNO)



"Immerse yourself in the authentic spirit of Florence. This walk explores the oldest part of town across the Arno River, the Oltrarno. Hidden alleyways, local artisans at work, morning outdoor markets, and authentic trattorie help maintain this neighborhood's original look and feel.

Since most tours concentrate on the Signoria and Duomo area, this is a relatively undiscovered part of the city. We start the tour visiting the delightful square of Santo Spirto with its Reniassance church by Brunelleschi. From there we will follow a Renaissance itinerary, strolling past Palazzo Pitti, where your guide will explain the fascinating history of this building, linked to Palazzo Vecchio by Vasari's famous above ground corridor passing over Ponte Vecchio. Before the tour ends, we will visit the most important part of the Oltrarno: the artisans' workshops including marble artisans, blacksmiths, wood restorers, and antiquarians."

2016 All-inclusive price:
1-2 People: 185 EURO (for two hours in the afternoon)
3-6 People: 237 EURO (for three hours)
7-8 People: 252 EURO (for three hours)

Larger groups are welcome so please ask us for prices.





THIS TOUR IS AVAILABLE ON REQUEST ONLY IN 2016

ROBERT LANGDON'S FLORENCE: ON THE TRAIL OF DAN BROWN'S "INFERNO"

Here's your chance to follow in the tracks of everybody's favorite art historian. If you've already finished Dan Brown's latest bestseller you will now be able to see where all the action took place, and understand the true meaning of the mystery. Haven't read it yet? Even better! Our private tour combines entertainment with erudition so that when you do read the book or see the movie, you'll be able to picture the actual locations. Just tell the guide you don't want to ruin the suspense, and you will be enlightened without knowing how it all turns out.

Your tour starts in Piazza Pitti, where you can view the Vasari Corridor, a key escape route in the book. You'll follow it to the Uffizi Galleries, but instead of entering the museum, you'll step into breathtaking Piazza della Signoria, the Renaissance heart of Florence and the epicenter of "Inferno." Along the way you will be learning about the poet Dante, whose life and monumental love story were so intertwined with these very streets. Adorning one side of the piazza is the spectacular Palazzo Vecchio, Florence Town Hall, your next destination. Here you will see Vasari's "Battle of Marciano," location of the professor's first clue; you'll follow him and Sienna past the Apotheosis of Cosimo I to the Medici Apartments and on to a mysterious door behind which you'll find the all-important Death Mask of Dante.

Outside once again, you're off on a wander through the medieval alleys of the city, which look astonishingly the same as the fateful day when Dante first laid eyes on his beloved Beatrice. You'll see the Bargello and Badia, as well as the building where Langford and Sienna hide from the forces of evil. This delightful stroll ends in front of the cathedral and the baptistery, where you will come face-to-face with Paradise, one of the utmost masterpieces of the Renaissance. Fun for travelers of any age, this intriguing walk is inspired by Dan Brown's own fascination with mythology, art and history, something you'll absorb as you follow his infernal clues.


Included in the Price:
Three-hour private guided tour with English-speaking licensed guide
Entrance tickets to Palazzo Vecchio and the Baptistery
iPad support during the tour provided by the guide





THE GREEN GARDENS OF FLORENCE



"We are pleased to offer a new walking tour for people who want to explore a different Florence; a Florence not only of architectural beauty and art but also of trees and plants and flowers. Put your walking shoes on and enjoy a Florence which is somewhat hidden and almost totally off the beaten path with your wonderful English speaking guides!



M
eet in heart of old Florence at Piazza della Signora. After a brief introduction to the city and artistic center, make your way over Ponte Vecchio to the delightful Piazza San Felicità. Learn here about the very ancient church of the same name, which later became a Medici favourite. Admire the psychedelic painting of the Deposition by the one of the most important Mannerist painters of the time, Jacopo Pontormo, still found in its original location as the devotional centerpiece of the Capponi family chapel.


A
fterwards stroll down Via del Bardi, passing magnificent aristocratic palaces dating back to the 15th, 16th and 17th centuries, eventually arriving at Bardini Gardens - a marvelous surprise. Stefano Bardini was a 19th-century antique dealer and collector. The Italian state was given his estate after lengthy proceedings which took over 20 years to sort out! His monumental gardens have just recently been re-opened after an extensive renovation and we are pleased to inform that they have returned to their former glory. Enjoy myrtle, laurel, ilex and when in bloom iris, roses and azaleas. What is more, you will also enjoy some of the best panoramic views of Florence. Nary a tourist will you see here!

Afterwards, make your way to another important green space and living work of art, the Boboli Gardens. Part of the Palazzo Pitti Complex – once the home of Eleonora di Toledo and Cosimo I de Medici – the complex later became the official family headquarters of the Medici Grand Ducal dynasty. The gardens were laid out for Cosimo I by Tribolo and Ammannati. Many of the statues which decorate the walks come from the Roman Era and the Amphitheater was designed in imitation of a Roman circus. A flight of stairs leads you up to the secluded Giardino del Cavaliere with picturesque views of the Tuscany countryside. Then stroll the Viottolone, a magnificent cypress avenue which descends steeply through the manicured grounds. After an exploration of the gardens with your guide, with camellias blooming in the spring, the tour ends on the premises.

Keep your entry ticket though, as you can spend the rest of the day enjoying any of the three other museums included in the ticket price (the Costume Museum, the Silver Museum or the Porcelain Museum)."


2016 All-inclusive price:
1-3 People: 237 EURO/group
4-6 People: 252 EURO/group
7-8 People: 267 EURO/group
Larger groups are welcome so please ask us for prices.


Tickets to the Bardini Gardens and Boboli Gardens ARE NOT INCLUDED AND SHALL BE PAID ON SITE (about Euro 10,00 per person, subject to change). Please note that the entry ticket does not include the Palatine Gallery: you may purchase the ticket for this museum by clicking here. Please wear comfortable walking shoes and bring a bottle of water. Be aware that there is quite a lot of up and down walking! This tour is offered Tuesday through Sunday 9:30 am to 12:00 pm. The tour is not offered on Mondays due to museum closing times. In July and August, due to the warm temperatures the tour is offered with an early morning departure from 8.30 am to 11.00 am. The tour runs rain or shine: in inclement weather bring an umbrella and more time will be spent in the Palazzo Pitti Silver Museum.