Florence, Italy


Ponte Vecchio in Florence, Italy

Ah, Florence, city of art and fine dining. City of Dante and his Divine Comedy, of Michelangelo and his David, Leonardo, Botticelli, Donatello, and Brunelleschi. How has one place produced so many great artists? And don’t forget the architecture–museums, palaces, churches, the Duomo. Bridge after bridge cross the Arno River—though of course the most famous is Ponte Vecchio, the beautiful covered bridge in the centre of Florence. The bridge dates back to medieval times. It was once common for bridges to be enclosed and lined with shops and stands, but few such bridges like this remain. Once the site of a Roman bridge, the Ponte Vecchio connects the two banks of the Arno at its narrowest point. Over the course of time, it has been weakened or swept away by floods and other disasters but has always been rebuilt. A common legend proposes that the Ponte Vecchio created both the term and phenomenon of bankruptcy, as any merchant on the bridge who could not pay his bills had his table or “banco” broken (“rotto”) by the authorities to render any further sales impossible (hence, “bancorotto.”) Oh, did I mention that, along with Pulteney Bridge in Bath and the Rialto Bridge in Venice, the Ponte Vecchio is the only other remaining bridge with shops on it in  Europe (all of which I’ve visited…)? Pretty cool!


3 thoughts on “Florence, Italy

    • Glad to hear! I went there a few years ago when my mum came to Europe. I told her if she came all the way here, she got to choose the destination, and she choose Italy: Florence, Milan, and Lake Como. I remember wandering the streets of Florence and visiting the cathedrals and churches, and eating lots of gelato, but I am sad to say we never made it to the Ufitzi (too long lines & poor planning on my part). We did, however, find Dante’s house, which was really neat. One day, I will have to go back and better appreciate the art in Florence…

      • We didn’t get to enjoy the art in Florence either. We did, however, see some amazing street art. People were recreating the Mona Lisa on the pavement and it was stunning. I would love to go back and explore the museums.

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